Skip to main content
Instapage

How to combine AdWords with Outbrain without cannibalizing their effectiveness

How different parts of the funnel can specifically incorporate two different channels – AdWords and Outbrain – while avoiding cannibalization.

There may be a portion of digital marketing professionals who remember a time when the number of channels were limited. Today though, there’s many more channels than we really need, and each channel has a number of different options.

Although an omni-channel campaign will have one major objective, not every channel can be used in the same way, hence they need to be aligned so that they’re playing to their own strengths.

There is a temptation to judge everything on the same metrics, but to do that will mean ignoring the nuances of each channel and removing any of those aforementioned strengths.

AdWords and Outbrain: differences and similarities

Let’s take AdWords and Outbrain as examples. These are often seen as competing channels, even though they exist in distinctly different guises. It’s a dangerous thing to run them both with the same expectations on what they’re going to deliver at the end. The thing that can help you is to remember how they actually execute and target end users.

AdWords is predominantly about capitalising on a user’s search intent. Your ads will appear just when a user is really looking for your products or services, and that is the perfect time to strike.

adwords

Outbrain is based around matching content by similar context.

outbrain-logo-vector-download

The belief here is that if a user is already reading or consuming content on a certain subject, they’ll be interested in getting more of the same from another source. Clearly then, these two channels are very distinct in both their visuals, and targeting methods.

Interaction

The next step will be to understand how users interact with them, because that will tell you at what stage of the sales funnel they’re most likely to be used at.

Whereas an AdWords practitioner can be reasonably confident about interpreting search query intent, an Outbrain optimiser is dealing with a bit more uncertainty.

As a result, you might want to assign Outbrain higher up the funnel than AdWords, where it can get broader reach and use the content to help nurture leads. AdWords, on the other hand, can be used towards the sharper end, as we can be surer of its users’ intents.

Measurement

So now that we’ve understood the way they work, who they target and established their purposes, we can begin thinking about how these get measured. This is important, as it’s ultimately the part that enables us to judge whether or not they’re doing a good job.

For AdWords, the most sensible way to proceed would be to track final conversions. This could be shopping basket checkouts, newsletter registrations or ticket sales, whatever it is, it’s the final action that you want your users to take and round things off. It makes sense because there are definitely instances where a final search engine query leads to the end.

As for Outbrain, because it’s being used as a firehose to fill the funnel, its measurement metric needs to be a bit more abstract. In cases such as this, you need to ask questions as to how you measure the quality of the traffic.

It might be reducing the bounce rate percentage, or gauging it via the number of pageviews generated per session. An even better way would be to see how many instances Outbrain was responsible for starting, and then seeing how readily they turn into repeat visits.

By setting an objective in this manner, you’ll be able to tie the channel to its strength of building brand presence through compelling content, rather than judging it on hard and fast conversions that it isn’t built to do.

This is exactly the approach that we used for a client that was looking to drive registrations to their security event. As they had produced a lot of high quality blog content, it was used with Outbrain to deliver a high volume of users who had discovered it contextually.

It gave us a pool of users who we were confident would be interested in attending the event. AdWords was then used to specifically target those readers the next time they carried out another relevant search about the same issues and we were able to pick them off with highly targeted messages.

Obviously this is just one small example of how to integrate two distinct channels into one campaign. The same thought process can be applied to any number of channels, so long as you follow these takeaway pieces of advice:

  • Understand how each channel works, including the technology behind it
  • Think about how users interact with the channel, and thus the likely stage of the conversion cycle that they’re likely to encounter it
  • That in turn will allow you to describe what you expect users to do afterwards, enabling you to assign a measurement metric to it

Mun Yin Liu is Digital Media Director at Text100 and a contributor to SEW. 



via Search Engine Watch

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

How to Get SMS Alerts for Gmail via Twitter

How do you get SMS notifications on your mobile phone for important emails in your Gmail? Google doesn’t support text notifications for their email service but Twitter does. If we can figure out a way to connect our Twitter and Gmail accounts, the Gmail notifications can arrive as text on our mobile via Twitter. Let me explain:Twitter allows you to follow any @user via a simple SMS. They provide short codes for all countries (see list) and if you text FOLLOW to this shortcode following by the  username, any tweets from that user will arrive in your phone as text notifications. For instance, if you are in the US, you can tweet FOLLOW labnol to 40404 to get my tweets as text messages. Similarly, users in India can text FOLLOW labnol to 9248948837 to get the tweets via SMS.The short code service of Twitter can act as a Gmail SMS notifier. You create a new Twitter account, set the privacy to private and this account will send a tweet when you get a new email in Gmail. Follow this account …

Instagram Story links get 15-25% swipe-through rates for brands, publishers

Instagram may arrived late as a traffic source for brands and publishers, but it’s already showing early signs of success, driving new visitors to their sites and even outperforming its parent company, Facebook.For years brands, publishers and other have tried to push people from the Facebook-owned photo-and-video-sharing app to their sites. Outside of ads and excepting a recent test with some retailers, Instagram didn’t offer much help to companies looking to use it to drive traffic. So they had to find workarounds. They put links in their Instagram bios. They scrawled short-code URLs onto their pictures. And they typed out links in their captions.Then last month Instagram finally introduced an official alternative to these hacky workarounds: the ability for verified profiles to insert links in their Instagram Stories.Almost a month after the launch, 15% to 25% of the people who see a link in an Instagram Story are swiping on it, according to a handful of brands and publishers that h…

Five great tools to improve PPC ads

Every digital marketer wants to reach the top position on the search engine results. However, if you’ve recently launched a new website or your niche is saturated, starting with paid search ads sounds like a good idea.Strategically created PPC campaigns can drive leads, sales or sign-ups to your websites. You know what? In fact, businesses earn an average of $8 for every dollar they spend on Google Ads.Optimizing PPC campaigns is not easy, but it’s very powerful if you do it properly. Just like SEO, it is essential to conduct extensive keyword research, optimize ad copy, and design high-converting landing pages.Fortunately, there are a lot of effective PPC tools that will help you analyze your competitors’ PPC strategies, figure out tricks in their campaigns, and improve your PPC campaigns.If you are ready to take an evolutionary leap in your PPC advertising, take a look at my list of five amazing tools to save you time, give you crucial insights, and raise money for your business.Fiv…