PPC, Management, and Why You Shouldn’t Always Mimic Success

There’s an adage in the business world that says “find someone that’s succeeding in your industry and copy them.” It’s true in most circumstances — naturally, you won’t have their budget, but hopefully you shouldn’t be plagued with the kinds of problems they currently have, while their current solutions will be to the problems you’re facing today. There are, however, major exceptions. One of them in the area of PPC. Management types in big companies often go in large for pay-per-click marketing. They spend huge bucks on it because they need results that happen this quarter.

If they wait until next quarter, see, they might not have their jobs anymore. Business at the C_O level is just that volatile — you never know where you’re going to work next quarter. Investing in any long-term programs that will show a profit in six months, much less five years, is going to result in some schlub you’ve never met crediting his recent “Let’s replace all the mops with fuzzy little dogs” program for the company’s windfall.

That’s why 80% of the money spend on SEM is spent on PPC, even though SEO accounts for 80% of the results — because C_Os aren’t worried about results as much as they’re interested in results they can take credit for.

If you’re a small business owner, you don’t want to drop huge bucks on PPC management like the big boys do. A little PPC is wise, because it helps you get the traffic flowing quickly — but you want to balance it with an equal or greater amount of local internet marketing and SEO. You might be interested in instant results, but it should be more important to you to guarantee that you’re still in business in five years — and relying strictly on PPC isn’t a good recipe for that.

A blend is the best path for most of America’s small Internet-savvy business. The PPC gets you off the ground and gets some initial traffic as the SEO builds — and then a year later, as the SEO starts to build traffic, the PPC can slowly be decreased each month so that by the end of the second year, you’re entirely on SEO and your PPC budget is no more. That’s the safest path to Internet business success.