Some people think New Year’s resolutions are cheesy, but I love them! I love taking time to reflect on the last year, evaluate where I am and set new goals. Starting a new year is the perfect time to reset, refocus and restart.
As PPC managers it can be easy to settle into old habits and routines, but these can keep account performance flat or even hurt it. Now’s the time to think through what you could do better as a PPC manager in the new year. I asked each member of our team for two areas they’d like to change or improve upon in 2018 and how they’ll stay on task and accountable; here are our goals to help inspire you for your own.
Work in the New Adwords Interface Daily. At least for a portion of the day. Like many of you, I don’t love the new interface, but continuing to keep myself relatively unfamiliar with it will only hurt me in the long run. Especially considering that some features are only available in the new interface, this seems like the time to try to embrace it…or at least become more familiar with it.
Test automated bidding more. I’ve seen pretty good results with Target CPA bidding over the years, but there are quite a few more automated bidding strategies I haven’t tested yet. I’ve never been a huge fan of eCPC bidding, but we recently tested it again through an experiment for a client and saw good results, with the eCPC experiment campaign garnering a statistically significantly higher ITC percentage for only a slightly higher CPC and CPA. Bid adjustments are definitely an account management task I wouldn’t mind strategically automating to free up my time for higher level optimizations.
Take Advantage of New Features & Channels. I think it’s really easy to get into the everyday grind and not always test the new features and updates that are released. I know that there has recently been some updates in a couple of the channels that I haven’t had time to fully utilize yet (including a lot in the new AdWords interface). I also have clients who could really benefit by testing new channels this year and I’m excited to help them do that.
Get More Certifications. 2017 really allowed me to learn a lot in terms of shopping campaigns, Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager, all of which I had some experience previously but had not dug into very deep. Learning more about these tools has left me wanting to pursue more certifications in 2018. I’m hoping to be able to get additional Google AdWords certifications in an area such as Shopping as well as the Google Analytics Individual Qualification. I’m excited to put what I learn to use in all of my accounts.
Read More. I want to set aside 20-30 minutes each day to read posts from industry blogs. To achieve this goal, I will block out time on my calendar each day and make sure I am signed up to receive the posts in my email.
Pitch to Speak at a PPC Industry Event. I used to run trainings in my last position, but haven’t done much public speaking in the last year and a half. I’d like to challenge myself to get back on the speaking circuit and fine-tune my presentation skills. I will create a list of all the 2018 scheduled conferences and put reminders on my calendar of due dates for pitch submissions. I’ll review my pitches with the rest of the team to get recommendations on how to improve my proposals.
More Time for Higher Level Thinking. We’ve all been there — the intricacies of day-to-day tasks can fight more and more to take over your workday. This year, I’m hoping to create a dedicated weekly time for freeform, higher level thinking about account strategies. These time blocks always pop up throughout the year, but I know that having designated time for it allows for greater creativity and more interesting strategies to test. I’ll plan to spend time on Fridays for this type of ideation, as all the thoughts from the week are usually swimming around in my head on the last day of the week and therefore make it the most conducive time to tie strategies together.
Keeping Up With Software Advancements. It’s pretty easy to keep up with the big changes that happen in our ad channels. Depending on the change, people are usually screaming mad or happy about it on the social channels. But more recently I’ve stumbled across some capabilities in tools I’ve been using for a while without realizing they’re there. I’m hoping to spend a bit more time in 2018 keeping up-to-date on all the capabilities of software I already use to make sure I’m taking full advantage.
Deliberate Learning. The PPC community is amazing about sharing the wealth of knowledge in our ever-evolving digital environment. However, when agency life gets crowded, I glance at, then often “mark as unread” emails from various PPC resources that I subscribed to. I have every intention of coming back to them “when I have more time to dig in”, but unfortunately, all too often, I don’t get back to them. So, I’m giving myself permission to spend some time every morning over a cup of coffee. This week, I’m going to re-examine my current subscriptions to know which ones I’d like to focus on and if there are any I should “unsubscribe” from so they don’t crowd my inbox. To help me get there, I’m reviewing this post on top ppc blogs and trying out a few other tools to help me stay focused and efficient.
- Look back at all that went well in 2017 to take inventory and note any missed opportunities to implement in 2018.
- Look up at a higher level (both 4Q and 2017 final results) to find that low-hanging fruit that has fallen under the radar or needs to be cleaned out.
- Look back down at a bird’s eye to re-examine account maintenance, reporting, client communication, etc., to see how I can improve.
- Look all around to see what else can be tweaked.
- Rinse, lather and repeat monthly or quarterly.
Better Attribution. I’d like to better incorporate attribution beyond last-click into reporting. While I’ve found tools like GA Multi-Channel Funnels helpful for my own campaign optimizations, I’ve often found it tricky to incorporate this type of data into meaningful reports that are still understandable to clients who may not come from an overly technical background.
What are your goals for the new year? Let us know in the comments below!