Performance-based marketing is a beautiful thing. It’s great for those who are perhaps skeptical of marketing — or maybe marketers — because with performance marketing, it’s about results, data, and measurable impact.
No surprises, no fluff, and no hidden costs. You get exactly what you pay for, whether it’s phone calls, form submissions, impressions, website visits, or whatever else you’re after.
So what can performance marketing tactics do for you and your business? What strategies might a typical campaign consist of? Let’s do a data-driven dive.
Your Audience Is Online
In 2015, digital ad revenue in the U.S. was nearly $60 billion — an increase of 20% from 2014. This year, for the first time ever, digital ad spending will surpass TV advertising dollars.
All that to say, your audience is online. This is confirmed by our industry research and reader surveys. Across our brands, we’ve seen upticks in internet usage, social media activity, and smartphone ownership over the last few years. Not to mention an absolute explosion of mobile advertising.
Company drivers, owner-operators, fleet executives, distributors, aggregates managers, landscapers, and construction bosses are, like the rest of us, increasingly spending time online. The question is, how do you reach these unique audiences?
Define Your Win
First thing’s first: What’s the ‘win’ you’re looking to achieve? That’s the start of each and every performance marketing campaign. Common ‘wins’ include:
- Online sales
- Inbound phone calls
- Form conversions
- Website traffic
- Brand awareness
- Content downloads
- Video views
Once you clarify what you’re after, it’s time to belly up to the digital advertising buffet. Here’s a sampling of tactics you can have hearty helpings of.
Media targeting is the term we use for advertising on existing newsletters and websites. This performance marketing technique lets you connect with a niche audience. If you wanted to reach fleet executives, for instance, you could place a banner ad on the Commercial Carrier Journal website.
Or if you wanted to reach people in the heavy construction industry, you could get space in Equipment World’s newsletter.
If you want to go the media targeting route, most website and newsletter ads are priced on a cost-per-click (CPC) basis. In this case your ads will display until your budget reaches capacity.
You can also set geo-targeting parameters on your ads so they only display for the location you set, whether that’s a radius, state, or route.
The other day I was reading the news online and saw an ad for Cheez-its. In Spanish. How did they know about my weakness for cheesy cracker snacks and my interest in Español?
That, my friends, is the power of targeted display — which shows ads based on websites visited, searches conducted, or other content you’ve read online. Which in my case apparently includes keeping tabs on the latest developments involving Cheez-it Grooves.
You can reach your audience on display network websites using multiple targeting options.
Tagged audience –
Reaching users who have interacted with brands through different display networks. Our company driver-focused Truckers News brand, for instance, has a tagged audience of 1,906,000, while, which is geared toward owner-operators, has a tagged audience of 490,000.
Keyword targeting –
Using keyword targeting to target relevant websites.
Gmail sponsored promotions –
Targeting Gmail users subscribing to competitors’ newsletters with banners in their inbox.
Search Engine Marketing
Search engines are where most people go in the buying and research phase, or when looking for a new job. Which is why a crucial part of business success today involves targeting the correct keywords, and making sure you rank highly in Google.
Through search engine optimization (SEO), you earn traffic through organic, unpaid means, like making sure your website is responsive and quick to load.
Search engine marketing (SEM), on the other hand, involves buying your way to the top of search engines. By bidding on keywords related to your business, you can target people who are probably interested in what you have to offer.
SEM allows for some pretty robust ROI tracking and flexible optimization (you can tweak your budget or keywords as you wish), which makes it a valuable tool in your overall performance marketing arsenal.
Facebook and YouTube Advertising
You can reach specific, custom audiences through paid advertising campaigns on Facebook. Your ads can appear as sponsored posts in the news feeds of your ideal prospects, and be supplemented by ads on the right hand rail of the news feed.
Through a brand’s tagged audience, you can utilize YouTube’s advertising options to ensure your videos are found by the right people. Here are the ad options YouTube offers:
Use pre-roll ads before a prospect’s chosen video.
Bid on keywords relevant to your videos to find prospects.
Add suggested videos to the right hand rail.
Job Aggregators and Job Boards
If you’re looking to hire drivers, job aggregators (think Indeed, Craigslist, Zip Recruiter, LinkUp, Simply Hired, etc.) are a prime space to promote your opportunities and find the specific people you need.
It’s About You
Ultimately, performance-based marketing is about putting you in the driver’s seat. You set a budget, track your ROI, monitor your campaign’s progress, and tweak as you see fit. Or, if you’re so inclined, you can set a budget and hand it off to a Google Premier Partner like Randall-Reilly who can maximize the potential of performance marketing techniques.
Regardless of your goals or industry, performance marketing is a great way to reap measurable, substantial online advertising benefits.