5 Tips to Boost your SEM Strategy

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Contrary to popular belief, SEM and SEO are not exactly the same

SEO, or search engine optimization, is a part of your larger SEM, or search engine marketing, strategy. While SEO aims to earn reach organically, SEM involves paid search spend, which can push your brand even further than just utilizing SEO.

So how can you get your brand in front of your intended audience and drive even more conversions? Here are 5 tips to boost your SEM strategy:

1. Research relevant keywords.

Keywords are the basis of any search engine marketing strategy, but before you can choose which keywords to use in your SEM campaigns, you need to first identify the ones that are most relevant to your brand. Which keywords are consumers using when searching for your, or similar, products and services? While identifying the correct keywords to use, be sure to identify your negative keywords as well, which are irrelevant to your campaign and will likely not lead to conversions.

On top of this, be sure to determine the keywords your competitors are targeting for organic search by looking at their title attributes and page content. Chances are, the keywords they target organically are the ones that generate the most traffic.

2. Create effective keyword groups and account structure.

Logical keyword grouping can lead to higher click-through rates, lower costs-per-click, and better performance overall. Often it is a good idea to have an account structure that mirrors your website, so long as the website itself is also well-organized, but this can change based on each case. AdWords and Bing Ads should be structured in the following way for optimal results: ad campaigns, ad groups, keywords, ad text, and landing pages.

3. Make conversions easy.

Your landing page should make it very easy for consumers to convert, whether that’s registering for an event, filling out a form, or purchasing a product. If your landing page is difficult to navigate, you risk losing customers who may have initially been interested in your product or service.

4. Don’t forget to test.

Don’t expect the first ad you create to be the final version — you’ll likely need to create and test several versions on a continuous basis. Experiment with headlines, copy, calls to action, language, and visuals to see what performs best for each campaign. Test, test, test!

5. Elevate your audience targeting.

It’s essential to reach the right person in the right place at the right time, but that’s nothing new. Try to maximize the number of people you reach by building richer buyer personas that take behavioral, demographic, and contextual factors into consideration. The better picture you paint for your target audience, the better you can understand their wants and needs, as well as how to reach them.