Which Bidding Option Is Best Focused on Direct Response Marketing Goals?
In my previous article titled “What is the Best Bidding Strategy for advertisers?” I discussed two major choices to help a marketer to make the right choice when determining which bidding strategy to use for an advertiser-focused Direct Response Marketing (DRM) campaign. Specifically, I discussed how to define an appropriate bid and what type of strategy to use based on the type of target market, i.e. what geography. I also briefly touched on some of the major players in the game, how to bid for keywords and key phrases, and some cost saving ways to do so.
Today, in this article I want to discuss a different question that is commonly asked by those of us who are very concerned with cost per action (CPA) management in our campaigns: Which bidding option is best suited for an advertiser focused on direct response marketing goals? The short answer is this: any one of them. However, that answer may not be what you were thinking it was. In fact, it may surprise you to learn that one of the most cost effective ways to bid for keywords and key phrases is through contextual advertising.
Put simply, advertisers who understand the benefits of CPA can reach their target market with fewer dollars out of pocket than those who do not. In other words, a marketer who markets a product or service to a niche audience can reach those people more effectively through CPA than they could with traditional advertising and marketing. What is the difference? Contextual advertising targets the people already looking for that product or service. In other words, a marketer’s key goal is to get someone to “show up” at their website – or otherwise have their browsing experience optimized through the use of contextual advertising – in order to take advantage of the opportunity to market to that person.
An example of this would be a CPA network that features trueview video ads. A trueview video ad shows a still photograph in the frame of the web page that a visitor to your site might be more interested in at that moment. When you display advertising over a site like YouTube, for instance, you are inviting just about everyone to view the video advertisement (and therefore increasing your overall exposure) while you also gain access to potential new visitors. The trueview video ad differs from other types of contextual advertising in that it offers a unique opportunity to advertisers to reach a captive audience of potential customers: a group that has already demonstrated interest in the advertiser’s offer. The trueview video ads are designed to last just long enough that the potential customer must decide whether they want to see the advertiser again or not; if they click the ad, the advertiser will have achieved their goal.
The advantage to the CPA networks over preview ads in which there are no specific times to view ads are two-fold. With preview ads, the advertiser can only be seen during the active period of the ad (the exact time that the ad appears in YouTube). Because YouTube is an unpredictable medium, the ads in YouTube can be viewed at any time – even when the advertiser’s schedule in CPA networks is closed. Because of this advantage, the CPA networks are much more flexible with their criteria for acceptability of an ad and its scheduling. The real issue then becomes, how does one select the most effective and desirable times to run preview ads?
An advertiser needs to answer the question: what is the best time to run a video advertisement for my target market? After answering this question, the advertiser will be in a better position to determine which CPA network best suits their specific needs. The answer to the question: what is the best time to run a video advertisement for my target market? addresses how the advertiser balances their investment of time and money between the potential return on investment versus their investment of time and money in a single video advertisement.