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A Search Marketer’s Survival Kit

A Search Marketer’s Survival Kit

By   April 1st, 2020

These are challenging times. Fortunately, as a group of experienced performance marketers, we have a set of tools that we can rely on when supply and demand greatly change. Whether it is Black Friday, National Pizza Day, or the CEO emailing you a screenshot of Google search results with your ad nowhere in sight, we can help you make quick adjustments. 

COVID is certainly a unique event, with no clear timeline–so how do you adapt? The answer uses the same techniques as any other promotion or event. The following list of strategies and tasks will help update your account for the current climate. Get the fundamentals right and your search campaign should stay healthy. 

Campaigns

  • Automated Alerts – Performance changes daily. Receive an email from Marin showing Campaigns/Groups/Keywords that have realized a significant change in spend and conversions across all of your channels Google, Bing, Amazon, Facebook. 
  • Negative Keywords – New events can trigger new searches. Ensure to keep a close eye on Search Query Reports. Marin provides your Google and Bing search query results in the same view and allows you to add negatives to both publishers at the same time. Go to the Keyword Expansion tab in Marin to view and manage.
  • Day Parting – People’s schedules have changed, which may also impact online behavior. Review recent data and implement a day-parting strategy or revisit any pre-existing bid multipliers. Marin will make a recommendation with a click of a button.
  • Scheduled Actions – New announcements are made daily, often days before they go into effect. Stay tuned into events affecting the geo locations your campaigns are opted into. Schedule the Activation or Pausing of Campaigns/Groups/Creatives. 
  • Sitelinks – The most efficient way to adjust your messaging or highlight a new offering is to add a new sitelink. These can quickly be added across campaigns. 
  • Budgets – Because search patterns have been changing, you might be running into budget limits on parts of your accounts. Please keep an eye on campaigns maxing out their daily budgets and make adjustments where necessary.

Bidding

Marin bidding will consider the most recent data and calculate bids for each keyword based on the recent performance performance accordingly, allowing for quick responsiveness during this volatile climate. The following detail bid strategies and features we can leverage if anticipating significant changes in performance:

  • Targets – Marin bidding will automatically adjust for changing conversion rates, but if a conversion today is not worth the same as it was yesterday, you should also consider adjusting your targets to match the current environment.
  • Boost – Set a bid multiplier across the folders. This will allow you to quickly bid down or bid up KWs in the folder while keeping your original bid in place. When the event is over, simply remove the boost and bids will return to normal. Calculate the boost by calculating the difference between the historical conversion rate by the anticipated conversion rate ((Historical CVR – Anticipated CVR)/Historical CVR). 
  • Folder Forecasting –  You may have been asked to reduce spend for the month or next. Marin will recommend and implement performance targets based on budget. If reducing spend, use Marin’s What-If feature to input your budget and Marin will make recommendations on how to change the target and hit your target spend. You can then select “Apply Recommendations” to quickly apply those targets. This can be found in the Optimization>Select “Forecasting” slider button area.
  • Dynamic Actions – Similar to boost, a unique bid multiplier can be applied to a Campaign/Group/KW by assigning values to a Dimension and applying a bidding rule. This can be useful for making targeted adjustments on specific parts of your account without having the change your folder structure.
  • Bid Override – If there are certain keywords to be managed manually, a keyword can be placed on bid override from the key tab while the remaining keywords in the campaign or group remain on automated bidding.

In addition to all of these strategies, Marin is happy to announce our “Expert Assist” offering, providing our customers with account audits that will provide 50+ insights and health checks. Whether your marketing program has cut budgets, adjusted your headcount, is in the middle of re-evaluating your strategy, or in some cases, is seeing new trends with your sales, please consider us an extension of your team. Our decades of digital marketing experience can help you navigate through this unprecedented time. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to us if you need further help!