A lot of SEO experts will tell you that the best way to promote your blog or website is by doing everything generically using on-site and off-site SEO. Yes, a good SEO strategy executed correctly will make a huge difference, but that doesn’t mean you can’t speed things up by using paid advertising and promotions. SEO has always been about investing your time or your money to gain exposure. In this article, we are going to go through some of the best tips on how to use advertising to elevate your blog to a completely new level.
Set a Budget
I can’t stress this enough: always set a budget before starting any form of SEM or paid advertising campaign. Setting a budget is important for two very important reasons. First, you will know exactly how much you can afford to spend to promote your website. This is a good starting point for your advertising campaign.
You will also know the suitable ROI (Return on Investment) to expect from the campaign based on the budget you have, allowing you to set realistic goals, choose the right ads to place and many more. Having a clear budget in mind is just as important when you are working with agencies or SEO companies to help you manage everything.
Paid advertising for promoting blogs and websites doesn’t have to be expensive at all. I’ve seen site owners with as little as £50 per month develop very successful websites through paid advertising and SEM. As long as you have a clear budget in mind, you are good to go.
Save from the Start
There are ways to save on paid advertising and SEM, and some of them can be used even before you start your campaign:
- Hosting companies and domain name registrars often give free advertising credits as part of their service packages. When you use a shared hosting plan, for instance, you can get up to £500 worth of AdWords, Facebook Ads and various other ad credits to use. To save on SEM and paid advertising, read more about these freebies and consider them carefully when choosing a hosting service to use.
- Seek discounts and special offers every time you want to make a deposit or start a new campaign. The market for paid ads is as competitive as ever, so it is not difficult to find a good coupon code to use. Sign up for newsletters and get updates on the latest deals regularly. Google AdWords, for example, recently offered $450 worth of advertising credit to select users through its newsletter.
- Find bundles and work with ad agencies. You are paying a relatively small amount of fee when you choose to use an SEO company or ad agency to manage your campaigns. In return, however, you may get better deals on advertising opportunities, which means you can save more on paid ads.
Know Your Audience
Nothing is worse than spending money on campaigns that don’t work. Before you start your own paid advertising campaign, be sure to know your audience. Ask these questions to get started:
- Who are my audience?
- Which ad networks reach them the best? (i.e. if your users are on Facebook, Facebook Ads will work better than Twitter Ads.)
- Which keywords are they searching for the most?
- What are they looking for from my site, products or services?
These are just the basics, but they will help you understand the kind of ads you need to place and where to place them. At the very least, you will have a good foundation for your promotional campaign.
If your users are based in a particular country – for example, when your blog is in German – you can develop your campaign to target that specific region. This means using ad networks that operate in the area, targeting keywords that local users search more and fine-tuning the campaign to work with that particular market segment.
I might be oversimplifying a little bit, but these tips will help you get started. The more you know your audience, the more effective your campaign will be.
Set (Realistic) Goals
Last but not least, have a set of goals to reach with your advertising campaign. You can get thousands – even millions – of leads through paid advertising, as long as you have the budget for a suitable, effective campaign. The sky – or in this case, the cloud – is the limit.
However, keep your goals realistic. Look at your budget for advertising and calculate the right amount of return you can expect from the campaign accordingly. Evaluate your goals and the campaign itself regularly. Are you getting the traffic you are aiming for? Are the new users engaging with your site well? As your campaign grows more mature, your ROI will also improve.