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Amplify Your Brand

Here’s a question for everyone. Can a brand influence a buyers behavior? Of course it can. You know about the brand and you like it. What else is there. But will it be the same always? Maybe not. Let me share an example of some research done on a few hundred students to study what makes a brand what it is and how that influences a customer. They were given a visual test where highly popular logos flashed for a fraction of a second. Following this was a creative test where they wrote down all the uses they could think of for a brick. Results showed more creative uses came from participants who correctly recognized the Apple logo, which was shown in the above test. This provided evidence on how brand exposure caused people to act in specific ways. All thanks to branding.
When it comes to search marketing, branding might seem hazy and unnecessary, but PPC advertising has a specific goal. Here’s a secret, PPC advertising does impact the bottom line. Let me share some tips on how to go about this. Firstly, be very visible and follow this with showing your customers that you reward and care for them for doing business with you. Use this to ensure you have covered important milestones in the sales journey, and to understand how PPC can support you.
 
1. Be Everywhere
Top brands understand customers well and make it easy to find what customers are looking for, hence winning hearts. This is where designing the ad with the right messaging becomes important. A mix of products, social media streams and other distractions don’t make the purchasing journey easy. The customer needs to be provided with one clear choice, not many. Trying to please too many categories of audiences is also not recommended. And gauging the customers stage of interest or needs and organizing site-links, while giving them multiple ways to choose you, shows that you care. When targeting by geography, provide location and call extension to enhance customer experience. Today, people search on mobile as well, and conversions on mobile happen within five hours of search (source: Microsoft Internal research). Try shortening the conversion time with call extensions. Different buying options like walking into a nearby store or making an online purchase with a discount entices customers along their journey.
2. Show That You Care:
Strong brand are usually trusted with ease, but strangely, their mistakes are forgiven quickly. Anticipate issues, or be there when customers complain. As people first visit a search engine when looking something up, doing well in the SERP’s makes a big difference. Visit consumer forums and answer questions that relate to your category without overly selling your product, which is bound to make potential customers take notice. Bid on these keywords and strengthen your brand. In these scenarios, you can consider running ads related to competitor complaints. Be helpful, but don’t gloat. It is worth testing due to the low cost, but this may not lead to many conversions as customers are looking to complain and not purchase. An added benefit is that  with PPC advertising, the PR and SEO teams also benefit. Reputation management, brand protection and brand sentiment monitoring are possible with PPC. Serving ads on terms that support the content you have allows you to give your audience the info they are looking for.
3. Bringing and Keeping the Customers:
Making sure a person stays a customer for as long as possible is the most worthwhile thing a brand can do. Smart re-marketing and giving customers more of what they like will keep them tuned in to your activities and offers. Estimating the lifetime of a product and giving customers a great deal if they buy again is a win-win situation for all, as it features an offer and comes at the right time. Although the customer sees it as a good deal, it is in fact smart re-marketing. Humour with good intentions gets attention, goodwill and lots of PR. Engaging customers makes it easy for them to be loyal to the brand. And to create loyal customers, you, as a brand, have to give back in meaningful ways.
Marketing is nothing but telling great relevant stories and PPC is the best way to channel content that customers enjoy. Paid search campaigns are stories in the brand journey, and you are free to contribute as you like. Have you found a way to use PPC to help grow your brand? I’d love to hear your ideas in the comments below.

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