We’re excited to have interviewed Los Angeles SEO expert Robb Fahrion, from Flying V Group, for the next installment of our Featured SEO Expert Series!
Robb Fahrion is a co-founder and partner at Flying V Group. He is passionate about helping businesses grow using the power of the internet. Fahrion graduated from Chapman University in Orange, Calif., and resides in Costa Mesa, Calif. He enjoys writing about digital marketing, helping his clients turn their dreams into reality.
What is the most challenging thing about running a successful paid advertising campaign through Google?
“Paid advertising is always changing and so is your client’s market. We have to stay on top of everything, from changing algorithms to changing consumer behaviors and more, so this presents obvious challenges. In order to combat this, we have invested heavily in reporting software to get insights quickly and take corrective action as soon as possible. However, it is still a challenge and we must correct the course quite often. The one piece of advice I can give is to always be ready to adapt and change. If something is not working, put together another plan and test it against your previous campaign.”
How does your agency stand out compared to other PPC agencies?
“Flying V Group does an incredible job with campaign setup and management. Starting with setup, we create extremely granular pay-per-click (PPC) accounts that allow us to easily adjust course or turn items on and off. For example, instead of targeting the United States, we are sure to set state boundaries. Why? So that we know which states are performing better than others. If an account is only targeting the U.S., it is impossible to know where the best performance is coming from. This is just one example, but I would say that we are very particular in the way we set up or reconfigure accounts.
“Secondly, optimization. We just do more of it. Our team is managing microdata and results on a daily basis and making small, minor tweaks and changes to drive macro results. We spend so much time within each account on a monthly basis that it is almost guaranteed we will see improvements month-over-month.”
Can you share a success story from a national PPC campaign? Please provide details and metrics.
“Yes, my favorite success story comes from an ultrasound wholesaler. When we first took over the account, we dove straight into the actual search queries. We immediately discovered that tons of traffic (to the tune of $65,000) was being driven to keywords that were designed for someone to schedule an appointment to get an ultrasound. Well, our customer was selling ultrasounds! So obviously someone was not paying attention to the granular PPC data. By uncovering this, we were immediately able to turn off unwanted traffic and focus on actual keyword queries that would drive business. From there on out it was win after win because we unlocked $65,000 in wasted budget. “
How do you set fair expectations for new PPC clients?
“You have to look at the market and forecasts and just be honest with clients. Utilize standard PPC metrics for click-through rate (CTR), cost-per-acquisition (CPA), etc., and lay out the expectations. It is okay to tell a client that they do not have enough ad spend to make a mark. This will SAVE them money in the long run, and it ensures that you are putting their best interests first. At the end of the day, the data is the data. We will see improvements over time, but sometimes client expectations are outlandish, so you must wrangle them in or decide to not work with that specific client.”
How long do you usually tell clients it will take to see results?
“We require a six-month minimum commitment. We feel that regardless of industry, six months is going to give us ample time and opportunity to either prove the efficacy of the plan or determine that a completely different course of action needs to be considered. Three months is too short, in my opinion, but I think six months is the happy medium. We generally will see results right out of the gate, but this period of time ensures our team will be able to show what we can do for our client – whether good or bad – depending on the business.”
Any predictions about the future of paid search?
“Paid search is going to get tougher. The landscape is so competitive and companies are going to need someone monitoring performance on a consistent basis. I think being more creative also needs to be injected into paid search. Not enough time is put into the actual strategy of the campaign. I see more often than not so many set-it-and-forget-it campaigns that are not maximizing the benefits of things like changing and testing ad copy, utilization of responsive search ads, location segmentation and more. You must use all the different bells and whistles that come with a PPC account in order to be successful.”
Are you familiar with Bing ads? Do you feel they can be effective?
“Yes, we run Bing Ads quite often and I know that they can be effective. I find that the Bing demographic tends to be older and it’s quite simple why. PCs come with Bing as their default search engine quite often, and it never gets changed unless someone is technically savvy enough to download a new browser, which most older demos do not bother with. The platform leaves something to be desired compared to Google Ads, but the traffic tends to be cheaper and if you know that your demographic skews older in age, I think it makes a ton of sense. It is also wise to run Bing just to be able to compare. What a perfect way to A/B test platforms, assuming all else is the same.”
What do you think is the most important contributor to a successful PPC campaign?
“Patience and effort. As hard as it may be to convince a client to be patient, you have to try your best. These tools need time to get information in and figure out the best placement of the ads. As marketers, we are the puppet masters, but Google and Bing Ads control the show. We can give directives, but there is reliance on Google and Bing algorithms to make noticeable improvements. This is why we feel there is a strong correlation between ample ad spend based on an industry and account optimization or success. The more data in, the better the results!”
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