Maybe your brand has been testing paid search ads on Google for years, or maybe you’ve just started to dip your toes into this world. Either way, when bidding on keywords, companies often divide campaigns between branded and non-branded keywords. Any keyword that includes your brand’s name is considered branded, and anything that doesn’t is non-branded (think “Patagonia” vs. “women’s jackets.”)
When setting up brand campaigns, a common question we receive from our clients is, “Why do I need to bid on my own brand’s name if I already rank #1 for that keyword with my organic (free) Google listing?”
Here are the reasons why paid search ads for your brand name are not a waste of money and can even pay off, big time.
If your brand’s products are also sold via Amazon or any other big-name retailer/marketplace, and you don’t run brand ads, that retailer is likely to take that paid space (for your product) and show above your organic listing. So, running ads for your brand allows you to compete against these other retailers.
If you have any major competitors, it’s likely that they’ll bid on your brand terms, and show ads in that space (again, over your organic listing). That could reroute clicks from your website to theirs.
Similarly, if there’s any brands that have the same or a very similar brand name as yours, they may show paid ads for your name, or compete for that first organic listing.
Running brand ads allows you to capture any misspellings or variations of your brand name that happen. If you were running ads for Patagonia, for example, you could use brand ads to more easily capture “Patagon,” “Pategonya” (seems silly but search terms can get pretty wild), “Patagonia sale,” “Patagonia near me,” etc.
Brand ads typically have high return on investment, as cost-per-click here tends to be low, and the people who click are “warm” viewers already familiar with your brand and ready to buy. There’s a lot more purchase intent behind the search term “Patagonia women’s insulated black jacket” than there is behind “women’s jackets.”
With brand ads, you can tailor your text in a way you sometimes cannot with organic listings. For example, you can target customized ad copy to someone who searches “Patagonia sale” or “Patagonia woman’s coat.” There’s the ability to very closely match search terms with ad copy and increase the chance that someone will click.
Brand ads often take up more “real estate” on the Google page than organic ads. If you add sitelinks, price extensions, and all that Google has to offer, your ad can be quite big, again increasing the chance someone will click. But be careful—your ads may be opted into automated extensions, which allows Google to create dynamic extensions using text from your website, even if you haven’t vetted it. It’s usually better to turn off the automation and create them manually, and that’s what we’re here for.
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*This blog post was originally posted on Quora by MAKA Digital team members.