All Posts

Gamification in Marketing: Lessons from the Khan Academy Website

by Howard Jacobson. In 2011, my family and I spent a year in a remote region of South Africa. My children homeschooled and I was nervous about being their math teacher, until we discovered Through our experience with their site, I learned valuable gamification tips marketers can use to better connect and answer their website audience’s needs. If you’re unfamiliar, the site offers...

[Read more...]

Riding the Motivation Wave in Search Engine Marketing

by Howard Jacobson. Every couple of months I get the urge to meditate. Like, to free myself once and for all from the illusion of separation and fully realize my oneness with all creation. Or maybe just to feel virtuous and spiritual. Or to help me avoid distractions so I can focus on important tasks, like writing this article – ooh, a squirrel! The reasons vary, but one thing has remained constant...

[Read more...]

Key Points To Remember When Using AdWords

Howard Jacobson (co-author of Google AdWords For Dummies, 3rd Edition) addresses important key points for anyone using AdWords or thinking about using AdWords for their business. What is the biggest AdWords challenge? Importance of market discovery. Writing target ads for your prospect. Finding the right keywords. Improving bid results. Why improving landing pages is so important. Tracking ad results.            

[Read More... ]

2 Specific Strategies to Build Trust With Extra Cautious Prospects

by Howard Jacobson. Despite having a comprehensive website, chock-filled with valuable information, one law firm found itself suffering from an opt-in rate for a free case evaluation of just 1.1 percent. The figure was so low that Google AdWords was an ROI-negative advertising medium. One of my colleague has been tasked with improving this client’s website, which offered services for people who...

[Read more...]

3 Landing Page Headline Formulas to Target Your Prospects

by Howard Jacobson. When I ran track in high school, the coach would put slow guys like me in the fifth and sixth heats of races like the sprint medley. This race consisted of two eighths of a mile, one quarter, and one half to finish the race. I generally ran the second eighth of a mile, so I had to receive the baton from the first sprinter, pound the track for 25 seconds or so, and then hand it off...

[Read more...]

How to Win in the Google Stock Market

by Howard Jacobson. The Google search engine has a hidden side. Because it sells ad space based on a keyword auction, it’s actually a stock market for words. If you bid on “donate your car Sacramento” or “DUI Attorney Houston”, you’ll find that the market for those words is very robust. Advertisers are willing to pay a lot of money for those words because they expect...

[Read more...]

A 7-Step Landing Page Template To Convert Prospects Into Leads

by Howard Jacobson. Pay-per-click search marketing may have been invented in the second Clinton administration, but it’s a modern iteration of a hundred-year-old tradition of direct marketing: Find people who have a problem, get their attention with a small, inexpensive ad, and then offer them some thing of value related to their problem in exchange for the ability and permission to follow up. If...

[Read more...]

Search Triggers: A Secret to More Powerful PPC Ads

This article by Howie Jacobson was originally posted on Search Engine Watch. An old joke that I first heard from my friend and colleague Ann Convery: An elderly gentleman is rocking on the porch in the evening, next to his dog, who’s lying down beside him and howling miserably. His neighbor finally can’t stand it, so he walks over and asks, “Fred, what’s with Gideon?” Fred...

[Read more...]

Where to Find the New Google AdWords Competitive Advantage

This article by Howie Jacobson was originally posted on Search Engine Watch. AdWords doesn’t have to be hard, complex, or time consuming. You can still set up campaigns and ad groups without a lot of knowledge or skill. Just follow the prompts, choose a couple of obvious keywords, and accept all the default settings. But don’t expect to make money. Because your savvier competition will have such...

[Read more...]

Don’t Hire Yoda to Run Your Search Marketing

This article by Howie Jacobson was originally posted on Search Engine Watch. When Yoda encourages Luke Skywalker to persist in his attempt to lift his ship out of the swamp in “The Empire Strikes Back”, Luke shrugs his reluctant acquiescence: “All right, I’ll give it a try.” Prompting Yoda to famously pronounce, “No! Try not! Do. Or do not. There is no try.” Great...

[Read more...]