Search advertising: what is it good for?

Search advertising is great for making direct sales, quickly. Nobody disputes that. But that doesn’t mean the reverse isn’t true. It can work just as well for businesses which have long sales processes. What it requires is a bit of realism about how much we should be paying to get information into the hands of prospects.

I often come across companies who have spent a lot of time and effort creating some fantastic early-stage sales collateral, such as extensive white papers. They understand that significant sales are always going to require a lot of warming up. What proves harder for them to accept is that they’re going to have to spend a decent amount to get the material into people’s hands too.

“£3 to get someone to click on a link and read our article? Isn’t that rather a lot?”

No, it really isn’t. Even if only 1 in 10 or 1 in 100 become a real prospect off the back of that, I’d suspect that would make it a decent investment. For years, companies have gone to trade exhibitions and been happy to come back with ‘leads’ that have probably cost them £500 a pop, when all’s added up. It’s just that… well, unknown people reading an article invisibly just seems harder to justify.

It shouldn’t do.