Easy Guide to Starting An AdWords Campaign

  • Everyone wants more traffic to come to their site, but what is the easiest way to get? There are many answers to that question, but one of them is to simply pay for it. Google offers a program called AdWords that allows anyone to use their system to attract visitors to their site, paying a nominal fee for each person that comes through the door by clicking on one of your ads.

    Setting up an AdWords account can seem like a daunting project, but it’s actually incredibly painless and can result in a huge return on a relatively small investment. Remember, you ONLY pay for those people who actually click on your ad and go to your site. Here’s a step-by-step process to creating your first AdWords account.

    1. To start the process, go to https://adwords.google.com/.

    If you have a Google account, you can go ahead and sign in. If not, click on Learn More.

    2. Now click on Get Started Now. See how easy this is?

    3. If you already have a Gmail account of some sort click on the first option that says “I have an address and password.”

    If you don’t have a Gmail account (or Google user id and password) click on the button marked “I Do Not Use These Other Services” and Google will have you quickly create an account.

    4. Below that you can choose between “I’d like to use my existing Google account for AdWords” and “I’d like to choose a new login name and password just for AdWords”. If you choose the first option, Google will then ask you for your password and you’re off to the races!

    5. Select your country, time zone, and your currency preference.

    6. Google will then tell you that your AdWords account has been created and it will ask you to sign in.


    Selecting Campaign Settings

    7. This is the Welcome to AdWords page. There’s all kinds of helpful information to be found here. The Getting Started video is extremely helpful and definitely worth a watch. The list of Common Questions also has a ton of great stuff that can help you on your journey towards marketing greatness. Once you think you’ve gleaned everything from this page that you can, click on the “Create Your First Campaign” button.

    8. Campaigns are the way Google helps you to organize your AdWords efforts. Each campaign is a different consumer group that you will be approaching with your ads. Name each one in such a way that it will be easy for you to reference when adjusting your account or monitoring your activity.

    9. You then need to decide which type of Adwords campaign you would like to run. You can choose from Search Network only, Display Network only, or a combination of the two.

    The Search Network is the most common type of network chosen in AdWords and uses searched keywords to decide which sort of ads it will display. You can choose to have your ad show up only on Google Search or also with their search partners such as Google Maps or Google Shopping. The Display Network, on the other hand, display your ads on sites that are part of the AdSense advertising program, so you never quite know where those might wind up. We recommend starting with Search Network only and then you can always expand from there.

    10. The next choice you will need to make is the geographic area that you would like your ads to run, U.S. only, U.S. and Canada, or international. You can also submit a very targeted area as well, such as specific country, city or zip code. Again, that would be a personal choice based on your media’s demographic.

    11. You now can pick what languages you would like your ad translated into. Again, this one is totally up to you.

    12. Now you get to the tougher decisions. You need to set up your AdWords budget. You can either manually set your bids for keywords yourself or let Google handle that. You can set a total daily budget limit so the second option isn’t quite as scary as it sounds, but again, whatever you feel the most comfortable with.

    13. The next section is Ad Extensions and those are a little more advanced and we can tackle those in a future post.


    Selecting an Ad Group


    14. The next task is for you to create an Ad Group. An Ad Group is a single ad or several ads that use a group of similar keywords. Again, name it something that will be easy for you to reference later.

    15. You now get the chance to create your first ad. As you create the ad, you will see it populate in the field to the right of the screen. Now we’re having fun, aren’t we?

    You will start with the headline. Google gives you a whopping 25 spaces to fit your eye-catching headline into. Make it informative but also enticing and exciting. Go ahead and give it a shot.

    The next two lines are your BRIEF description of the headline. Remember, you only get 35 spaces on each of these lines and it goes faster than you’d think, so an economy of words while still getting the point across is important.

    The fourth line is called the Display URL. This is the home page URL that your potential customers will see on their end. So this is exactly how you would like the world to see your URL.

    Below that is called the Destination URL. This is the exact page of the website that you would like your customers to land on. It must be within the same domain name as the Display URL or Google won’t be happy. And remember, if Google’s not happy, no one’s happy. This is a handy little tool to use to send your customers to the exact piece of media that you would like them to preview and buy, as opposed to sending them to the home page of your channel where you HOPE they find something of interest and get out their credit card.

    16. Below the ad creation area is where you can add in your keywords that relate to your ad and products. Use words that are fairly specific to your ad and not necessarily general words that maybe apply to your industry as a whole. If your words are too general you run the risk of attracting people who will click on your ad but have no interest in actually buying what you’re selling. Since you have to pay for every time someone clicks on your ad, these tiny mistakes can add up to a lot of wasted funds.

    17. Google again gives you an easy way to combat non-desired traffic that will wind up costing you money and they’re called Negative Keywords. Once your campaign is created, simply go to the bottom of your Keywords page and you’ll see the words Negative Keywords. Click on this and Google allows you to enter in words that, if searched, will automatically exclude your ads from displaying. As an example, if your company sells shoes, but not slippers, you could enter the word “slippers” into this window. This will keep people who are searching for that term from clicking on your ad and costing you money. Add as many negative keywords as you think are applicable. You’ll probably come up with more as you move along.

    18. Google has provided a handy tool to help you in the process of creating effective keywords. Click on the Tools and Analysis dropdown in the toolbar and choose the Keyword Planner option. The Keyword Planner lets you enter your product, the URL of your landing page, and the business category that most closely relates to your media. After entering in this information, Google will spit out many different ideas that you can use when creating Ad Groups and Keywords since the tool gives suggestions for both as well as how many searches are made for each keyword on average as well as how much competition surrounds it and how much you can expect to pay for each click you will receive.

    19. After you have entered in your keywords click on button reading Save and Continue to Billing. First enter in the country in which you reside followed by the necessary contact information for your profile. Next, you need to choose as to whether you would rather have your monthly spend automatically added to a credit or debit card or if you would like to make manual payments from which Google will deduct from as people click on your ads. Either way is fine and just depends on how closely you want to oversee your spend. Depending on your choice you can then link your account to a credit, debit or bank account.

    20. Terms and Conditions. You know what to do.

    After you have finished this final step, simply click on the Submit and Activate My Account button.


    Congratulations! You have just created your first AdWords campaign! In order to reach out to different markets with different sets of ads and keywords, simply repeat this process starting at the Campaign level and tailor it towards your desired demographic. Now get out there and let the power of Google help bring customers right to your front door!

    To find out more about how Pivotshare is helping media producers sell direct to audience, click here!


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