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3 Reasons Your Google Ads Campaigns Are Not Working

Are you frustrated by the lack of ROI (return on investment) you receive from your Google Ads campaign?

Do you feel like you’re just throwing money down the drain? That nothing you do is getting the attention of your potential customers?

You’re not alone.

It’s tough getting started marketing online if you haven’t done it before. You probably spoke to a few online marketing companies, asked around, heard some success stories, and decided to take the plunge and jump in.

You started a Google Ads campaign, worked on your SEO, or began publishing on social media – or maybe all three.

Google AdWords Campaigns

And that’s when it started getting expensive.

Those monthly costs add up, and although you started getting some leads, you never quite made the money you expected, breaking even on your investment or making a small loss.

Sound familiar?

We hear you. It’s frustrating and disappointing when a campaign doesn’t perform as well as can be expected. What’s the point of investing money in marketing, only to break even – or worse – make a loss?

You see your competitors on Google every day, and you wonder how they can market so aggressively and make money when you struggle to break even.

But you know there must be a better way – that’s why you’re here.

The good news is, you’re right – there is a better way.

After investing millions of dollars on Google Ads for our customers, we’ve discovered that most businesses make three common mistakes when investing in Google Ads or other online marketing campaigns.

In fact, we can say with almost complete certainty that your business is making at least one of these mistakes, and possibly all three of them.

Let’s take a look:

1. Your website/landing page isn’t converting well

70% of the time when a business approaches us with an under performing online marketing campaign, it is their website that is the problem.

But it’s not just the website itself; it’s the thinking and strategy behind the website.

It was Sun Tzu who said – Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.

A strategy is an overall plan for achieving your objective; tactics are the means used to achieve this objective.

  • Google Ads is a tactic
  • SEO is a tactic 
  • Remarketing is a tactic
  • Facebook Marketing is a tactic
  • Instagram Marketing is a tactic

Most businesses start using these tactics without first investing time in creating their strategy. It’s a haphazard approach that is encouraged by much of the poor marketing advice available on the internet.

You’re probably familiar with some of the following:

  • “You need to get on insert social media network immediately”
  • “If you write it, they will come”
  • “Just do it”

Unfortunately, this advice is normally wrong. Acting blindly without first working on your strategy is going to waste your marketing spend – and any agency or ‘guru’ who suggests otherwise is giving you bad advice.

We understand the temptation to skip straight to working on tactics – creating a digital marketing strategy takes time, effort and expertise to figure it out. You need to:

  • Study your competitors and their marketing strategies to understand what is working in your market.
  • Study your customers and figure out who your audience is and how you can connect with and communicate with them.
  • Create a strategy that communicates effectively with your intended customers across the channels that they use.
  • Evaluate the success of the tactics you are using and iterate to improve your ROI (return on investment) over time.

Of course, you don’t necessarily need to do this yourself. But you do need to find a company who understands that your strategy will make or break your online marketing campaign, and who is willing to invest time and resources to help you get that strategy right.

There are many web development and online marketing companies who will not do this for you. They have short-term thinking and do not understand the power of building a strategy from the beginning. They’d much rather jump straight into charging you for the tactics they provide.

We like to take a different approach.

We’ve generated $100m in leads for businesses just like yours by implementing a proven formula for creating digital marketing strategies that generate leads on autopilot. They work for our current clients, and they can work for you.

2. Your current Agency is not managing your account effectively

We see it all the time. A client switches to us, and when we are handed the Google Ads accounts, we find that their previous agency (which has often been managing the account for years), has either not made one single change to that account in recent history or has made a few simple changes that have not delivered value.

When this happens, the agency is charging you money every month, but providing little new value in return. These agencies rely on the fact that their clients, many of whom may not be too tech-savvy, probably won’t check what they are doing.

We see three types of ineffective agency:

  • Set-It-And-Forget-It Agencies – These agencies set up your account adequately so that it provides leads, but then leave it to run every month with little optimisation. They are unlikely to take further action unless you complain.
  • Robo Agencies – These agencies rely on automated software to run their accounts. They charge you a monthly fee in return for which they just push your account through a standard piece of software. This, at best, can provide only small improvements to account performance.
  • Out-of-Date Agencies – These agencies are hands-on – but they just don’t know what they’re doing. They set up your accounts badly from the start and then continue to manage them ineffectually. Often, these agencies are far behind the times and don’t take advantage of the latest innovations – but they still charge the same high fees.

Regardless of which category your agency falls into, there is a clear problem: Your Google Ads campaign is running on autopilot. You are paying a monthly fee for on-going, effective management of your account – but you’re not getting it.

Many clients are understandably annoyed when they find this out. We’ve seen clients getting lawyers involved, putting bad reviews out on their previous agency, and even contacting other clients to warn them.

Taking action like this feels good, and can occasionally recover some value, but at the end of the day the damage has already been done, and the business has lost out on the valuable new clients it could have brought in if its marketing had been handled better.

This happens a lot more often than you might think. These agencies go out of business eventually when customers catch them, but they could run for several years, doing very little work, before they get found out.

(Psst… Worried your agency has put your campaign on autopilot? Simply go to your Google Ads account and look at the change history to see how hard they’ve been working!)

Of course, some campaigns may appear to run ok on autopilot, but it’s never optimal – why settle for lower performance? Many businesses miss out on the latest innovations because their agency is on autopilot.

Case Study: Plumbing Sales

In early 2019 we took over an account called “Plumbing Company”, who asked us to take a look at their account and how it could be improved because they felt their campaign was underperforming.

About two years previous to this, Google had launched something called Smart Shopping Campaigns, which was aimed at businesses just like “Plumbing Company”. But, when we looked at their account, their agency hadn’t even started to use this feature – two years after it launched.

We implemented this immediately upon taking over the account, and from the first month of working with us they have essentially received twice the value from their AdWords compared to what they received before, just with this one small change.

Take a look at the before and after:

Think what a difference this would have made to their business if this had been implemented two years earlier!

Their old agency had put their account on autopilot and cost them tens of thousands of dollars in leads. 

In a few months’ time, Google will roll out Gallery Ads – is your agency going to help you take advantage of them?

3. You’re not “re-marketing” to people that have visited your website

Approximately 95% of the people who visit your website will leave without taking any action. Yep, that’s right – 95%!

So, after spending an absolute fortune per click on Google Ads or Facebook, nearly all of those people will leave without taking action.

Ouch.

So, what happens to the missing 95%?

Statistically, 90% of them will buy something within the next two weeks to 6 months.

So, that’s good news – but are they purchasing your product or service? What are you doing to keep your business top-of-mind when they make a purchase decision?

One of the most effective ways to achieve this is remarketing, which is advertising targeted at people who have already visited your website. This enables you to target your advertising at proven leads who have not yet made a purchase decision.

This strategy is incredibly powerful, because every customer you target has already shown an interest in your service. This targeted advertising is far more cost-effective than showing ads to thousands of strangers, many of whom won’t be looking for your solution.

Sounds great, right?

However, it’s not quite as simple as just following your customers around the internet with ads. To be successful, you must keep their attention by continually providing value or by delivering offers that appeal to your target market.

That’s where your agency comes in – you can’t run a remarketing campaign on autopilot. You need to regularly update your ads so that your customers keep noticing them.

Google AdWords Campaigns

Your Next Step

So there you have it. The three most common mistakes that most businesses make when doing online marketing.

Which ones are your business making? And what are you going to do about it?

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