I absolutely love search advertising. Give me a couple of months and a significant amount of data from it and I can maximize its conversion performance to a level that most people will never be able to achieve. But increasingly that level of maximum performance from search quite honestly isn’t enough for our business clients selling to other businesses online, especially in high tech niches. It didn’t used to be so difficult, but things have changed.
Competing Against the Ham-Fisted Bidder
As an agency in the B2B space we are very conscientious about generating leads and generating them at an affordable cost per lead (the cost per lead obviously can’t be more than the value of the eventual sale). We absolutely know what an acceptable cost per lead is for our clients, and we have a pretty good idea of what a competitor’s likely range of cost per lead is.
Our belief is that the competition in many (possibly most) cases in B2B segments is ignoring the idea of profitable advertising. Quite frequently ego and not success metrics guides these decisions. Being number one for the keyword is valued more than the results that clicks on that keyword delivers. We believe that for the most part that the managers of these accounts are not experienced at managing search advertising accounts, or don’t have sufficient time to devote to it.
All of these factors combine to either make your costs per click way too high to meet your cost per lead goals or force you to lower your ad position and in order to meet cost per lead goals while at the same time significantly decreasing your lead volume.