"It's Only a Mistake If You Do It Twice"

. Monday, March 16, 2009
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Unfortunately I can not take credit for this quote, however it is one of my favorites.

The internet is a relatively new tool for marketers. This means no one person is an expert. Of course some people are more proficient then others, but nobody can say I am the best online marketer. If you hear someone say this, I advice you not to believe much that comes out of his or her mouth.

One thing does separate great online marketers from not so great online marketers. That one thing is the ability to test and refine. Great online marketers are not afraid to take controlled risks, keyword controlled, in order to develop new more effective online marketing techniques.

Example: The MarketR team just finished implementing a Google AdWords strategy for the Sauder School of Business at UBC. The strategy focused on 3 geographic regions, China, India and Canada. We had no idea what keywords and ad variations would deliver results, so we tested and refined.
Step 1:
Using tools such as Google's keyword selector and Google Insights, we were able to develop a large list of potential keywords that were both generic and geographically specific. Our team of search marketing creatives developed a variety of ad variations for each geographic region.
Step 2:
We tested. We segmented each campaign so that we could easily see which keywords and ad variations were delivering the best results. We ran the campaign and continuously monitored the performance.
Step 3:
We analyzed. This is an important step that poor marketers and business owners miss often. Always reflect on everything you do, this is the driving force towards improvement. Unfortunately poor marketers are afraid to reflect because they are scared of what they might find. This forces them to implement the same flawed strategies over and over again.
Step 4:
We refined. We looked for keywords and ad variations that were doing well and we removed the ones that were not. We were able to see trends in each region that we could never have anticipated before testing. We leveraged these trends by increasing our budget around these high performing keywords.

Now our client has a focused, well refined and effective AdWords strategy that will deliver outstanding results for approximately one month. It might seem surprising that we only expect it to deliver great results for one month. However at MarketR we understand that the internet is continuously evolving, meaning you have to continuously test and refine new strategies to deliver exceptional results.

Don't be afraid to try new things. If it doesn't deliver results, stop doing it. If it does, continue doing it, and test ways to make it even better. Always reflect on how successful your marketing strategies are. Or risk throwing your money away.