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Here are 4 key tips from our PPC webinar last week…

By Brett Lloyd Abbott, Pool Builder Marketing Inc.

If you joined us for last week’s webinar “Why Do Pool Builders Hate Their PPC Agencies?” then you heard these top 4 tips firsthand. (And thank you for attending, by the way.)

Today’s newsletter is for those who missed it.

Just to recap, a lot of my clients started complaining about “disappointing results” with their PPC agencies this past year. So I surveyed several hundred pool builders across the US, to see how they felt.

The results showed that an overwhelming majority (92%!) were “less than ecstatic” with the results of their PPC campaigns.

So I pulled in the smartest and most trusted PPC people I knew (StrataBlue), showed them the data, and asked them “Why are so many people disappointed with their PPC agencies?”

Here’s what they told us, in response to each of the complaints.


COMPLAINT #1 – “Is This Thing Paying for Itself?”

This question has frustrated me as much as my clients. I would look to the monthly report from the PPC agency, to see if the monthly spend was justified. We could see how many phone calls and how many inquiries we got, but we could never answer the magic question: “How many of these PPC leads actually bought something?”

That’s because in the CRM system, we couldn’t tell which of the so-called “Internet leads” were PPC, and which ones were organic.

SOLUTION: “Lead tracking down to the name and address”

Another PPC expert taught me about this solution a few months ago, specifically for Infusionsoft. We added “iTracker360” tracking software to all our client websites, and now we could tell not only whether the lead was paid or organic, but which campaign they clicked, and which keywords they searched.

And then obviously, we can track whether or not that specific person bought a pool.

The experts at StrataBlue confirmed that this sort of advanced tracking software is available for just about any CRM. (They were especially fond of SWYDO.)

If your PPC agency isn’t tracking down to this level, they should start that immediately.


COMPLAINT #2 – “Am I getting ripped off?”

I don’t want to over-explain this one, because the solution was so brilliantly simple, I almost cried.

The core issue here is that when you give $5000 (or whatever) to your PPC agency every month, it’s difficult to know how much of that is going to pay for ads, and how much of that is going into their pocket.

(I wrote about a way to check on this a couple of years ago. But THIS solution is WAY better.)

SOLUTION: “Two Invoices”

Don’t give your ad money to the PPC agency. Pay it directly to Google through your own Google Ads account. Then pay the PPC agency exactly what you both agree should be their monthly fee.

Now there’s never any question about how much is going to the ads, and how much is going to the agency. (If your agency balks at this, then you’ve got a pretty clear answer to the question above, don’t you?)


COMPLAINT #3 – “These Leads Suck”

Some pool builders were complaining that the quality of the PPC leads wasn’t very good. (We’ve seen that a lot with Home Advisor, and even more so with its predecessor, Service Magic.)

Could be out of area; could be neighborhoods where an above-ground pool is much more likely than inground pool. Or it could be that you’re just getting a lot of “tire kickers”.

SOLUTION: “Several Things…”

If you’re getting leads out-of-area, then you need to have a conversation with your PPC agency about the geo-targeting. It’s very easy to add or exclude areas. So this problem should be rare, if it occurs at all.

The second solution is a little more challenging. It has to do with “ad copy” and “website content.” If your ads or website are promoting “Best Price in Town” or anything along those lines, then you are naturally going to attract the price shoppers, who are typically the hardest to sell and least likely to buy.

If “lousy leads” is a problem for you, take a close, critical look at your ads, and your website.


COMPLAINT #4 – “We’re Not Getting Enough Leads…”

To this, StrataBlue was incredulous. They insist there are plenty of leads out there for everyone, and that if you aren’t getting as much as you want, the ad agency is definitely doing something wrong.

It’s important to note that “increase the budget” MIGHT be a solution, but it’s NOT the first thing StrataBlue recommends.

SOLUTION: “Intelligent Analysis / A 2nd Opinion…”

This is the most complicated solution, and probably the hardest thing for you to try to do on your own. You should really have a PPC expert (such as StrataBlue, or anyone other than your current ad agency) take a close look at your current campaigns, to see what’s wrong. It could be any combination of:

  • Your Ad copy
  • Your Website Landing Pages
  • All the Other Content On Your Website
  • The Keywords You’re Using
  • The Negative Keywords You’re NOT Using
  • The Amount You’re Bidding on Certain Keywords
  • And possibly the Monthly Budget

Plus a myriad of other items and tactics.

Again, if you know of another PPC agency other than the one you’re using, invite them in to have a look at your campaigns, and offer an expert “second opinion.”

If you don’t have another agency in mind, you can contact my recommended expert:
Slava Vidomanets
Top Strategist and Managing Partner at StrataBlue
at 317-414-1019, or slavav@stratablue.com.


Note that I’ll be announcing ANOTHER webinar in the weeks ahead, where I bring ANOTHER expert to talk about growing your business without necessarily spending more money.

To your success…
Brett Lloyd Abbott
Head Guru at Pool Builder Marketing LLC

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