PPC Associates Is Now 3Q Digital

Sep. 17

I’m thrilled today to share a mini interview with my good friend, David Rodnitzky. David is a true leader in the digital marketing industry. David and his agency are also long time sponsors and supporter of PPC Ian. I have some exciting news! David’s agency, PPC Associates, is now 3Q Digital. You can read all about the rebrand here. 3Q is one of the best digital marketing agencies around, I cannot say enough great stuff about them. Want to learn all about 3Q Digital? Let’s jump into my mini interview with David…

3Q Digital

Ian: David, congratulations on your big announcement!

David: Thanks Ian. It’s been a long journey to get to this point and I’m excited it’s finally arrived!

Ian: How did you decide to re-brand your company?

David: Over the last couple of years our clients have increasingly asked us to do more than “just SEM” for them. The most frequent requests we got involved SEO, Facebook PPC, display advertising, and creative work. We responded to these needs by building out dedicated teams to service each of these areas. Whereas three years ago 100% of our spend was SEM, today almost 20% is a combination of Facebook and display, plus we have about 10% of our customers also using us to manage their SEO. Our name – PPC Associates – implies that all we do is PPC (or SEM, same difference!). While we still see SEM as our core offering, we now have many people on the team that focus on other online marketing services, so it just made sense to come up with a new name that wasn’t so PPC-centric!

Ian: What’s in the future for 3Q Digital?

David: In the short term, we want to just get better at what we are already doing – SEM, SEO, Facebook PPC and display. In the long-term, we are continuing to evaluate different marketing channels that are complementary to our existing channels. If we think we can do an awesome job of servicing clients in these new channels – and we hear from clients that they need help in these areas – we would certainly consider expanding into new areas.

Ian: As a marketer, it must have been so much fun thinking through your branding strategy. How did you arrive at your new brand?

David: We actually had an internal contest where we asked everyone on the team to submit recommendations for the new name. We got about 100 responses and then we narrowed those 100 down to 17 semi-finalists. We had a management team vote on the 17 finalists and ended up with two finalists. We submitted the two finalists back to the greater team to vote and we went with the one that got the most votes. To give you a sense of how much we believe in democracy, the name I voted for lost!

Ian: David, huge thank you for the mini interview. As always, it’s such a pleasure connecting with one of the top marketers ever. I have so much respect for you, your amazing team, and your incredible business. You are an inspiration in our industry!

David: Thanks Ian. We are big fans of you and PPC Ian. If you decide to change your name from PPC Ian to something more generic, let me know, I can help!

That’s it for today, everyone. Make sure to head on over to the 3Q Digital website, and make sure to check out their amazing blog.

3Q Digital Logo © 3QDigital.com

PPC Associates Must-Have 2013 Facebook Ads Guide

Jul. 24

I’m a huge fan of PPC Associates Digital Marketing Agency. I’m personal friends with their co-founder and CEO, David Rodnitzky. I’m also great friends with their several other team members at PPC Associates including Hillary Read, their Director of Marketing. I truly appreciate their breadth of experience across all channels of digital marketing. I also truly appreciate the fact that they know how to market their own agency, the sign of a truly passionate marketing team. As just one example: PPC Associates runs one of the greatest digital marketing blogs on the Internet.

Today, I wanted to share with you the brand new PPC Associates 2013 Guide To Facebook Advertising. I thought it would make perfect sense given that Facebook just announced their second quarter earnings and beat estimates handsomely (thanks to digital marketing professionals like you and me). Right now is the time to advertise on Facebook, and PPC Associates is there to guide you every step of the way with their free tutorial.

I really like this guide, and here’s why:

  • It’s jam-packed with 24 pages of free insights.
  • It talks about all the possible objectives of advertising on Facebook. Facebook is a lot different than traditional search marketing. Perhaps you’re looking to drive brand awareness. Perhaps you’re looking to generate likes. Perhaps you’re looking to drive direct response conversions. PPC Associates covers all of these objectives, and discusses the different types of ads and how they relate to each objective.
  • PPC Associates goes into incredible detail to educate the reader about all types of Facebook ads. I’m talking about marketplace ads (marketplace standard ad, marketplace event ad, marketplace like ad, and marketplace application ad), sponsored stories (page likes, check-ins, and page posts), mobile advertisements (mobile sponsored stories, mobile promoted posts, mobile page posts, and mobile app install ads), premium ads (photo, video, question, status, event, link, app ad, video app ad, standard ad, and video standard ad), sponsored search results, and Facebook Exchange Ads (FBX). Wow, that was a looooong list! I wanted to list it all out, however, to show you the comprehensiveness of this great resource.
  • This guide also dives into a ton of other topics: targeting options, custom audiences, metrics, and more.
  • It’s written in a logical, easy-to-follow format. It’s a true reference that you can share with your entire team.

When it comes to digital marketing, I really enjoy learning from agencies. They get to see so much, across so many different verticals. PPC Associates’ amazing wealth of knowledge comes through in their guide and I highly recommend downloading your free copy.

Facebook Advertising PPC Associates

Image in this post © PPCAssociates.com

Check Out My Geo-Targeting Tips

May. 03

I’m a huge fan of geo-targeting. While it’s been around forever, there are so many unique and great ways in which you can leverage advanced geo-targeting. So, when I got the opportunity to write a guest post on the amazing PPC Associates blog, I thought it would be a super idea to share my Top 5 Geo-Targeting Tips. Have you heard of PPC Associates? They are Silicon Valley’s SEM Agency, and have a truly great blog (one of my favorites). Also, they have one of the best teams around. I’m really honored that my guest post got a lot of interest and even made Search Engine Land’s Day In Search, May 2, 2013. Please check it out and let me know what you think! Do you have any special geo-targeting strategies?

5 Geo-Targeting Tips

Image in this post © PPCAssociates.com

Check Out My PPC Landing Page Tips

Mar. 17

Last week, I attended SMX West and bumped into my good friend Hillary Read from PPC Associates, Silicon Valley’s SEM Agency. PPC Associates is a great friend of yours truly, PPC Ian. From time to time, I have the pleasure of guest posting on the amazing PPC Associates blog, and today I wanted to share with you my latest guest post: A Landing Page Checklist For PPC Pros. This post went live last week on Wednesday, March 13th and wanted to highlight it here in case you have not seen it yet!

PPC Associates Guest Blog Post

With ever increasing competition on Google AdWords and Bing Ads, how do you stay ahead? Well, you certainly need to be a world class campaign manager. You need to be on top of your game when it comes to keyword generation, account structure, match types, negative words, ad copy, bid strategy, beta testing, tracking, cross-channel advertising, reporting/analytics, and so much more. However, the lever that perhaps holds the most leverage is landing page testing. Increase your conversion rate and your media margin will immediately expand. You can either pocket the profits or reinvest them via bid increases. Often, it is advised to bid higher since you will get exponentially more traffic volume and oftentimes increased dollar margin, especially if you look at cross-channel attribution (although at slightly lower percentage margin). Thanks PPC Associates for the opportunity to guest post, make sure to head on over and read my guest post today!

Image of PPC Associates © PPCAssociates.com

Interview: Sean Marshall From PPC Associates

Feb. 16

Today I am truly lucky and honored to interview Sean Marshall, Senior Director of Client Services at PPC Associates. PPC Associates is Silicon Valley’s SEM Agency. They are awesome! A while back, I had the honor of interviewing their CEO and Co-Founder, David Rodnitzky. Today, I am so excited to interview Sean because his experience is truly exceptional. Joining PPC Associates as the 5th member of the client services team, Sean has enjoyed 3 years of success and is now part of a 50-member team. Without further ado, let’s jump into the interview:

Sean Marshall

Ian: Sean, thank you so much for interviewing with me. I know PPC Ian readers are going to be truly thrilled with this one.

Sean: Thanks for having me Ian.

Ian: You have built an exceptional career in paid search. How did you first get started?

Sean: I took kind of an odd route. I started my career in lead qualification with a company called Tippit in 2006 and quickly realized making 100+ calls a day wasn’t really for me. I ended up pivoting into a freelance recruiting role for them and the first position I helped them fill was that of SEM Manager. I liked the idea of recruiting as a way to explore the job landscape but half of my reqs were for SEM. The exposure to these PPC jobs and the folks we were recruiting got me thinking: hey, I should be doing that.

Ian: How has your career evolved over the years? How did you grow your career in online marketing?

Sean: Well, after getting snubbed by David at Mercantila (true story), I wound up at Webtrends working on their SEM tool. It was an account management gig but more of a hybrid services/tech/SEM role. It taught me a lot and I got exposure to all sorts of programs. In the meantime, I’d kept in touch with David and heard he was getting his agency off the ground. After about a 6 months of back and forth, he decided it was time to scale the operation and I jumped at the chance.

Ian: What’s it like at PPC Associates? What’s your favorite thing about working at PPC Associates?

Sean: I love to build things, break them, and then build them back up again. Working at PPCA gave me the chance to do that. We were a small scrappy team of 6 when I joined and no one really had agency experience. The company was founded by in-house marketers and combining that mindset with some agency experience was a winning formula. I was able to soak in all sorts of marketing knowledge, contribute things they didn’t know about and then teach it to a new wave of account managers after that.

Ian: You’re a leader at PPC Associates. What are some of the most important lessons you have learned about team leadership? Any recommendations for those just starting out in people management?

Sean: Everyone wants to get into management until they actually start managing… and realize how hard it is. The reason is pretty simple – managers put out fires. Now if your entire job is putting out fires, you should probably rethink your process but that doesn’t mean you won’t deal with tough situations. Having a thick skin and understanding that a large part of the job is managing problems and crises is key. The reward comes in creating and implementing solutions to drive continuous improvement.

Ian: What’s your favorite thing about online marketing? What part of the job do you enjoy the most?

Sean: I’’m definitely one of those guys that appreciates the quantifiable aspects of what we do. I’m a poker player and I need a way to keep score. Tracking and measurement are addicting. That said, I love that it’s still a people business. Sure you can bury your head in excel and AdWords editor but the crux of this is to understand audiences and, on the agency side, clients. The mix of math and people means things will be different every day and if you’re tired of one, you can retreat to the other any given day (just not everyday).

Ian: Any tips for PPC Ian readers looking to grow their career in online marketing?

Sean: Be patient and keep grinding. The internet never shuts off and the work never stops. You need to invest the time but make sure you’re being productive. Doing busy work just to say you worked 60 hours a week won’t accomplish anything. Take the same quantitative approach youdd bring to a marketing campaign to measure the impact your work has and use that to adjust where you spend your time.

Managing online programs can feel like running on treadmill so you need to find finish lines. If you can’t find ways to say “mission accomplished” for various projects, it just feels like you’re perpetually working and that will drive anyone crazy.

Ian: Any campaign optimization tips that are top-of-mind for you right now?

Sean: Attribution is definitely top of mind. We’re focused on an RFP of various attribution/tracking vendors to make sure we can offer clients the best of what’s out there. Each channel influences the other in different ways – not to mention cross device implications. Last click is dead!

Ian: Looking forward to 2013 and the future, how do you see online advertising evolving? What can smart professionals do to stay ahead of the curve?

Sean: Well if you listen to everyone out there, it’s mobile and social. They can’t be looked at in a vacuum though. Mobile commerce sucks and will never equal desktop commerce (now it might generate more traffic but the conversion issues wont magically fix themselves). Connect the dots to measure the true impact. Beyond that – I’d pay more attention to tablets than smart phones. Maybe I’m too fixated on usability but tablets (and eventually larger screened phones) will have a greater impact than people think.

Ian: Sean, thank you so much for the amazing interview. This has been a true pleasure. Any closing thoughts/advice for PPC Ian readers?

Sean: There’s a lot of great content out there – keep reading blogs like these!!

Ian: Thanks again, Sean! Wishing you and everyone at PPC Associates all the best, you guys are true leaders in our industry!

Image of Sean Marshall © Sean Marshall