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This is a REALLY BAD IDEA from Google…

Don’t get me wrong, I’m as big a fan of Google as anyone. I think it’s a fair estimation that at least half of all pools sold in the United States in the last five years were sold because of Google.

Between paid search and organic search, Google consistently captures at least two-thirds if not three-fourths of all searches online. So I’m not knocking Google at all. It’s a powerful tool that I recommend and respect highly.

However, they are pulling one cute little stunt here that is a REALLY BAD IDEA. It starts with this friendly, innocent-looking e-mail that you’ll get from Google:



Doesn’t that look sweet and thoughtful and innocent?

They’re offering you a $150 credit in Google ad spend, and a happier and simpler life, if you’ll just adopt their “automatically applied recommendations” for your ad campaign.

Here’s the problem. If you’re in the pool and spa industry, and you take Google’s recommendations for advertising in the “pool and spa” industry, then you are going to start getting phone calls for such misguided things as:

  • Day spa
  • Resort spa
  • Destination spa
  • Skin care, facials, massage, manicure, pedicure, etc.
  • Pool tables / Billiards
  • Above ground pool
  • Inflatable pool
  • Cattle trough / stock tank pool
  • Intex pool
  • Football pool
  • Endless pool
  • And many more

This happens because Google either hasn’t researched, or doesn’t care about the “negative keywords” that we need to use in this industry, to prevent these types of misguided searches and phone calls.

Every one of those misguided searches (and many more) should be entered into your campaign as a “negative keyword.”

Negative keywords tell Google to NOT serve your ads when someone searches those misguided phrases.

Now I know that a whopping $150 in free Google ads might be pretty tempting, but think of all the time you’ll waste fielding phone calls from people who want to get a facial and a mani-pedi, or a massage, or new cue sticks for their pool table.

Not only a waste of time, but a waste of precious ad money as well.

So the next time Google says “Hey buddy, you want $150 in free credits?” remember Nancy Reagan’s advice:

“Just say NO!

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