The phrase negative keywords might sound like they’d ruin your paid ad campaign. So why would anyone suggest that they’d have a positive impact on your marketing efforts?
It’s because negative keywords actually work to protect your campaign. Think of them as click-repellent, if you will. That’s because negative keyword phrases tell Google (or other search engines) that when search queries for certain keywords are entered, you don’t want your ad to be shown to the public.
This protects your ad spend and your brand in all sorts of ways, but here’s three major reasons why you need to become very comfortable with the use of negative keyword phrases:
Control When Your Ads are Shown (and When They’re Not)
The first benefit of this approach? You save money on your per lead costs.
Secondly, you’ll protect your quality score because your ad won’t show up for irrelevant leads.
Third, and possibly most important, your ad won’t be triggered during search queries associated with bad press in your industry.
– Legal judgements
– Poor imagery for your industry
For example, a recent article highlighted that when a consumer performed a search engine query looking for information on cruise ship vacations, the first thing that came up in the results was a photo of a half-sunken ship!
Of course, since a ship disaster was still fresh in the news, it would be the first piece of information to appear. But who wants to be reminded that their ship could capsize when they’re searching for a cruise vacation?
No one, and that’s exactly why smart owners of travel agencies should have plugged in any and all phrases that referred to the ship disaster into their paid ad campaign. This would have prevented their agency name from being associated with such a tragedy.
Weed Out the Disinterested
Let’s face it: There will always be those who either aren’t interested in what your business has to offer, or just aren’t a good fit for your business.
You already know that you’re responsible for paying for keyword-generated clicks regardless of whether or not those clicks are legit. Then why in the world wouldn’t you protect your marketing budget (and the success of your campaign) from bad clicks?
Use negative phrases that eliminate your ad from showing up for people you don’t want to convert into leads.
Examples include the words “free,” “free information,” “education,” and “careers,” just to name a few. You should also think about negative keywords that attract leads for industry verticals that are different from yours. And if your business is a B2B, then you don’t want to attract B2C leads, either.
Boost the Quality Score of Your Campaign
Not only do you want to repel bad clicks, but you also want to boost your quality score. In short, Google assigns a quality score to your ads based upon a number of factors, including the relevancy of your ads to your landing pages.
In other words, Google rewards you when your ad copy (including the keywords you bid on) are closely related to your landing page. So not only will a little effort generate higher quality leads, but Google will also ensure that your ad lands a higher ranking position when your ad shows up.
And if all of these weren’t enough, you’ll find that the higher your quality score is, the less money you’ll pay for your ads! This means that you’ll pay a lower cost per click (CPC), and you’ll enjoy lower bid prices.
All of these will put you on the fast track to experiencing a positive return on your marketing investment.