How to optimise your AdWords campaigns the right way and stop wasting money

If you’ve set up an AdWords campaign and you’re not monitoring and optimising it constantly, you could be pouring money down the drain.

To make sure your investment pays off, you need to apply optimising tactics. By sticking to the fundamental rules of quality score, your campaigns can achieve the best results when your keywords enter Google’s auction.

This means you’ll get the lowest possible cost-per-click (CPC) and highest position ranking, effectively knocking off your competitors and earning the maximum amount of conversions your budget will allow.

How to optimise for the best quality score

Your quality score is made up of several factors, the most important of which is the relationship between the keyword, the ad copy, and the content on your landing page. Getting this right (or wrong) will determine your ad rank when you enter Google’s auction.
The diagram below compares different advertisers with different quality scores. The advertiser with the highest quality score will pay the lowest CPC, which generates more traffic for your budget.

Why you need fewer keywords

It’s important to start by controlling your ad groups. Each ad group should contain just one or two keywords. But most people use five to 10 keywords per ad group.

This is excessive: you can’t build effective ad copy with more than 10 different keywords. Creating separate ad groups for specific keywords lets you deliver custom messages, which is much more powerful.

Your advertising messages must contain the keywords. Matching your keyword/ad copy combinations as tightly as possible will increase your click-through rate (CTR), which will improve your quality score, and will eventually decrease your CPC. 

Why keyword research is so important

The Google AdWords Keyword Planner tool is important when building keyword lists. It’s a free tool that lets you source keywords that validate your ideas by providing search volumes and suggested bids. This is a great way to discover new keywords and provide reasoning for the keywords you select in your campaign.

However, don’t get carried away with this free feature. You still need to carefully place your keywords within specific ad groups that have specific ad messages.

If your keywords digress slightly, but are still within context of the product you’re selling, then you can create another ad group and craft ad messages around those keywords. It requires slightly more work, but the results can be well worth it.

Why campaign landing pages matter

Landing pages are a crucial element of inbound marketing strategies. According to, companies that have increased the number of landing pages from 10 to 15 see a 55 percent growth in the total number of leads. With this in mind, you need to consider multiple landing pages for the products you sell.

You may be thinking, creating 15 landing pages? Where am I going to find the time for this?

I know the feeling, but the hard part is really only done at the beginning when your developer codes the landing page. You can use the same design template again and again, and you just need to swap out the copy. So, don’t let that the notion of creating 15 different website pages scare you off. You just need to make sure each landing page contains the right keywords from your ad groups.

Here are some quick points you’ll need to consider to optimise your landing page:

  • place the keyword within the headline and meta description
  • use the keyword in the first paragraph
  • craft a message that highlights your unique selling points and what sets you apart from your competitors
  • focus on solving your visitor’s problem
  • include a strong call to action such as leading them to the contact form or shopping cart, or offering incentives to hand over their credit card or contact details
  • keep the lead generation form simple and easy to use.

How to use search terms and negative keywords effectively

If you use quite a few broad matched keywords then you’ll need to keep a close eye on the search terms people entered to find your advertisement. That’s because broad match keywords show results that broadly match up. So, for example, if someone searches for “security company”, Google will show results relating to home security and residential alarm systems along with IT security companies. This can result in the wrong people seeing your ad.

To avoid this waste of money, you can add “IT” as a negative keyword and monitor your search terms closely.

Using broad match keywords is still useful because it shows what people are searching for and what pages are coming up. You can use that information to build more campaign landing pages and increase your results.

So, while broad match keywords can lead to wastage if not monitored, another benefit to monitoring is that broad match keywords can open doors to other opportunities and give you valuable insight into what people are searching for. It requires daily monitoring and constant updating, but it’s free market research and will make your job easier and give you more ideas.

I don’t have time to manage my AdWords campaign!    

To effectively manage an AdWords campaign, you’ll need to spend roughly four hours per week and at least 30 minutes per day monitoring and optimising your campaign to get the best results.

The results can deliver strong marketing outcomes, so the time invested will pay off. For example, by following these rules, at Outsource, we took a property services company from achieving two conversions per month to more than 77 per month.

Contact us to find out more about how we can help you optimise your online advertising campaigns and dramatically improve your conversions.


Data denial

Most marketers grapple with data in all its forms every day. 

It’s flooding in from multiple sources in every organisation and it’s not getting easier to work with – in spite of the rise of marketing automation, salesforce automation, customer relationship management and financial management software.   AI and machine learning will add to the noise, generating more data and insights which need to be assessed and used or discarded depending on the context.

If anything, the reliance on these platforms has made data a master rather than a slave – and not a particularly benevolent one. 

The ability to damage brand, disenfranchise customers and lose prospects can be performed at a scale and velocity previously unimagined.  The wrong email to a customer database can be delivered in seconds. 

Not that long ago, in many industries, marketers didn’t need to know more than the basics when it came to data collection, management and use.  Arguably, FMCG has always been the exception where deep diving data streams from retail outlets was critical for carving out categories, driving sales, maintaining profit and informing product development. 

Today, as a marketer if you really can’t pull datasets apart and apply at least rudimentary analysis and management tools, it can be difficult to make a lasting difference in an organisation. 

Yet, in our experience, many marketers do struggle with data.  Keeping it clean and useable, the basic hygiene factors needed to make it useful, can seem unsurmountable when it simply floods into databases unchecked.

So what’s the answer?

Our short paper, Are you in data denial?, offers some practical pointers to get you heading in the right direction or at least baseline your own organisation’s approach to data control and management, particularly in relation to the marketing function. 

Are you making the most of your marketing automation software?

Are you making the most of your marketing automation software?
By Adam Benson, Outsource Director

I’ve reviewed marketing automation implementations inside companies many times as part of our strategy work only to find the system has been relegated to a very expensive one-dimensional email delivery platform.

Email is the one function most people can make work relatively easily and there are some useful statistics to be gleaned, but all the other benefits are being missed, making the ROI horrific.

Marketing Development Funds

Marketing Development Funds?
In 2013 and 2014 Outsource Channel Consulting Director, Kit Craig, lead the channel marketing team for IBM’s software business in Australia and New Zealand; a team with an annual MDF budget of around $1M supporting an overall channel business of just over $50M. Kit’s team was one of only three in IBM worldwide to fully utilise its MDF budget every quarter for those two years. While doing so, his team grew IBM’s software channel revenue derived from MDF by 85% in 2013 and 120% in 2014, and was recognised by IBM for leading two of the top three MDF campaigns worldwide.

In this blog he discusses the thorny problems many vendors and channel partners face in utilising vendor marketing development funds.

The most commonly missed step in making your products and services channel ready

The most commonly missed step in making your products and services channel ready
I love the excellent product quality today. We’re surrounded by technology that works well inside products that are generally well-designed. The vendors behind these technology products are mostly well-governed businesses that comply with our extensive consumer protection laws.

Perversely, that is often a problem when those same vendors want to sell their hardware, software and services through the indirect channel.

How do you know it’s time to hire a marketing manager?

How do you know it's time to hire a marketing manager?

By Adam Benson, Director

In the B2B sector it’s common to find businesses that have been successful without much focus on outbound marketing (by their own admission).
If you do a quick scan of their marketing there’s a ‘what we do’ kind of website, some designed company credentials documents, a PowerPoint deck for presenting to customers and prospects, maybe some data sheets that explain the range of services and a quoting or proposal template, possibly a customer newsletter and an on-again, off-again attempt at regular blogs or LinkedIn posts.

How selling your sofa could help with your B2B sales strategy

How selling your sofa could help with your B2B sales strategy

By Adam Benson, Outsource Director

My family recently moved house. We were packing up and trying to find a home for a few surplus items of furniture that won’t fit in the new place. As a result, I got the job of wrangling with eBay.

As I was trawling through my ‘selling’ list of larger, more costly items, it occurred to me that there are some good lessons to be learned when comparing this experience to lead generation for B2B companies.

Why is B2B content marketing important for your business?

B2B content marketing

Creating a content marketing strategy for your B2B business is easy and comes with many benefits. If you want to find out what content marketing is, the types of content marketing you can use, how you can use it in the B2B space, and the benefits you’ll reap from your efforts, read on.