Integrating PPC With Other Channels

This week Matt Umbro (@Matt_Umbro) hosts the first PPCChat of 2017 with a great question set titled “Integrating Pay-Per-Click With Other Channels.” The following is the transcribed Streamcap from the live chat:

Q1: At this point, do you include some sort of attribution in your reporting/client meetings? Why or why not?

  • Yes but only as it applies to the client’s goals and bottom line. Often times longer trends need to be looked at for lift. – Gil Hong (@_GilHong)
  • Attribution should be handled at the agency level. Don’t make clients think – give them best estimates on what to attribute. – Doug Thomas (@ferkungamaboobo)
  • I always find I want to answer every question by asking what the question is trying to mean. So, here goes: attribution of what? – Steve Gibson (@stevegibsonppc)
    • Attribution modeling/conversion paths/assisted conversions. – Matt Umbro
  • Yes, but it’s more of a high-level view, but I think it’s important to at least reference. – Matt Umbro
  • Certain clients have requested to see the conversion path reports on a monthly basis. Helps them understand bigger picture. – Joe Martinez (@MilwaukeePPC)
  • Yes, even if I’m not responsible for the other channels. It it doesn’t always make me friends. – Steve Hammer (@armondhammer)
  • Attribution from agency side will NEVER align with what client-side data says, and can cause friction if wildly different. – Doug Thomas
  • I pull attribution data for my clients when they care to see it. Otherwise, I look at it and bring it up when relevant. – Jacob Baadsgaard (@jakebaadsgaard)
  • Provide information if it is useful & if reasonably confident in its veracity. MUST contextualize though! – Julie Bacchini (@NeptuneMoon)
  • I will talk about it sometimes, but I work mainly with small biz owners who have limited bandwidth for the details. – Meg Hartmann (@smartwordmktg)
  • 2016 was the year I began doing this. It’s too important to ignore anymore & gives bigger picture than just last click can. – Kirk Williams (@PPCKirk)
  • Absolutely, We never look only at Paid Search Channels. It is skewed data that only tells a portion of the story. – Maria Corcoran (@mariacorcoran)
  • I reference attribution WHENEVER I can but like Meg Hartmann said, I need to decide what they can process. Pros &cons of info. – Tim Halloran (@timhalloran)
  • I have tiptoed into this in cases where I see a positive impact but not direct leads and sales. Most of my clients are SMB with small budgets. Leaving attribution out could hurt their bottom line. – Steve Slater (@TheSteve_Slater)
  • That said, other attribution models DO trend in a similar manner. If you are looking at actuals vs trends it is impt info. – Maria Corcoran
  • YES particularly when trying to steer newer clients towards more appropriate models (i.e. not last-click). – Colleen McCaskell (@SpitfirePPC)
  • Yes for those clients who can understand it and are set up for it. Not all are. – Melissa Mackey (@Mel66)
    • This is a great point. Unfortunately, not all clients are setup well for it, which can sometimes over complicate reporting. – Matt Mason (@MattMasonPPC)
  • Attribution can be used to paint a better story than reality, for example by incuding assist conversions. Your client may call BS. – Frederick Vallaeys (@siliconvallaeys)
    • I agree on that front – it helps tells a story but isn’t the be all end all. – Matt Umbro
  • In-house answer: Yes. It’s easier to explain with my smaller team the farther we dig into data. – Brooke Townsend (@btownsend13)
  • Yes, always. Although attribution data comes in many forms, sometimes qualitative based on answers to pre-meeting check-in’s. – Mark Sullivan (@mpsulli)
  • Attribution is key to long-term success. If we don’t know what is attributing to the conv, we can’t build a proper funnel. – Michael Knight (@MichaelAKnight)

Q2: Do you coincide PPC efforts with offline events (i.e. Store openings, sponsorships, etc)? How so? And furthermore, do you push your clients to let you know of offline events?

  • Considering I’m 100% e-commerce, no. But I’d like to think that I would! – Brooke Townsend
  • We typically highlight things like this with ad copy and extensions. – Davis Baker (@davisbaker)
  • Absolutely, in fact, whenever I see a spike in paid search traffic I try to point it back to an offline event. Perfect example, we work with a client who drops a catalog at various points – whenever it drops, we ensure we have extra budget. – Matt Umbro
  • Yes. I generally tie that in with branded campaigns. It depends on the event. Especially when I see opp for growth. – Steve Slater
  • We have coordinated with Superbowl ads or Co. Events (Summit/Max/Symposiums) etc. Goals are very diff, but can be effective. – Maria Corcoran
  • Yes. Booth convention or in-store promotions with specific ad-only codes has helped gauge the worth of those campaigns. – Joe Martinez
  • PPC can work really well for events/conf/tradeshows, using localized targeting for either brand awareness or special offers. – Michael Knight
  • Events yes, but mainly for any traffic lifts or competitive increases. – Gil Hong
  • Yes. Paid search & social for events – works great if done right. – Melissa Mackey
  • No, product advertising only here. Co-op funds that were for events are now funneled to ad spend. – David Cox (@dcoxdesigns)
  • Sometimes. Typically store events where the budget won’t be judges on ecom sales. – Andrew McGarry
  • This is another area where RLSA can come in handy. – Steve Slater
  • YES! Access to marketing calendars is key! – Gil Hong
  • The goals are usually more focused on visibility, registrations for event, messaging reinforcement, SOV vs direct units sold. – Maria Corcorcan
  • I always try to have my clients inform me of any good PR they get so we can annotate it and review performance changes. – Joe Martinez
  • I always want to know what else is happening for the brand to be able to look for correlations. – Julie Bacchini
  • Not many of my clients have offline events, but I do ask about similar special situations. Remarketing can help here. – Meg Hartmann
  • Rarely a pure search effort, but often display/PR. Annotate and combine. Classic of first touch to later conversion. – Steve Hammer
  • Absolutely. Especially around Tradeshow season for our Agriculture clients. It works really well for both Search and Social. – Dan Nicholson
  • Facebook is my fave for offline events. And online events, to be fair. – Colleen McCaskell
  • I’ll theorize in the conclusion section if I know certainly what offline event impacted it, but I don’t T-test it or anything. – Tim Halloran
  • You have to coordinate with big offline events, if not, the buzz you generate will lead to more sales for your competitors. Frederick Vallaeys

Q3: Do you utilize Customer Match more than you did a year ago? Why or why not? If so, how are your results?

  • Using it a LOT in social not really at all in search. It is a great way to target in social. – Steve Slater
  • More often than not have hurdles client-side with access and segmentation of lists. – Gil Hong
    • Exactly. Or the emails don’t match (personal emails /= business emails). We can hardly ever use them. – Melissa Mackey
  • It’s been a no brainer when clients can actually get us the data. – Davis Baker
  • I’m going to utilize for the first time this month on one of my accounts, pretty pumped to see how it pans out. – Matt Mason
  • Definitely more. It’s just getting the lists that’s the hard part. Segmentation is even harder to get from them. – Joe Martinez
  • Trouble here getting clients even with a list. – Jennifer Denney (@Denney01)
  • Yes! After creating buyer personas to find who we wanted to reach, we’ve had great results. – Jacob Baadsgaard
  • I’ve used them, but often times it’s more of a hassle getting the list, then segmenting. But having said this, it’s definitely worth testing. – Matt Umbro
  • Confession: my main impetus to get going on these was the lack of ability to use Remarketing audiences in Gmail Ads campaigns. – Colleen McCaskell
  • In adwords, it’s been pretty disappointing – just not finding it’s having enough of an impact. Better in social. – Steve Gibson
  • Let’s be honest – social is miles ahead of search for demographic or matching type targeting. – Julie Bacchini
  • I use Customer Match all the time. Great for exclusions lists and lookalikes. – Michelle Morgan (@michellemsem)
    • I’ve never thought about using them as exclusions! Might be something worth doing for myself. – Brooke Townsend
      • Heck yeah! They’re customers. Get outta my campaigns! – Michelle Morgan
    • I’ve been testing lookalike audiences from customer lists in Facebook. Much better than regular lookalikes. – Joe Martinez
    • So, if you already have their emails, is PPC necessarily best way to close them? Love exclusion idea! – Julie Bacchini
  • Display is a different animal and great for building awareness. Have to stick with it though. – Julie Bacchini
  • Due to the sheer number of customers needed TO match, it is a difficult process to get enough traffic. – Michael Knight
  • More. Lots of conversation on strategy for CM vs behavioral or onboarded audiences. – Maria Corcoran
  • I’ve never used Customer Match it but I’m definitely going to consider it based off some of the answers. – Dan Nicholson (@DanNicholson204)
  • I find CRM retargeting through other platforms to be more successful – both on web and even moreso on social. – Michael Knight

Q4: Do you find that clients buy into attribution or are still primarily last click focused? Why?

  • 95% “buy in” if they are educated on it well. Who doesn’t want to understand better how their channels work together? – Kirk Williams
  • I would say 85% of all campaigns are optimized to last click but more & more people are looking at reporting data w/attribution. – Maria Corcoran
  • My direct client contacts do, not always their bosses. – Matt Umbro
  • If client doesn’t buy in, they’re either (1) thinking incorrectly, (2) need more time to digest, or (3) we sucked at educating. – Kirk Williams
    • This is so good. I find often times that really what’s happening is that I’m not doing a good enough job of educating. – Matt Mason
  • Most are last click focused in terms of goals, but understand there are larger impacts. It’s accounted for when goals are made. – Michelle Morgan
  • I find clients are sometimes very interested to hear about campaigns doing well under 1st touch attribution. – Meg Hartmann
  • Last click is the most tangible, and easiest for client to grasp. Hope as tech improves, ability to use more will too. – Julie Bacchini
  • Can take awhile but most turnaround. It takes effort to educate them on conversion paths and multiple touchpoints. – Joe Martinez
  • Frankly I’m surprised at the number of clients who need to be coaxed away from last-click models. – Colleen McCaskell
  • In the past, I’ve made them doubt the validity of attri by poor communication. This is your ROI but also this could, and this. It needs to be explained without casting doubt but illuminating better information. – Tim Halloran
  • Attribution can be very 1-sided. We show how PPC helps other channels, but do we show how other channels led to PPC conversions? – Joe Martinez
  • Clients arent focused on anything but money. Attribution models, esp out-of-the-box ones, are meaningless in absense of revenue. – Doug Thomas
  • I find they definitely want to know when campaigns bring in good traffic but other campaigns or channels get the sale. – Meg Hartmann
  • I see advertisers who don’t care about last click or attribution. They just want the phone to ring and get sales. – Frederick Vallaeys
  • As agencies though, to get these sales we need to start to look beyond last click. – Frederick Vallaeys

Q5: For anyone working with brick and mortar locations, do you have a way to track online traffic to in-store visits? How? 

  • I’ll look at the AdWords in-store visit metric, but it’s like attribution, more for me to review and take into account. – Matt Umbro
  • We use coupon codes, mention this ad for…, sometimes we even just ask where they found us. – Jacob Baadsgaard
    • Good point, coupon codes that you can only get through paid search. – Matt Umbro
  • Coupon codes are all I’ve ever been able to get for information. I’d love to see what some of the big-box stores get. – Joe Martinez
  • No ecomm accounts right now, but do have service accounts (e.g. Physiotherapy) & I use CallRail to track the # of appointments. – Dan Nicholson
  • The other thing to look at is visits to the “find store/location” page or “location search” and track that in analytics. – Tim Mayer (@timmayer)
  • Exclusive coupon codes/special offers for in-store purchases. By either LP sign up or direct PPC LP. – Michael Knight

Q6: SHOULD cross-channel attribution play more of a role in reporting and measuring results? Why or why not?

  • Yes. All marketing works together and having a cross-channel and continuity strategy is key to long-term, overall biz success. – Michael Knight
  • Absolutely. Always want data to be as clean/clear as possible. – Michelle Morgan
  • I.e., should we educate clients & strive for more accurate reporting to identify accurate channel profitability? Yes! – Kirk Williams
  • Yes. It’s important to know what all channels are doing to some capacity, and how they affect overall business goals. – Joe Martinez
  • Definitely. PPC does not work in isolation, & it’s crucial to showing the true value of your work. – Meg Hartmann
  • Should we strive to find what source in funnel gives value, & not just the last source someone stumbled into the site on? – Kirk Williams
  • A cross-channel, integrated approach should be the goal. Getting that to be reality can be varying degrees of hard though. – Julie Bacchini
  • Yes, it’s indispensable for any long sales cycle in which numerous digital channels work in tandem over time to close the deal. – Colleen McCaskell
  • If investing in full funnel..I use attribution to inform bidding/spend- more on first & last interaction & optimize in between. – Tim Mayer


More PPCChats

Don’t forget to stay tuned for the next #PPCchat on Tuesday at 12 noon Eastern, 9 am Pacific and 5pm in the UK. Same Chat time, same Chat channel.


Check out the PPCChat Twitter list to see and connect with all current and prior participants.

• Matt Umbro (@Matt_Umbro)
• Paul Kragthorpe (@PaulKragthorpe)
• Brooke Townsend (@btownsend13)
• Colleen McCaskell (@SpitfirePPC)
• Dan Nicholson (@DanNicholson204)
• David Cox (@dcoxdesigns)
• Davis Baker (@davisbaker)
• Doug Thomas (@ferkungamaboobo)
• Frederick Vallaeys (@siliconvallaeys)
• Gil Hong (@_GilHong)
• Jacob Baadsgaard (@jakebaadsgaard)
• Jennifer Denney (@Denney01)
• Joe Martinez (@MilwaukeePPC)
• Julie Bacchini (@NeptuneMoon)
• Kirk Williams (@PPCKirk)
• Maria Corcoran (@mariacorcoran)
• Mark Sullivan (@mpsulli)
• Matt Mason (@MattMasonPPC)
• Meg Hartmann (@smartwordmktg)
• Melissa Mackey (@Mel66)
• Michael Knight (@MichaelAKnight)
• Michelle Morgan (@michellemsem)
• Steve Gibson (@stevegibsonppc)
• Steve Hammer (@armondhammer)
• Steve Slater (@TheSteve_Slater)
• Tim Halloran (@timhalloran)
• Tim Mayer (@timmayer)

Integrating PPCChat with a Blog Post = Streamcaps

This is a guest post by Paul Kragthorpe; works at WebRanking in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Connect with Paul @PaulKragthorpe, and Google Plus.

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