Providing Effective Pay-Per-Click Marketing Support for Your Local Affiliates

June 6, 2012 Jared Shusterman

Implementing a local Pay Per Click campaign not only expands a brand's opportunity to capture a greater piece of the local search landscape, but often performs better when compared to national PPC campaigns. So why do so many Distributed Organizations struggle to implement PPC Campaigns at the local level? The reason is obvious: many don't know where to begin.

The Local PPC Opportunity Everyone Should Know

Smart Field Marketing Managers, Co-op Managers and Channel Marketing Managers all realize they need to support a local PPC strategy for their various locations, stores, small businesses, dealers, franchises or other local entities. Here's why: Cost Efficiency -- A hyper-local PPC strategy may outperform a national strategy by bidding down keyword sets with geographic relevance for consumers Co-Op Partnership -- As more small businesses become educated on digital marketing tactics, many Local Marketers are asking for support from their National Brand partners Well-Intentioned Mistakes -- Many Local Marketers are taking a stab at it themselves - they are often under educated, and the campaigns are not effective Brands managing national programs understand the amount of work involved in optimizing potentially thousands of keyword sets and campaigns. But how does one splinter this out exponentially, and keep it under control, while measuring local ROI?

Use Distributed Marketing Automation to Manage Hyper-Local PPC

The only practical way to manage iterations of a national Paid Search locally, is to use a distributed marketing partner who can:

1. Quickly on-board locations and launch hyper-local PPC campaigns that are fully structured and populated

2. Mass manage thousands of Paid Search accounts with millions of campaign elements

3. Easily track conversion, including call-tracking reports, and flow this reporting to the local marketer with consolidated views for the national brand

4. Provide automated campaign optimization around CTR, ROI / ROAS, CVR, etc.

A partner should be specialized and have the operational structure to fully provide hands-on support to a network of local marketers, as well as understand the best practices to provide a smooth and successful launch of a program.

Best Practices for Local Paid Search Programs

Among those national brands that have employed local paid search programs for years, a few best practices have emerged and should be referenced for others in process of structuring their own program.

Bet on Technology - Without an automated distribution technology platform, the art of managing local preferences from each partner in the field, launching their programs across the search engines, gathering reporting back, and campaign modification/optimization is impossible. All successful Local PPC programs use technology specifically designed for this purposes.

Educate and Communicate - Once a program is launched, consistent webinars, on-demand videos, and a built-up knowledgebase is fundamental in helping local marketing partners understand the basics behind the program. Continuously communicate bid-strategy and the program's intent. Especially if a local partner is footing the bill, it is important each participate understands how to measure success so they know how to value the program - and expectations are well managed.

Bundle Services into Packages - Packages give local marketers a digestible way to enroll in a program without overwhelming them with options. Packages can also borrow from a national paid search strategy and conventions that have been learned by years of work. Packages may include keyword sets, scope of services, and monthly budgets. This makes it much easier to administer local versions of a PPC strategy by standardizing a few main aspects of a program.

Build for the 80/20 rule - A program should accommodate 80% of channel partners. Those local partners that have the larger budgets may never fit into the structure of packages identified in the third point. It's best to also have custom tailored solutions for those who may have the bandwidth and desire to spend more.

Include Co-op - Co-op programs are a great way to get channel partners invested into a program - especially when the method of marketing like PPC may be new to them. By sharing in the financial responsibility of Paid Search, local channel partners have a stronger reason to participate.

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About the Author

Jared Shusterman

Jared is the Founder and Managing Partner of SproutLoud. Since 2005, he has been primarily responsible for strategic direction of the Company, as well as the oversight of SproutLoud's Partner ecosystem. Prior to SproutLoud, Jared worked in Thomas Weisel Partner’s internet and online advertising investment banking practice in San Francisco. He served as the lead analyst on a number of Corporate Finance and M&A deals including Newscorps’ buyout of Intermix Media ( Jared graduated with a B.A. in Finance and Marketing from the McIntire School of Commerce at the University of Virginia. Jared has an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University and is a member of the Young President's Organization (YPO). Jared has been honored as one of the Top 40 under 40 entrepreneurs by South Florida Business Journal and a Top 50 Entrepreneur by Business Leader Magazine. Jared lives in South Florida with his wife and two sons.

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