Living the Agency Life: Account Manager Tips For Managing Up and Down

Posted by on May 22, 2017 in Advertising
Living the Agency Life: Account Manager Tips For Managing Up and Down

As an account manager at Seer Interactive, my job is to manage success for my clients through PPC. While client success is at the forefront, there’s a lot that goes on behind the scenes besides the performance driven aspects of the account (analyzing, strategizing, and implementing).

Having strong internal management skills can make all the difference between meeting expectations and deadlines for production-level colleagues to making sure you are seen as a valued and growing member of the team by your boss.

While your company may be set up differently, the following tips are what I use to make sure internal management (up and down) doesn’t interfere with client management.

Do you know what your teammates’ primary motivating factor is or their career goals?

Maybe they are motivated by kudos or opportunities, or let’s just be frank, promotion and bonuses! Knowing what motivates your teammates can be key in what kind of work excites them, causes them dread, or may be needed to help advance them in their career.

When one of my support associates identified that creating new Excel processes was an area of stress for them, I made sure to spend a little extra time walking through methodology and writing more detailed work instructions for them. This helped save time in the long run from being asked frequent questions and helped them level up their skill.

What kind of workflow processes suit them best?

When managing colleagues, knowing what format and vehicle of feedback can make all the difference in getting things done in an efficient and delegated manner versus having constant interruptions that disrupt concentration and deep work.

For myself, in-person interruptions can cause me to lose my concentration on my own tasks so I usually reserve time at the start of a task for questions or set the expectation that follow-ups need to be typed out in an email or project management tool versus in-person.

talk to me

The same goes for managing up to your boss to be considerate of their time and tasks by working and communicating in a way that facilitates their workflow.

Do you hold regular 1:1’s to provide/receive feedback?

Setting up 1:1 time with the people you directly work with can add context to issues, realign priorities, and set goals. Having this scheduled on a regular cadence (I typically do once a week or every other) even as optional, opens the door for communication if the need arises.

This time should be used constructively, even when discussing areas of improvement. The same can be said with establishing 1:1’s with your boss in order to take the initiative for past mistakes and turning them into learnings that can benefit the company in the long run.

Goal setting can also be key in documenting and demonstrating growth. It is important to identify and set SMART goals (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-based) to track results and provide follow up. Even if you have a goal that doesn’t exactly fit into the SMART model, what are the sub-goals that can be set to mark your progress?

Closing Thoughts

Ultimately your mileage may vary when it comes to executing the above tips (or maybe your Agency already trains and implements these for all managers!). Internal management skills may not be as glamorous as client management work, but can make a big difference in how effective you are at it.

Got any tips for how you manage up and manage down effectively? Hit me up on twitter @_GilHong


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50 Essential Social Media Advertising Stats

Posted by on May 19, 2017 in Advertising, Social
50 Essential Social Media Advertising Stats

There are a lot of things people say about social media advertising. Some say it works only for B2C businesses, others that they work only for small ones. Some even dare to say social media advertising isn’t effective at all.

None of that is true. Social media advertising works.

How do I know that? Because there’s a long list of stats that prove my point.

Don’t let yourself be guided by what other people say. Read the rest of this article and see how social media advertising really works.


1. In 2016, Facebook made $26.2 billion dollars in revenue from their ads system, 95% of their total revenue. It also boasts a massive $19.81 average revenue per user in the U.S. and Canada. – Techcrunch

2. Facebook dominates the social network ad spending market worldwide by accounting for more than 65% of the total. – eMarketer

3. In Q4 2015, the company had 50 million active business pages on its platform while only 6% of them actively advertise. – Facebook

4. Facebook has 4 million active advertisers. – Facebook

5. 70% of Facebook’s advertisers are outside the U.S., while a vast majority are small businesses. – CNBC

6. Facebook is the fourth most effective social media platform to deliver content (both paid and organic), with a 41% effectiveness rate. – Linkedin

7. 78% of marketers are satisfied with their Facebook ads. – Contently

8. 52% of B2C marketers consider Facebook marketing to be more effective, while only 38% B2B marketers do so. – Social Media Examiner

9. 56% of B2C marketers have indicated that Facebook ads have helped them generate revenue for their business.  – MarketingProfs

B2C marketers generating revenue from Pinterest via

Source: MarketingProfs

10. 57% of the advertising budget of companies is dedicated to mobile. – Kinetic Social

11. Images are responsible for 75 to 90% of an ad’s performance on Facebook. – Source

12. A Facebook video receives, on average, 135% more organic reach than a Facebook photo. – Socialbakers

13. Over 70% percent of marketers plan to increase their use of video ads next year. – Mixpo

14. 44% of SMB owners and marketers plan to put money behind video content on Facebook in 2017. – Animoto

15. According to one study, the average click-through rate of a Facebook ad is 0.9% and the average cost-per-click is $0.64. – Adweek

16. Compared to regular web advertising, Facebook desktop ads have 8.1x higher click-through rates while mobile ads have 9.1x higher click-through rates. – MarketingLand

17. Link Ads are most popular kind of Facebook ad. – SmartInsights

18. The most effective length for an ad title on Facebook is 4 words, and 15 words for a link description. – SmartInsights


Facebook ads’ popularity and usage among businesses is growing fast. Still, 94% of Facebook pages don’t use them, so there’s a lot of room for growth.

Add images or videos to your ads as they have higher reach and effectiveness. Also, target your ads to mobile, as it takes a big part of most advertisers’ budget. That’s likely caused by the fact most people use Facebook with their mobile as well as the costs are lower.

Last but not least, use ad titles with 4 words and link description with 15 words. If possible, use link ads.


19. Instagram has 600 million users, 400 of which use it daily. This surpasses Twitter and Snapchat’s daily usage. – Statista

20. By 2017, Instagram’s global mobile ad revenues will reach $2.81 billion, accounting for over 10% of parent company Facebook’s global ad revenues. – eMarketer

instagram mobile ad revenus worldwide via

Source: eMarketer

21. 48.8% of brands are on Instagram. By 2017, this is predicted to rise to 70.7%. If we only look at the top 100 brands in the world, 90% have an Instagram account. – eMarketer and SimplyMeasured

22. Nearly three quarters of American companies with 100 employees or more will turn to Instagram for marketing purposes in 2017.– eMarketer

23. 29% of B2B marketers use Instagram.  – Content Marketing Institute

24. 63% of B2C marketers are more likely to increase their investment in Instagram ads than 48% of B2B marketers. – Social Media Examiner

25. Only 36% of marketers use Instagram, leaving you plenty of space to reach out and engage with the audience. – Selfstartr

36% of marketers use Instagram via

Source: Selfstartr

26. 52% of marketers plan to increase their use of Instagram in 2015. – Social Media Examiner

27. Over a third of Instagram users have used their mobile to purchase a product online– making them 70% more likely to do so than non-users. – Global Web Index

28. Instagram users spend on average $65 per referred sale. In comparison, Facebook users spend $55, and the average referred sale from Twitter is just $46.26. – Shopify

average order value by social network via

Source: Shopify

29. 75% of Instagram users take action, such as visiting a website, after looking at an Instagram advertising post. – Shopify

30. 50% of Instagram users follow at least one business while 60% say that they learn about a product or service on the platform after looking at an Instagram advertising post. – Instagram

31. Ad recall from sponsored posts on Instagram is 2.9x higher than Nielsen’s norms for online advertising. – Instagram


Instagram isn’t used as much by B2B businesses, but it’s still an effective paid channel that’s growing in popularity, especially among big brands.

Instagram is a perfect channel if you run an e-commerce store, as most Instagram users tend to act after looking at an advertisement. Also, the average spend per user and the intent of purchase are higher than other social media channels.

If you don’t run an e-commerce business, Instagram can still be highly effective to increase ad recall.


32. LinkedIn is used by 94% of B2B marketers. – Content Marketing Institute

33. LinkedIn is the most effective social media platform to deliver content (both paid and organic), with an 82% effectiveness rate. – LinkedIn

effectiveness of social media channels via

Source: LinkedIn

34. Even though Facebook is the most important social network to marketers overall, LinkedIn is the top choice for B2B marketers—41% say it’s the most important network they use. – V3 Broadsuite Blog

35. Just 18% of B2B SMB marketers are using LinkedIn ads. These same marketers are using Facebook ads at a rate of 75%. – Social Media Examiner

36. LinkedIn generates more leads for B2B companies than Facebook, Twitter or blogs individually. – Inside View


As expected, LinkedIn is used mostly by B2B marketers. For some reason, however, most of these marketers work for larger businesses, while most small business B2B marketers focus on Facebook. Still, if you work for a B2B business, LinkedIn would be one of your safest bets.

LinkedIn works best for lead generation and its effectiveness rate is the highest of all social networks.


37. Twitter has an active user base of 130,000 advertisers. – VentureBeat

38. Twitter is used by 84% of B2B marketers. – Content Marketing Institute

39. 88% of B2B marketers in North America use Twitter for content distribution. – DMR

40. Twitter is the second most effective social media platform to deliver content (both paid and organic), with a 66% effectiveness rate. – LinkedIn

41. 25% of Twitter advertising budgets are dedicated to mobile, and 89% of Twitter’s Q1 revenue in 2015 came from mobile. – Infini Datum

42. Promoted tweets have been attributed to a 29% increase of offline sales. – Twitter

43. In 2014, 80% of U.S. marketers use promoted Tweets. eMarketer

44. People who see video ads on Twitter are 50% more likely to be aware of the advertiser’s brand, feel 14% more favorable about the brand, and had 18% higher purchase intent (versus those not exposed to video ads). – Twitter

video ads of Twitter improve brand metrics via

Source: Twitter


Despite what some may think, Twitter is used by a great majority of B2B marketers. This has to do with its effectiveness to deliver content, which is the second highest among all social networks.

Twitter video ad campaigns drive positive shifts in key brand metrics for advertisers.


45. YouTube is used by 74% of B2B marketers. – Content Marketing Institute

B2B social media platforms usage via

Source: Content Marketing Institute

46. YouTube is the third most effective social media platform to deliver content (both paid and organic), with an 64% effectiveness rate. – LinkedIn

47. When it comes to deciding what to buy, 6 in 10 YouTube subscribers prefer to follow the advice of their favorite creator over their favorite TV or movie personality. This paid relationship would work like an ad, but not a direct one. – ThinkWithGoogle

48. 71% of businesses with more than 100 employees use YouTube. – Social Media Examiner

49. 48% of marketers plan to add YouTube to their content strategy in 2017. – Hubspot

50. YouTube’s net U.S. video ad revenues account for 18.9% of the U.S. digital video ad market. – eMarketer


YouTube is the second largest search engine in the world. If you have video ads, use them on YouTube, even if you work in a B2B industry.

Using YouTube with the Display Network to promote your video ads isn’t the only way you can foster its power. You should look to partner with influencers to promote your business. Also, instead of trying to make a sale right away, focus on teaching people, which will increase your engagement and relevancy.


In this article you have learned the real power of social media advertising. As you have seen, all of the 5 social media networks shown here are highly effective for any kind of business. It’s still true, however, that some work best for certain kinds of businesses than others. That’s why you need to choose the one that are most relevant to your needs.

Now it’s your turn. Which of the 5 social media channels shown here have you used to promote your business? Which have been the most effective of all?

Important Things to Know about YouTube Shopping Campaigns

Posted by on May 18, 2017 in Advertising, Agency
Important Things to Know about YouTube Shopping Campaigns

People are now watching an average of 1 billion hours a day on YouTube. Besides being an extremely effective branding channel, you can also work on getting direct revenue straight from YouTube. It’s all possible by creating TrueView shopping campaigns.

It’s hard to believe this campaign type is almost two years old, and in my opinion, underutilized. This post will show you some valuable tips to know about TrueView shopping campaigns before creating your first one.

Remember the Number 6

If you want to run TrueView shopping campaigns on YouTube’s six-second bumper ads, you’re going to be disappointed because it’s not an option. And I take Google’s side on this one. Think about it. Six seconds isn’t enough time for a user to engage with your video, connect with your message, and peruse your product line before the ad transitions to the hosting video.

youtube shopping cards

The other reason the number 6 is important is because that is the maximum amount of Shopping cards that can appear on your YouTube ads. Even though you can select more products to use in your campaigns, only six products can show so choose your filtering wisely (coming up next).

And when those shopping cards show up on YouTube, they eliminate the possibility of any other cards (like call-to-action overlays) appearing on your videos.

Product is Selected at the Campaign Level

In a Search Network shopping campaign, advertisers are used to creating ad groups first before having to select their product. With TrueView shopping campaigns, you have to select your products a step earlier at the campaign level.

This may change your strategy of how you structure your TrueView shopping campaigns if only certain products would make sense to show alongside certain videos.

trueview shopping product filter

You have three options when selecting your products:

  1. Choose all products available in your chosen feed
  2. Select specific products by searching for titles, URLs or product IDs
  3. Create custom filters (one example seen below)

trueview shopping custom filters

If you’re going to select specific products, it’s important to remember you only get to select a maximum of 10 products. If you want more than 10 products to show up for your campaign, try finding a custom filter that works or create a new feed to sync with your campaign.

Dynamic Remarketing Is Available for YouTube Shopping

What if your company has a great video to showcase, but the video content isn’t about any particular product line? What if you don’t have a big budget and only want to show products to previous visitors who are watching your videos? Dynamic remarketing is here for you.

adwords visitors

In your Video campaign settings, make sure your product filter is set to all products. Then when you get to the section to add additional targeting, select the proper remarketing audiences to add to your campaign.

Your TrueView shopping remarketing campaigns will use the same data as your dynamic remarketing for Display ads. So make sure your dynamic remarketing is set up properly.

Give TrueView for Shopping a Try

YouTube is a fantastic channel to show users the full spectrum of capabilities and features your products offer. Make users fall in love with your products with great visual content, then encourage them to buy it using TrueView shopping campaigns.

It might take some time to figure out the best targeting and campaign structure that works best for you. But once you find the sweet spot, you can be pulling in revenue from an unexpected channel.


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6 Advanced Techniques to Boost Your AdWords Performance

Posted by on May 12, 2017 in Advertising, Search
6 Advanced Techniques to Boost Your AdWords Performance

In some cases, PPC doesn’t pay off from the very beginning! Don’t just give up without giving it another try. Follow these simple yet powerful tips to improve your AdWords performance.

1. Use Conditional Keywords

Are you using carefully selected keywords but they are not performing well? You need to switch your keywords strategy right away. Sometimes even targeted keywords don’t convert (for multiple reasons). For example, information seekers search the same keywords and buyers, but are not ready to buy.

Let’s suppose you are a house removal company in New York and targeting the following keywords…

  • house removals
  • house movers
  • moving companies
  • removals company

They are your main targeted keywords and are eating your most of the budget.  Pause them! Instead use conditional keywords where the user is looking exactly for the service you are offering but with a solid and well defined condition. For example:

  • international removals
  • interstate moving companies
  • furniture removalists
  • nationwide moving companies
  • apartment movers
  • office relocation
  • local moving services

In my experience, these types of users are most likely to convert at higher conversion rates. It will lift up your conversions and decrease your costs.

2. Use Long Tail Keywords

Long tail keywords are another great way to optimize your AdWords account performance. Don’t confuse them with ‘conditional keywords’.

As I said earlier, conditional keywords have clear and solid condition attached to the search query, whereas long tail keywords don’t necessarily need to have one.

For example, for removal companies, long tail keywords might be:

  • best house removal companies
  • cheap house movers in new york
  • where can I find moving companies

To get even better results, use long tail conditional keywords which in this case could be:

  • long distance interstate moving companies
  • discount interstate moving companies
  • best interstate moving companies nyc
  • moving companies for interstate moves
  • full service interstate moving companies
  • interstate moving companies near me

One conditional keyword will have several long tail keywords so there is a solid chance that you get good conversions from such keywords.

3. Create “Near Me” Campaign

This is, perhaps, the most neglected technique for getting more conversions and improving account performance. People are getting more localized day by day in this mobile world.

More than 50% of traffic is already on mobile and they are well aware of the fact that Google knows their location already. I know if I type “near me” next to my search query, this will bring up much more localized service providers.

But there is a catch. In this scenario, you are targeting entire New York and in such big cities, not everyone is close enough to visit your business. Even if they see your ad, they are least likely to convert. You need to target those who are physically close to your business location when make a search online.

Here is how you do it—create a separate campaign for “Near Me” searchers. Let’s suppose you are based in Long Island. Go to you campaign’s setting tab and then location. Click on “Add Location” and then select “Near Me” campaign. Search for “Long Island” and add it.

long island

Now you are targeting people physically located in Long Island (add as many nearby areas as you want). Add all relevant keywords. Few examples are below…

  • house movers near me
  • house removals nearby
  • closest house movers
  • local house removal companies

If, in some cases, you don’t find your area in the AdWords location targeting interface, try your zip code instead, and if doesn’t work either, target by “Radius”.

You can even target generic and broad keywords in this campaign with even less fear of losing money. Here are a few more tips to consider:

  • Add localized messaging in your ad copy
  • Use the location extension
  • Enable the phone calls extension

There is another way to target visitors near your location. You must have your business registered with Google My Business. The next step is to link your “My Business” location with AdWords account. Read this Google guide for further instructions on how to link it.

After it’s done, heads toward the advanced location targeting window and click on “location groups” tab and select My Locations from the dropdown as shown in the image below. Select the radius you want to target, let’s say 2 miles and click on Add.

location groups

This is a convenient way to target users near your business location especially when you have multiple business locations. This targeting technique will apply to all business locations you have in your Google My Business account.

That’s how your ad will look like on mobile.

local ad

(Image courtesy of Google)

At this point you may want to add multiple radius targets to single campaign to find the best radius that works for you. Let’s suppose you targeted 2 miles initially. Now repeat the whole process again and target 4 miles, then 7 and 10 (or what makes sense to you). In this way, you can learn about the impact of distance from your business location and later set your bids accordingly.

You should also check the ‘distance report’ more frequently to see how far the customer was when she saw your ad. This can be found under the “Dimension” tab. Choose ‘Distance’ from the ‘View’ drop down.

multiple location groups

(Image courtesy of Google)


If a user happens to be in the area close to your multiple business locations, he will see all of them in the ad and can  choose one which suits him best.

local ad multi locations

(Image courtesy of Google)


Tip: Schedule your “Near Me” campaign to run during your operating hours.

Note: This technique is applicable to all other campaigns in your account as well and works perfectly fine for the visitors physically close to your location. 

4. Enable Mobile Click-to-Call

This is most important and least used feature by AdWords advertisers in this mobile world. Please note that I am not talking about the “phone calls extension,” I am not even talking about the “calls from website.” I am specifically talking about “phone number click” on your mobile site.

There are 3 types of call conversions you can track from within AdWords interface. If you have a phone number displayed on your website and are not tracking all three of them, your stats are not accurate (especially when you have to report to client about AdWords performance).

call conversions adwords

i) Call Extension

Majority of the advertisers are well aware of this feature known as “Call Extensions”. Visitors see “call” button next to your ads on mobiles or your “phone number” on desktop devices.

call extension

(Image courtesy of Google)


ii) Calls from website

In this type of conversion, Google displays a dynamically-generated forwarding number when someone visits your website after clicking your ad. Your own phone number will be replaced by this forwarding number, so you can measure how many people called you after landing on your website either on mobile or desktop.

calls from website

 (Image courtesy of Google)

Fewer AdWords advertisers are taking advantage of this feature as compare to call extensions. 

iii) Phone click on mobile site

This is perhaps the most important call tracking source. It will turn your dead phone number on your mobile site into live clickable phone number. Here is how Google describes it…

“When someone visits your mobile website after clicking one of your AdWords ads, conversion tracking can help you identify clicks on your phone number. Unlike website call conversions, this feature only tracks clicks on your phone number, not actual phone calls. You’ll see click data instead of call data (such as call length) in your conversion reports.You can measure clicks on a text link, image, or button.”

mobile click to call

(Image courtesy of Google)

You can read more about adding this tracking to your mobile site on this Google support link. Check out this guide if you’re interested in tracking conversions with Google Analytics.

When visitors land on your mobile website after clicking your ad and decide to call instead of signup, they have to manually dial your number. Giving them the option to click to call will definitely increase your conversion rate.

On a side note, I checked ten different websites currently running paid campaigns in New York for “house removals” related keywords and found the following worrisome facts…

  • 3 out of 10 companies don’t even have a phone number displayed on their websites
  • 4 out of 10 websites are not even responsive (mobile-friendly)
  • 10 out of 10 are not tracking phone number clicks on mobile devices
  • 9 out of 10 websites aren’t tracking calls from website
  • 8 out of 10 haven’t enabled click to call function for organic users on mobiles
  • 2 out of 10 don’t have Google Analytics installed on the websites
  • 9 out of 10 don’t have AdWords conversion tracking installed on their websites

Let me remind you once again, all these 10 websites are currently running paid campaigns on AdWords.

5. Find & Use a Winning Landing Page

Easier said than done, right? Give me few moments and I’ll show you how easy it is to implement a winning landing page on your website especially for paid campaigns right from the beginning.

The best practice to be always testing your landing pages and ultimately find best performer. But it’s time consuming and can cost you good amount of money if you are running paid campaigns so where should you start?

Start from spying on your competitors, we need to take help from a PPC spying tool here. Let me give you an example of SpyFu which is very useful to look at the ad history of our competitors and for how long they are using the current landing page.

Enter a domain of your well established competitor and look back into history for how long they are using the current landing page, also check their ad copy, call to action, display URL, landing page content and If the competitor is using the same landing page for several weeks or months then you find yourself a winner.

ad history

6. Bid on Competitors

This might be the most effective and cheapest way to get more conversions. Most of the advertisers are aware of this technique and they are bidding on the brand names of their competitors but you know what?

They are bidding on their online competitors, what they are not doing is considering the offline competitors into online landscape.

Every business has offline competitors spending heavily on TV, print, or radio advertisement and you know what the interesting part is? They don’t even have a websites!

This is a huge opportunity for you to bring their customers to your own website.

Let’s suppose you just find out that you need a plumber and at that exact moment, you watch a compelling TV ad about “Acme Plumbing Company,” after the ad is gone, you don’t remember the phone number they shown on TV or the address, what you remember is—the company name.

So what the next thing will you do? You’ll search for them online.

I am getting 400 leads a month for one of my client by using this technique and these 400 leads are coming from a single competitor who is advertising heavily on TV and print but doesn’t have a website. I am just bidding on their brand name and you can imagine the cost/conversions, right? It’s less than 20% of avg. cost/conversion of that account.

Now it’s up to you!

Let me know in comments which technique you are NOT using yet?


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How to Align Your Marketing Automation with Social Ads [MarTech 2017]

Posted by on May 9, 2017 in Advertising, PPC News
How to Align Your Marketing Automation with Social Ads [MarTech 2017]

Grabbing a prospect’s attention in B2B is difficult.

Email inboxes are always flooded with higher priority content, and prospects don’t typically think about their work needs outside of work. So how do you get your messaging in front of the right people at the right time outside of email?

Social ads are making this easier to do. With sophisticated targeting options on social platforms, you can reach people by their email address. When dayparting your ads during business hours, you have another automated way to reach your target audience at the right time.

In addition to email address targeting, you can additionally layer on the social ad targeting like interests, income level, job title, and company exclusions, to further refine the list and tailor hyper-specific messaging throughout the lifecycle.

In this session at MarTech Conference San Francisco, Sahil Jain CEO and Co-founder at AdStage Inc. and Amanda Westwood, Digital Marketing Manager at Zendesk, will reveal real use cases examples of how to marry your CRM data (first-party data) with targeted ads to connect with those same people on social platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Delivering personalized individual-level advertising that can done with CRM data and existing marketing automation campaigns.



How to Expand Your Reach and Drive More Conversions on LinkedIn

Posted by on May 3, 2017 in Advertising, Social
How to Expand Your Reach and Drive More Conversions on LinkedIn

When LinkedIn released Sponsored Updates, later rebranded as Sponsored Content, B2B marketers took notice. Finally, there’s a social network offering that displayed native content ads next to professional oriented content, opposed to baby pictures and fine restaurants plates.

With a reach of over 480 million professional members, LinkedIn is not only a great place to increase brand awareness and encourage engagement, but can also act as a powerful channel to drive conversions in the form of web traffic, form fills, and assist sales.

In this post, we’ll walk through the 5 must try tactics which can help reach your ideal audience, increase conversion rates, and boost your return on ad spend on LinkedIn.

Tactic #1: Reach and Influence Entire Teams with Account-Based Targeting

The B2B industry has been abuzz around the topic of Account-Based Marketing over recent years.

Account Based Marketing Search Trends

*examining US search query volume for “Account Based Marketing” over the last 2 years in Google Trends

In essence, Account-Based Marketing (or ABM), is the process of Marketing and Sales teams aligning together to prospect, reach, engage, and influence ideal customer companies and contacts. In the hopes of driving more sales or revenue through focused and collaborative touch points.

This approach to marketing is complimented by the company and function targeting offered with LinkedIn Ads.

Targeting Specific Companies with LinkedIn Ads

LinkedIn advertising allows you to select up to 100 companies to target with any Sponsored Content, Text Ads, or InMail campaign using the Company Name targeting option.

Company Name Targeting in LinkedIn Ads Manager

However, each of these companies must be entered one-by-one, and you may want to target more than 100 companies in a given campaign to expand your reach. Thankfully, LinkedIn recently announced the release of their Account Targeting option.

What’s Account Targeting?

Account Targeting allows advertisers to upload a list of company names they’d like to reach with their ads. LinkedIn will match this list against nearly 12 million company pages, and create an audience targeting bucket which can be used in ad campaigns.

Account Targeting in LinkedIn Ads Manager

Learn all the steps to get setup in our, “Quick Guide to LinkedIn Matched Audiences”.

Reach Entire Teams with Function Targeting

A study by Harvard Business Review revealed that B2B purchase decisions typically involve 5 or more people within a company. With LinkedIn’s function targeting you can reach all the influencers and decision makers within a department.

Function Targeting in LinkedIn Ads Manager

Add it as a refined target to your Company Name or Account Targeting to reach the exact companies and teams that would make ideal customers.

Tactic #2: Pinpoint Exact Prospects to Target with Contact Matching

According to IDC Research, “nearly 50% of a tech company’s marketing program budget is spent on awareness”. In short, as digital marketers we’re too acquisition focused. Aligning the majority of our budgets to generate new contacts in our database.

However, some of the best opportunities for potential new customers are already sitting in your database – added from previous prospecting and marketing campaigns. While LinkedIn Ads can be great driver of new prospects, with their release of Contact Targeting, it now can be an excellent vehicle for lead nurturing.

What’s Contact Targeting?

This offering allows advertisers to upload a list of up to 30,000 email contacts, which will be matched with the associated LinkedIn user profile, revealing back a target that can be used in advertising campaigns.

Opposed to targeting broader audiences, Contact Targeting allows advertisers to pinpoint exact prospects which have a high likelihood to buy or are an ideal fit for your solution or service.

Contact Match in LinkedIn Ads Manager

Pro-tip: Ensure you prepare your file before, only containing a single column of email addresses, and include a header title “email”. Uploading a raw list, without this formatting, will result in errors.

Learn more about this process in our, “Quick Guide to LinkedIn Matched Audiences.

Tactic #3: Couple Your Sponsored Content Campaigns with Text Ads

While many direct response advertisers have taken advantage of Direct Sponsored Content – due to its ability to easily test ad creative, direct the click through to a web page, and track conversions back to the campaign and ad level – it’s counterpart, Text Ads, often are glossed over. Text Ads can be a powerful driver of new conversion opportunities.

What are the benefits of Text Ads?

  • Lower average CPC and CPM costs than Sponsored Content & DSC ad units
  • Only shown to LinkedIn users on Desktop devices
  • You can test different variations of headlines, body copy, images, and destinations
  • Supported by the LinkedIn Insights tag conversion tracking
  • You can run Sponsored Content & Text ad campaigns together

Top Line Text Ads in LinkedIn Update Feed

Right Rail LinkedIn Text Ads

Shameless plug: Within AdStage advertisers can easily duplicate the targeting of any Sponsored Content campaign over to a Text Ads campaign to expand your reach. Learn more.

Tactic #4: Optimize for Mobile Conversion Flows

There’s continued adoption of LinkedIn users to access the platform using a Mobile device – whether on their browser or using the app. This trend has been so prevalent that some advertisers are seeing the majority of their clickthroughs coming from mobile devices in Sponsored Content campaigns.

AJ Wilcox Quote - LinkedIn Advertising Group

*Insights from AJ Wilcox, CEO of B2Linked within the LinkedIn Advertising Group.

This is why it’s more important than ever to think through the mobile conversion experience. Mobile users are less likely to fill out long forms, read long form content, or have the patience for ill-fit images to load.

There are two main options to convert more mobile traffic:

       1. Ensure your landing page is mobile responsive

  • Render a version of your landing page that is mobile friendly
  • Ensure the page loads quickly
  • Slim your forms down for typing on mobile
  • Be precise with your copy
  • Test different calls-to-actions

Learn more tips on making your page mobile-responsive from this great checklist guide from Unbounce.

2. Use LinkedIn’s Lead Gen Forms

LinkedIn recently announced the launch of Lead Gen Forms. A frictionless mobile experience that allows prospects to enter their information, with one click, right within the ad in the post feed. Lead Gen ads skip the landing page experience and the form can be easily created without any needing creative or dev resources.

Lead Gen Forms in LinkedIn Ads Manager

Learn how to get setup with Lead Gen cards in our walkthrough post, “How to Set Up LinkedIn Lead Gen Forms and Sync Your CRM”.

Tactic #5: Win-Back Lost Visitors with Retargeting Campaigns

Websites typically convert at single digit conversion rates. It’s gut wrenching to think of all the hard work and money it takes to get a qualified prospect to visit your site, only to have the vast majority leave without taking an action. Entice lost prospects to come back and convert by reaching them again with Text, Sponsored Content, or InMail retargeting campaigns.

Web Audiences in LinkedIn Ads

Getting started with LinkedIn’s Website Audiences is easy:

  1. Ensure you have the LinkedIn Insights Tag placed across your entire website.
  2. Navigate to the tools drop down, and select “Matched Audiences”.
  3. Then select the, “Create an audience to retarget”, button.
  4. Create segments of visitor audiences by which web page(s) they viewed.
  5. Use the audiences as a custom target in your ad campaigns.

For more help you can reference the official step-by-step guide from LinkedIn.

Wrapping Up

With the additions of Matched Audiences (Web, Contact, and Audience Targeting) and Lead Gen Forms, LinkedIn has significantly strengthened their offering for acquisition marketers. It’s easier than ever to pinpoint your exact ideal audience, provide a better experience for mobile users, and reach lost web visitors all under the LinkedIn Ads Manager suite. Have you tried any of these tactics? Let us know how they performed for you by leaving a comment!

The Internet Marketing Lead Generation Ecosystem

Posted by on Apr 25, 2017 in Advertising
The Internet Marketing Lead Generation Ecosystem

Imagine being a surgeon who has somehow never opened an anatomy book. There’s absolutely no way to successfully complete a surgical procedure if you have no idea what anything looks like on the inside of a patient. Likewise, there’s very little chance of success for a mechanic who doesn’t know what an engine looks like.

The most basic element of successfully putting anything together is to know what the finished product should look like. It’s the reason jigsaw puzzles come with pictures on the boxes, and it’s why Internet marketers should know what the ecosystem of lead generation looks like.

For all the work Internet marketers put into attracting clicks, an incomplete campaign means much of that effort could be wasted because critical elements of the campaign are missing or not functioning properly.

Understanding Lead Generation Success

At Straight North, we’ve been focused on examining successful lead generation campaigns (and finding out what makes them tick) in an effort to help our professionals and clients better understand them. We’ve spent a great deal of time dissecting these campaigns and pulling apart all of the different elements that go into them.

To say that Internet marketing campaigns are complex would be an understatement — a successful lead generation campaign has dozens of moving pieces that need to fit together perfectly in order for them to be successful. These elements fall into different categories, all flowing into the main website and then triggering the lead generation process which is, on its own, a complicated and intricate system.


The Internet Marketing Lead Generation Ecosystem via

Infographic created by Straight North, an internet marketing services provider.

Building A Blueprint

Having a blueprint is essential for building any complex system or product, so we’ve consolidated our extensive research on the subject of successful lead generation campaigns into a visual representation of what we’ve come to regard as the ecosystem of Internet marketing lead generation.

Originally, this schematic was developed for internal training purposes, but in time we discovered the benefits of using the infographic as a tool to help clients visualize and understand their campaigns so they could, in turn, help us deliver the most optimized campaign possible.

By following this blueprint, Internet marketers can see how all of the various elements that go into a lead generation campaign fit together and influence each other, leading to success. As is the case with complex systems such as the human body or a high-performance car engine, there are numerous components that factor into its success.

Like those complex systems, this ecosystem can seem impenetrable at first glance. However, by delving deep into the inner workings and breaking down its component pieces, understanding it becomes a lot easier.

Working In Sync

As the flowchart makes apparent, a lead generation campaign’s elements each serve a specific purpose within the process as a whole, working together to generate new sales leads. If any of those elements are missing for any reason, there is real risk that the campaign will function at far less efficacy, or even stop functioning altogether.

For Internet marketers seeking to build the most effective and efficient lead generation campaign, this blueprint could be the difference between a highly successful campaign and one that is doomed to failure. By incorporating proven sales lead generation strategies, the ecosystem we’ve visualized here represents the most full-featured and effective form of a lead generation campaign.

This is essential to have because the sheer number of complicated and varied components that go into the typical lead generation campaign means Internet marketing professionals or their clients can easily overlook or neglect certain specific elements as they assemble their campaigns.

For example, many campaigns neglect to include a lead validation component, leaving the information they collect about their campaigns lacking — and ultimately wasting their efforts. That’s an essential component that is easy to miss without a reminder.

If you’re developing a lead generation campaign, or if you have one in place that you feel could be operating at a higher level, compare it to this ecosystem infographic. Having the visualization of a successful campaign may be critical in helping you understand what yours should look like and help you identify any overlooked or neglected elements.

It’s nearly impossible to fix something complex without instructions, and this flowchart can be a good place for you to start with your lead generation campaign.

Have PPC expertise to share? Join us for a guest post!

Have PPC expertise to share? Join us for a guest post!

Write for The AdStage Blog

Have an opinion about Facebook’s newest feature release? Want to share your tips on managing Demand Gen teams in modern agencies? Think you have a game-changing hack for optimizing your AdWords campaigns? Then we’d love to have you write a guest post for our blog. We’re always looking for fresh perspectives from the sharpest minds in search and social digital advertising to provide our audience with actionable, in-depth content that helps them better plan, execute, optimize, and report on their PPC campaigns.

A few of our favorite guest posts to date include:

How to Write an AdStage Guest Post

  • Submit your contact information and your blog post idea in this Google Form. Please allow us 7 business days to get back to you.
  • Next, once we give the go-ahead, send us a full draft of the post in google doc format. Include images! Please allow us 7 business days to review and provide edits/feedback.
  • Include a bio (50 words max), include 150 x 150 high-res photo of yourself.
  • After final edits are made and the post is approved, we will queue it up in our content schedule.
  • Lastly, we will let you know the publish date and time so you can co-promote on the launch date.

Who are our ideal guest post authors?

We accept pitches from PPC marketers of all stripes. Whether you’re working in an in-house, agency, or consultant role, everyone brings unique perspectives that are valuable to our audience.

You should have at least a couple years of experience in the PPC world. Previous pieces in published on other high-authority blogs are a plus.

Which Topics Do We Cover?

Our audience consists of data-driven marketing directors, in-house PPC managers/specialists, and PPC agency marketers from around the world. The types of articles that do well with our readers include:

  • Anything to do with planning, organizing, or executing PPC campaigns or accounts.
  • Specific Ad Network features digital advertisers can take advantage of to get the most bang for their buck (top Ad Networks include Facebook, Instagram, AdWords, LinkedIn, Bing, and Twitter).
  • How-to guides for medium to advanced PPC professionals.
  • Bonus points for focusing on PPC reporting or automation!
  • Tips for PPC Reporting for Agencies, A/B testing, Conversion Rate Optimization, Automation, B2B Lead Generation, PPC Landing Pages, Ad Creative, Re-Targeting–if it’s PPC, are all great topics!

Guest Post Requirements

  • Your post must be at least 1,000 words.
  • You must propose a target keyword.
  • We request that you use the CoSchedule Headline Analyzer to come up with your headline, and submit one with a score of at least 65.
  • Your post must be original content.
  • If your post is published, we’ll ask that you respond to all comments for the first seven days after it’s posted.

What’s in it for you?

  • Exposure to our ever-growing audience of PPC experts
  • A potential feature in our weekly newsletter
  • Shoutouts from AdStage social media accounts
  • A chance to share your expertise and build your reputation as a PPC thought leader

We look forward to hearing from you!

Have PPC expertise to share? Join us for a guest post! via


Cut Your PPC Checklist In Half With This Simple Move

Posted by on Apr 12, 2017 in Advertising, Automation
Cut Your PPC Checklist In Half With This Simple Move

Running a PPC campaign involves so many tasks and can’t-miss details that having a checklist is necessary to keep from overlooking an important step. But, often, a comprehensive PPC checklist can turn into multiple pages of bullets and sub-bullets. Surely, every PPC professional dreams of editing the list down! But how is that possible without losing crucial details? The answer is automation. As you’ll see below, implementing a single point of automation can eliminate multiple steps, and in many cases, optimize performance for better results.

1) Triggered Emails & Texts

If you totaled up all the time you spend monitoring simple milestones for accounts and campaigns, you’d probably gasp at the number. Whether it’s checking in on spend, key performance indicators, or troubleshooting red flags, logging into accounts to look at the numbers is time-consuming. Triggered emails do all the work for you, sending updates and alerts so you can combat over/under spend, make adjustments mid-run, and anticipate problems before they happen.

Cut Your PPC Checklist In Half With This Simple Move via

2) Automated Bidding

You’re not alone in feeling that bidding can be overwhelming and confusing. Google AdWords and Facebook Ads offer bidding options that let you set your goals for CPA, CPC, CPM, and specific objectives, in the case of Facebook. And because both bidding systems continue optimizing 24/7, you can feel confident you’re getting the most for your money without having to monitor and tweak around the clock.

3) Employ If/Then Logic

It’s always exciting to reach a milestone in a PPC campaign, but mindlessly clicking buttons to keep things moving can be a buzzkill. Optimization rules built on if/then logic will automatically roll progress along. For example, if you’re A/B testing ads and want to divert remaining budget to the better performing ad once it crosses a certain threshold, you can set an optimization rule instead of logging in, monitoring, clicking, tweaking, and so forth.

Cut Your PPC Checklist In Half With This Simple Move via

4) Dayparting and Flighting

Scheduling is one area where it’s extra nice to set it and forget it. Instead of logging in to manually launch ads, you can set your calendar for an entire campaign before the first ad is even published.

5) Bulk Action Cleanups

Click. Click. Click. Click. When you have bigger fish to fry, performing the same action over and over can be infuriating. With automation, you can perform bulk actions, so you can get rid of the old and getting started again with a clean slate quickly.

6) A/B split tests

Any good marketer knows testing ads before pulling the big trigger is a must. But running multiple mini-campaigns at once is just double, or triple, or even quincentuple the work depending on how many ads you’re testing. Automating A/B split tests allows you to set up many ads in one go, and pull one complete report.

7) Fresh Creative

We’ve talked about ad fatigue in previous posts, but what can be equally tiring is manually shuffling new creative into the mix when performance stalls. Your dreams of an easier way to keep creative fresh have come true thanks to automation. Set your KPIs, load your creative, then watch as customers are wowed by a seemingly never-ending stream of new ads.

Cut Your PPC Checklist In Half With This Simple Move via

8) Custom Optimization Rules

The core of your PPC checklist might not change, but you’re likely constantly making revisions and additions based on your own data and learnings. Revising your checklist takes time, and you’re probably only expanding it as you add more details. With automation, you can plug in your data to create custom optimization rules, cutting out tiresome manual steps and ensuring you’ve saved valuable information for future campaigns.

Cut Your PPC Checklist In Half With This Simple Move via

9) One Control Center

Even with saved passwords, logging into dozens of accounts to make the same change is tedious. Automation software lets you adjust your ads on different networks from one account. This capability makes it much easier to be nimble, and test without investing a ton of time.


Cut Your PPC Checklist In Half With This Simple Move via

There’s no magic wand to eliminate all the to-dos on your PPC checklist, but letting automation take care of the small stuff means you have more time to focus on the big stuff. AdStage offers powerful automation tools to help you save time and optimize performance.

With AdStage’s Automation, HIRED has decreased CPA by over 30%, and Inflow has used simple if/then logic-based rules to increase conversions by over 20%. Test it out with a 14-Day Free Trial, or request a demo.


What convinced me to start boosting Facebook posts

Posted by on Mar 6, 2017 in Advertising, Social
What convinced me to start boosting Facebook posts

Facebook had over 1.86B active users at the end of 2016, and its News Feed real estate has become a hot commodity. Between your friends’ content and paid advertising, Facebook posts on Pages are getting less and less airtime. As a content creator/social media manager/person paying attention to digital marketing today, I watched organic reach on Facebook lose its power, and turned to advertising to get content syndicated.

That’s where Facebook Boosted Posts come in. While we have a healthy budget for Facebook Ads, and rightly so, we realized we could help syndicate new messaging and optimize our efforts using boosted posts. Boosted posts are affordable, quick, and easy. They not only help new messaging gain traction but also generate buzz to the right influencers. Here’s what ultimately convinced me to start boosting Facebook posts:

What convinced me to start boosting Facebook posts via

1. Test New Messaging Faster

You can get rapid market feedback by testing new messaging with a boosted post. Try boosting Facebook posts for a few dollars per day for 2-5 days to see how the market responds and engages with the content. If it performs well, you can scale that messaging and creatives into your Facebook Ad strategy or other ad campaigns.

2. Launch with a Simple Set-Up

Once you click “Boost Post” in your Business Manager, it’s just a matter of selecting your audience, budget, duration, and payment details. Unlike the full Power Editor or Ads Manager campaign set-up, you do not need to first choose an objective type, create an ad set, or select a bid or bid type. How easy is that? Here’s how easy the Boost Post UI looks in Facebook’s Business Manager.

What convinced me to start boosting Facebook posts via

3. Access Your Saved Audiences

With boosted posts, you can test messaging with your Page followers, friends of followers, or your saved audiences from Facebook Ads. This makes it easy for you to syndicate more broadly if you want immediate results or if you don’t have a large following yet. You also don’t have to set up the audience every time so boosting Facebook posts can happen in a matter of seconds rather than minutes.

4. Increase Your Relevance Score

As we know, Facebook’s Relevance Score is very similar to Google’s Quality Score in that you will get more impressions and likely cheaper clicks if it’s higher quality and more relevant. That said, if you’re noticing a post is getting more engagements than usual, you should boost the post because clearly it’s relevant to your followers or audience (we like Eric Siu’s rule of boosting posts with 3% engagement or more). Additionally, once you can see that it has an exceptionally high Relevance Score, you can actually add it to a campaign in Power Editor or Ads Manager. All you need to do is select the post ID as the ad for that particular campaign and you can now optimize for website conversions, video views, clicks, other objectives outside of page post engagement.

5. Streamline Your Creative and Syndication Efforts

Boosted Posts still follow the same guidelines as Facebook Ads in which the image must not contain more than 20% text. This means, while your content team and ads team can and should use the same assets, your business can also streamline the decision-making process when deciding which creatives to boost, syndicate, and turn into Facebook Ad campaigns. Two heads are better than one, and boosted posts brings your content and advertising teams together to work more closely as a stronger and more strategic business force.

6. Take a Day Off

Let’s face it. Social media never sleeps, but humans need to. The great thing about boosting Facebook posts is that you can boost a post for your day off and you won’t have to worry as much about your traffic or engagement metrics dipping too drastically. Boosted posts give you the opportunity to finally take that vacation you’ve been eyeing on your lunch break. Just keep in mind that posts become outdated eventually, and Facebook only allows you to boost a post for up to 14 days, so don’t miss that flight coming home.

Have you tried boosting Facebook posts? Any best practices to share? Tell us in the comments below!