When it comes to Search Engine Marketing (SEM), there are several major benefits that can help your business. While the obvious benefit is to help convert customers, a largely unmentioned benefit is branding. Subconsciously, as we peruse the internet, we are bombarded with advertisements—in the articles we read, the sites we visit, and when we perform searches on search engines. We see these ads, however, unless they apply to us in the moment, we largely ignore them. What you don’t know is that you are being targeted by brands based on very specific data.
For search engine marketing, whether it is based on your location, the terms you searched for, or your general demographics (your age or gender), you were systematically served ads with intent. It is important to remember that you can use any of the main search engines to brand yourself, so everything we talk about below combines a mixture of the top two search engine advertising platforms—Google Adwords and Bing Ads. Based on the location of your market and what you are trying to accomplish, a combination of these will result in branding your business to the very people you are trying to market to.
Using Banners to Brand
They say that a picture is worth a thousand words; using a banner ad allows you to do this. Using banners to brand your company allows you to target based on placements (websites), interests, topic keywords, age, and gender. By doing this you can put your business, you logo, a picture of your product or what your business represents on various websites in a graphically stimulating way.
A visually appealing ad can go a long way to branding your business. If you work with the right graphics team and marketers, and you can have a brand campaign that people talk about.
Using YouTube to Brand
YouTube is a great way to brand yourself based on interests and topics. People are searching for very specific videos when they come to YouTube, so you can reach very select niches this way. A lot of people don’t think of YouTube as a search engine, but it is. It has the capabilities to allow you to target ads based on interests, topic keywords, age, and gender.
Whether you have your own braded videos you want to amplify, you want to place banner ads on existing videos, or you have your own videos that you want to play before other people’s videos (this is called “in-stream”), YouTube gives you an opportunity to reach 900,000,000 unique visitors a month.
Using Competitors to Brand
Whether it is the lazy nature of internet users or people searching for specific products created by a company, using a competitor’s name to brand yourself is one of the most unique ways to ensuring that you get found. When a searcher is looking for someone in your market, through very careful marketing campaigns, you can ensure that your business information shows up as an ad result. This way, if they hadn’t ever heard of you before they could see you as a player in the industry and check out your site before finalizing a purchase. In other words: you take advantage of the branding and success of your competitors!
Brand Using Programs Like Customer Match
If you have an email list of subscribers to your site’s blog or an email list of old clients that you want to target with a new product, you can load them into a program like Google’s Adwords Customer Match and it will allow you target them when they are on their web browsers. This way they will be reminded of your brand and come back as a loyal customer.
Branding Through Remarketing
If you have the right tags installed on your site, you can run adds for remarketing. This allows you to reach out to those that have visited your site before. Whether they intentionally came to your site looking for a product or they somehow stumbled onto your site via social media or through a search engine query, they will see branded ads to remind them of your site and your company. This leads to engagement and sales with customers for the long-term.