This might seem like a strange thing for the owner of a PPC agency to say, but there really are NO AdWords geniuses!
I frequently hear people talking about so and so as an “AdWords Genius.”
But when someone says that, I immediately know that they don’t thoroughly understand AdWords. Because saying someone is an “AdWords Genius” is very much akin to pointing out a good French speaker and saying “Look at him, he’s a French Genius!”
There aren’t any French Geniuses. “Genius” implies an innate ability unattainable by the average person.
In French, there’s a basic level of fluency which becomes progressively more natural and embedded in a speaker’s brain the more time they spend in France interacting with native speakers in the culture.
Pretty much ANYONE could attain this level of fluency if they decided to spend enough time in France. (Or Montreal!)
It might APPEAR to an outsider, struggling in their first few hundred hours of studying the language that this other person was a French Genius, but the truth is, it’s just a reflection of the time and energy they spent in France.
Moreover, an argument could be made that the person who chose to spend just a few hundred hours studying French to achieve basic fluency has a more balanced life, and will achieve more in their business dealings in France than the one who dedicated all their time and energy to appearing like a French Genius.
You wouldn’t spend a lifetime studying French if your goal was only to be comfortable enough in the culture to do business profitably with the locals. There’s definitely a point of diminishing returns… there might be 80,000+ words in the French Dictionary (I’m guessing), but the masses rarely use more than 5,000 or so.
It’s the difference between efficiency and effectiveness!
Similarly, there are NO AdWords Geniuses.
Rather, there’s a basic level of fluency which most people reach by spending a few months immersed in the machine. From there, there’s only an incremental ease with which they work in AdWords depending upon how much time and energy they put into practicing.
There certainly ARE hundreds of nuances to AdWords, but many of them can’t be leveraged by anyone who properly considers AdWords only PART of their business and doesn’t intend to be a full time PPC manager. There are only about a dozen AdWords things you really need to master to achieve a basic fluency. (Campaign Settings, Keyword Groupings, Match Types, Spit Testing, Basic Content Network Logic, Placement Targeting, Conversion Tracking, etc)
Anyone can do it. (Well, any detail oriented person… a lot of purely creative, right-brain types have trouble, in my experience)
The REAL leverage point in AdWords isn’t in AdWords at all.
To maximize your AdWords profits you really need to understand what’s on the customer’s mind BEFORE AND AFTER the click.
Knowing what’s on their mind BEFORE they click helps you get the customer at the most efficient rate (high CTR, OPT IN, and SALES RATES), but more importantly shows you how to TAKE THE PROSPECT OUT OF THE COMPETITIVE ENVIRONMENT.
(AdWords is brutal… you want the customer to feel that you’ve almost psychically read their mind so they stop their search and start studying what you’ve got to offer in the context of a “go to relationship” with you, and hopefully you alone!)
Knowing what’s on their mind AFTER the click is critical so you can maximize the value of every customer.
And THIS is perhaps the most important part. Because Adwords is such a competitive auction environment, no matter how good you get at efficiency, it’s effectiveness, or maximum visitor value, which wins the game in the long run.
In other words, if you’re running Adwords at only a small profit and plan to just let it ride, you’re probably planning a losing game. To truly dominate your market in Adwords, you’ve got to engineer your whole business such that you’re the one who can afford to pay the MOST for clicks.
Yes, you read that right.
Sure you want to buy them efficiently, but you want to be making so much from every visitor that no matter what happens in the auction you can afford to outbid the next guy.
And here’s the thing…
YOU control what happens after you’ve got the opt in or the customer, NOT GOOGLE!
So why get sucked into spending all your time inside a machine someone else controls? Get it running profitably and then turn it over to an agency to achieve maximum efficiency and volume (e.g. Rocket Clicks), then spend the majority of your resources maximizing the VALUE of each visitor by researching what they want, building back end products and services, segmenting and servicing your list, doing joint ventures, etc.
That’s where your leverage point really is, and that’s how you build a solid and secure business.
Ask yourself this question… no matter what the price of the highest end product you’re currently selling in your business, how can you add a zero? What would you need to find out from your market? What would you have to deliver to be worth 10x what people are currently paying?
And if that’s TOO outrageous for you, how about, what would it take to achieve DOUBLE OR TRIPLE the price?
Because that’ll change the whole economics of your business, and you’ll find yourself thinking quite differently about the Google PPC auction. (You’ll probably also find other advertising vehicles open to you which you previously thought were not cost effective)
Worth thinking about, right?
Your humble (OK, not so humble) AdWords servant,
Dr. G 🙂