1. Stop being a LURKER - join our dealer community and get involved. Sign up and start a conversation.
    Dismiss Notice

Automated SEM Companies

Discussion in 'Online Marketing & Best Practices' started by MichaelJ, May 24, 2016.

This forum sponsored by...
  1. MichaelJ

    MichaelJ
    Expand Collapse
    Noob

    First Name:
    Mike
    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2015
    Messages:
    8
    Likes Received:
    1
    Does anyone have any experience with drivematic, an automated automotive PPC company? Apparently they run automated ads across text, display, video pre-roll and even Facebook with no long term contract.

    And does the concept of automating such ads make sense?
     
  2. This forum sponsored by...
  3. craigh

    craigh
    Expand Collapse
    Sr. Refresher

    First Name:
    Craig
    Dealer or Company Name:
    Vicimus Inc
    Twitter Handle:
    craighooghiem
    Joined:
    May 19, 2011
    Messages:
    1,155
    Likes Received:
    347
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    Never heard of these guys, but have worked with 3 other providers for this service.
    My honest opinion is that the more automation the less results. Automation almost always applies a "proven" formula to a campaign with little or not learning built in. What I often see is many stores offering the same style of adwords (ie: monthly incentives, store details, vague ads) and I just don't find it effective. Every time I've ever tested automation vs. hand built the custom campaign wins the metrics.

    Results may vary, but we're absolutely manually managing all campaigns now.
     
  4. mwpistell

    mwpistell
    Expand Collapse
    Getting Refreshed

    First Name:
    Michael
    Dealer or Company Name:
    Honeyguide SEM
    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2011
    Messages:
    47
    Likes Received:
    43
    Automated campaigns is like Tesla's auto-pilot feature - it works in some situations but you still need to keep your hands on the wheel. Better to supervise the machine than supervise the crash.

    That said, I still use automated features like script and real time bidding, plus dynamically generated campaigns. It has its place in a dealer's account, but an expert still needs to be at the helm.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  5. craigh

    craigh
    Expand Collapse
    Sr. Refresher

    First Name:
    Craig
    Dealer or Company Name:
    Vicimus Inc
    Twitter Handle:
    craighooghiem
    Joined:
    May 19, 2011
    Messages:
    1,155
    Likes Received:
    347
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    I agree wholeheartedly that there are AdWords experts, formulas that can be used, secret sauce that can be leveraged, etc.
    I also support AdWords vendors and their practice and I think their pricing is actually quite fair typically.

    That said, some of the best campaigns I've seen came from the guy who works at the dealership and offered to fill a void.
    He puts his heart, the store brand and everything he's got into making the campaign work and ensure it matches what they do in store.
    I see huge success when people do this. They know their customers, they know their target audience and they know the dealership.

    AdWords isn't so complicated that it requires expertise - it's more of an icing on the cake.
    I've seen employees go from never touching AdWords to having one of the highest ROI campaigns in less than 60 days.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  6. JoePistell

    JoePistell
    Expand Collapse
    Uncle Joe

    First Name:
    Joe
    Dealer or Company Name:
    Dealer.com
    Twitter Handle:
    JoePistell
    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2009
    Messages:
    3,684
    Likes Received:
    1,186
    Location:
    New York
    Craig,
    From your reply a GM thinks he can turn to that smart guy in clean up and let him go. You've totally overlooked the complexity and the training costs. Who will create the strategy? Who will score & iterate the work? How will leadership monitor the $hundreds & hundreds of dollars wasted on "learning errors"?
     
  7. JoePistell

    JoePistell
    Expand Collapse
    Uncle Joe

    First Name:
    Joe
    Dealer or Company Name:
    Dealer.com
    Twitter Handle:
    JoePistell
    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2009
    Messages:
    3,684
    Likes Received:
    1,186
    Location:
    New York
    A note to dealer decision makers.
    I was a CMO for a group in NY. I custom built my own PPC campaign from scratch. You can do it, but it comes with costs.

    If you DIY, you'll need bandwidth for the learning ahead of you. I found that PPC spending is easy, but to create focus and reduce waste requires leadership. DIY simply means you own the learning experience, the human errors and the mis-allocated ad dollars. If you have the bandwidth for this, then go for it! I did it and it was a smashing success!

    From my seat, grow the PPC budget slowly... think "crawl-walk-run". PPC that sells cars is your mission. You oversight must make sure your PPC campaign matches your org's business & branding needs.

    HTH
    Joe

    p.s. My PPC ROI was off the charts but I hit the wall. I was time challenged and needed help. A big fat TY to @umer.autojini@umer.autojini and @mwpistell@mwpistell for helping me grow my DIY PPC biz to $250k per yr and 25k keywords with hundreds of negative keywords and on and on...
     
  8. craigh

    craigh
    Expand Collapse
    Sr. Refresher

    First Name:
    Craig
    Dealer or Company Name:
    Vicimus Inc
    Twitter Handle:
    craighooghiem
    Joined:
    May 19, 2011
    Messages:
    1,155
    Likes Received:
    347
    Location:
    Ontario, Canada
    I don't understand this point. Why are we firing detailers?

    I haven't overlooked the complexity, I've explained that it's not always that complex.
    AdWords, like almost all forms of Marketing, can be done many different ways.
    There's no single right way and there's plenty of right ways depending on the dealership strategy.

    The answer to "Who will create the strategy" was answered in my post. They use the dealership strategy because that's what they know, they simply transfer it to their digital marketing. What vendors often miss is what the store stands for, the experience at the store and what makes that store unique. Anyone can copy/paste/run a campaign for a specific OEM with a list of proven keywords, reports and ad copy. The benefit of an employee doing it is that they don't think like an AdWords expert, they don't travel that beaten path and they often get a good return, low CPC and an honest representation of the store in their advertising efforts.

    I'm an AdWords vendor and I'm happy to admit I've seen dealership employees nail it from time to time.
    Don't have an employee that can do it? That's fine - vendors are there for that. Just don't hesitate to look inside first.
     
  9. JoePistell

    JoePistell
    Expand Collapse
    Uncle Joe

    First Name:
    Joe
    Dealer or Company Name:
    Dealer.com
    Twitter Handle:
    JoePistell
    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2009
    Messages:
    3,684
    Likes Received:
    1,186
    Location:
    New York
    I disagree. This is not nitpicking. Vendor 1st, DIY 2nd.

    Some thoughts for our dealer decision makers who'd like to DIY (learned from my past mistakes).
    1. Start with a professional, certified ad specialist (must be dedicated to auto dealer retail). This vendor's work will set up your performance baseline.
    2. Learn about the digital ad eco-system. The workflow is: ad publishing locations, ad creation, bidding & budget mngt., landing page content creation and performance monitoring (Analytics)
    3. When your dialed in and you have your ad vendor following your lead...
    4. Then it's DIY time.
      1. WHO you hire is going to make our break you.
      2. Know your time limits. Your success will depend on your training.
        1. Hiring Outsiders (teach them our biz 1st, then, the ad biz).
        2. Hiring Insiders can save you from dealer-think training, but, your pool of talent is smaller.

    From a decision makers POV, to DIY, there are 2 critical 'must haves'. #1 a baseline from a pro. #2 a great hire that can run with the ball.

    HTH
    Joe
     
  10. umer.autojini

    umer.autojini
    Expand Collapse
    Refresher

    First Name:
    U
    Dealer or Company Name:
    AutoJini
    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2009
    Messages:
    142
    Likes Received:
    22
    I would agree with what @JoePistell@JoePistell has said... Vendor 1st and DIY 2nd. In regards to evaluating the vendor... couple of things to look for.

    1. You should get access the underlying PPC. esp on adwords and bing ad center.
    2. Have them walk you through a sample account. Look for Quality score... some 5s are okay... but majority should be at or above 6. Search impression share should be no lower then 35%... you want to be above 65%+... indicates it is a actively manged account and someone is doing their job. Adjusting bids, adding negatives, splitting keywords into tight groups, right creatives... etc...
    3. Have them do a walk through on Analytics, look at the bounce rate... under Acquisition... Adwords account should be lower then the average site bounce rate... if it is higher then something is wrong with what the vendor is doing.

    I would also review this old thread... somethings are outdated but still some very good info..
    http://forum.dealerrefresh.com/threads/ppc-numbers-how-do-we-compare-cpc-and-cpl.1313/
     
  11. Gayle Rogers

    Gayle Rogers
    Expand Collapse
    Getting Refreshed

    First Name:
    Gayle
    Dealer or Company Name:
    Strong Automotive Merchandising
    Twitter Handle:
    GayleRogers03
    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2013
    Messages:
    37
    Likes Received:
    8
    Location:
    Birmingham, AL
    A lot of good points made here, and there is certainly a time and place to use software to solve simple problems...That said, when it comes to paid search say no to Automation! It makes too many assumptions about complex situations. Additionally it puts WAY too much trust in the hand's of Google and Bing. You can find a lot of qualified individuals/companies that will manually manage your campaigns...and you'll be a lot happier that you did.
     

Share This Page

This forum sponsored by...