Targeting Your Potential Customer Base With Google AdWords

Here’s a beginner’s guide to building buzz about your business on the web.

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The internet affords small-business owners countless opportunities to market their products and services. This is a blessing and a bit of a curse: While there are always new ways to spread the word about your company, the sheer volume of possibilities can be as daunting as it is exciting.

And while something like Facebook or email marketing may seem obvious, some of the most effective marketing tools are a little bit more obscure. For example, many non-marketers are unfamiliar with Google AdWords, despite it being one of the most tried-and-true means of building buzz on the web.

What is Google AdWords?
So, is Google AdWords a good fit for your business? Google AdWords is, most basically, an ad network. You bid on a keyword — which could be as simple as porta-potties or as complex as affordable portable restrooms in Charlotte — and, thus, for the chance to have your ad appear on a Google search result page (or another page within Google’s network) when people search for that term.

Getting an ad placed on Google, for people who are explicitly searching for your keyword, brings some big advantages. Obviously, Google is a huge platform with potentially great exposure. And Google AdWords allows for hypersensitive targeting: You can pay for your ads to appear only for highly select demographics within your targeted geographic range.

There are challenges, though. One big challenge is landing on the right keyword. Something as basic and generic as plumbing is going to prove so competitive (you’re basically competing with every other plumbing company on the internet) that it’s not going to deliver a very good return on your investment. Additionally, Google ads are quite small, so you have to be adept at writing savvy marketing content that links to a compelling landing page, making the most of limited space.

Is AdWords right for your business?
AdWords is a powerful tool, though not necessarily recommended for all businesses. With that said, AdWords is probably a good fit for your company if:

  • You’re selling a familiar product or service: something people know about and are therefore searching for online. (Most things in the home improvement and maintenance space fit this bill, for sure.)
  • You have a good business website that can convert traffic into paying customers.
  • You have a good sense of your demographics: who’s buying your products or services, the basic geographic range you serve, etc.

Getting started with AdWords
If you think you fit the criteria, why not start working with AdWords today?

Some things to consider as you begin:

  • You need to have a good sense of your goals. Most of the time, those will be driving traffic to the website and converting it into customers.
  • Come up with a solid list of keywords using your website, competitor websites and Google’s Keyword Research tool to help. Remember not to be too open-ended or generic.
  • Write different ad copy, and experiment with different ads; track which ads do best and which don’t get results.
  • Set an AdWords budget for the month and stick to it.
  • Always direct AdWords traffic to a landing page that’s ready to convert; for example, if you’re advertising to people looking for drain cleaning service, send them to the drain cleaning section on your website.

Head to Google and sign up for AdWords today, and see how much your company benefits from this additional avenue for traffic. 

About the Author
Amanda E. Clark is the president and editor-in-chief of Grammar Chic Inc., a full-service professional writing company. She is a published ghostwriter and editor, and currently under contract with literary agencies in Malibu, California, and Dublin, Ireland. Since founding Grammar Chic in 2008, Clark, along with her team of skilled professional writers, has offered expertise to clients in the creative, business and academic fields. The company accepts a wide range of projects and often engages in content and social media marketing, drafts resumes, press releases, Web content, marketing materials and ghostwritten creative pieces. Contact Clark at


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