What are Single Persona Ad Groups (SPAGs)?

Single Persona Ad Groups

Single persona ad groups are an effective tool that PPC marketers can use to target advertisements more effectively and lower ad spend while increasing return-on-investment. This optimization technique requires that advertisers construct separate ad groups for a given campaign that correspond to defined customer personas. By targeting each customer personally separately, advertisers hope to present prospects with more integrated and contextually significant messages and offer that cost less and convert better.

To get a clear picture of how single persona ad groups work and why they’re effective, let’s break the term down into its component parts and look at them separately. To simplify things, let’s assume we’re advertising with Google AdWords, the largest and most popular PPC network.

What is an Ad Group?

Ad Groups are an important tool for organizing and managing advertising campaigns within Google AdWords. The AdWords platform allows a user with a newly created account to start a new advertising campaign and create any number of ad groups within that campaign. Each ad group includes two basic elements of importance:

  1.       Ad Options – Each ad group can be customized with its own unique settings and creative content. One of the most important decisions that advertisers make is how to design the creative for each ad group. What images, phrases or offers are most likely to resonate with the target prospect? Will every person targeted by this ad group be shown the same ad, or will there be several options or versions of the ad included in the ad group?
  2.       Keywords – For each ad group, advertisers must select which keywords will be targeted. A single ad group may target a single keyword, tens or keywords, or even hundreds in some cases.

A company may choose to run one, two or several ad groups as part of the same ad campaign. Ad groups can also be split up or organized in several different ways. A business with a robust product line, for example, might choose to create and customize a separate ad group for each of its products. It would create different advertisements for each product and integrate them with the appropriate keywords in a single ad group.

We think it is quite useful to separate ad groups within a given campaign according to customer personas by creating Single Persona Ad Groups. Before we explain exactly why let’s build on our understanding of ad groups with a look at customer personas in PPC advertising.

What is a Customer Persona?

A  customer persona is one of the most important tools that marketers use to understand the characteristics, thoughts, behaviors, and intentions of people who might be interested in their products. The creation of customer personas represents an attempt to leverage market research and real data into a comprehensive understanding of buyer characteristics, motivations, and demographics.

Creating customer personas is in some ways art, and in other ways, a science. Companies can use real data and market research to inform the process, but each customer persona is ultimately a fictional or semi-fictional representation of the ideal customer for a specific product. Some of the most important elements of a customer persona can include:

  •         Demographics – age, gender, location, income, and education level are all important aspects of the customer persona.
  •         Lifestyle – what does our ideal customer do all day? What are their hobbies and interests? Where do they find information? What media do they consume? How and where do they interact socially?
  •         Personality – what personality traits are important in the target customer? Are they extraverted or introverted? Are they conscientious? Neurotic?
  •         Goals & Challenges – a customer persona should usually be associated with a goal, challenge or problem that can be solved by clicking on your advertisement, responding to your offer or purchasing your product. An ideal customer is one whose problem is effectively solved by your company’s product or service.
  •         Values – what are the customer’s values? What do they care about? What is important to them and how do they see the world?
  •         Professional Information – professional information is very important for targeting customer personas in a B2B context. You may want to target individuals at a specific decision-making level, or whose role has specific performance objectives.

A company can construct unique customer personas for distinct groups of people who it feels may be interested in buying its products. A small company with a single product may have a single, highly specific ideal customer persona while a larger business with a broad product line might have constructed several buyer personas for each of its products.

How Do Single Persona Ad Groups Work?

The logic that underlies single persona ad groups is straight-forward.

A customer persona represents a group of prospective buyers that share common characteristics.

Given that the group shares common characteristics, we should be able to market to people that fit the persona in the same way (similar keywords, ad text, ad format, and landing page).

In some cases, we may identify multiple customer personas for the same product. Since these personas are different in their characteristics and motivations, we should have better results if we advertise to them differently (different keywords, ad text, landing pages, etc.)

As an example, you might imagine a car company that sells a coupe and a minivan. The customer persona for the coupe might be a male, aged 25-39 years with a college education who lives in a city and earns at least $40,000 per year. The customer persona for the minivan could be a woman, aged 40-55 years who lives in the suburbs with her partner and two kids – a soccer mom. However, an alternate persona for the minivan could be a male, aged 40-55 years, married with no kids and a trade degree who earns at least $100,000 annually – an electrician or plumber who needs a fuel-efficient vehicle with extra space.

With single persona ad groups, advertisers can customize creative content and choose different keywords to market separately to each identified segment of prospective customers.

Directive Consulting Builds Single Persona Ad Groups to Enhance PPC Ad Targeting

At Directive Consulting, we’ve noticed two major advantages when building and implementing single persona ad groups for our customers.

The first is superior messaging integration. With single persona ad groups, we’re able to closely integrate the keywords we target for a specific customer persona with the ad text and even the target landing page for that specific ad group. As a result, each person who clicks on our ads gets a highly targeted and contextually significant message that is more likely to result in a conversion.

The second is consistency. We want to make sure that the ads and landing pages we create are matching up effectively with the keywords that our prospects are searching for. With single persona ad groups, we can ensure that landing pages and ads are consistently addressing the goals and challenges that we identify in our customer personas.

As a bonus, well-constructed ad groups lead to higher quality scores for your advertisement, which directly results in lower advertising costs.

Are you ready to start enjoying the benefits of single personal ad groups? Get a free customized proposal today!

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