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Posts Tagged ‘Job’

How to Win With The Warm and Fuzzies

Monday, June 3rd, 2013


If you take a look at the following contest, you’ll probably realize that the losing ad actually offers more specific and believable claims while also providing a satisfaction guarantee (aka a risk reversal), while the losing ad doesn’t do any of these things.

So from a logical perspective, the losing ad SHOULD have won. And yet not only did it not win, but it got sledged down by the actual winning ad by a stomping 294% increase in Click-Through Rates.

And the answer to why lies in the ability of the winning ad to give the searcher the warm and fuzzies around doing business with them. In other words, the winning ad focuses on an emotional appeal. Here’s how:

  • The headline, “Need a Great Developer,” has more emotional punch than “Hire Better Developers.” Most people prefer “Great” to “Better.”
  • If “Top of the Line Developer Want to Join Your Team,” that pretty much means you’re awesome.
  • When you’re able to hire developers “From An Elite Talent Pool Of The Top 1%,” that means you’re about to hire a free-lance Developer from a job board. Not nearly as warm and fuzzy as having those Top Developers WANTING to join your team, right?
  • Finally, the losing ad’s “Pay Only if Satisfied” copy might logically offer a risk reversal, but emotionally, it raises the idea that you might NOT be satisfied and/or that there is an additional fee involved perhaps over and above the developers pay. Both are emotionally-negative warning flags.

So today’s Tip from the Boosters is to think past the logical aspect of your PPC Ad Copy and to look at the emotional message, too. Does your copy subtly flatter your prospects? Does it give them the warm and fuzzies? If not, try testing out some copy that does. You might be surprise at just how much of a boost it can give to your Click-Through Rates.


It’s Not As Obvious As You Think!

Tuesday, March 19th, 2013


In their blockbuster book, Made to Stick, Chip and Dan Heath tell the tale of Tappers and Listeners. A PhD Psychology student at Stanford divided a test subjects into two groups, tappers and listeners. Here’s how they tell it:

Tappers received a list of 25 well known songs, such as “Happy Birthday to You” and “The Star Spangled Banner.” Each Tapper was asked to pick out a song and tap out the rhythm to a Listener (by knocking on a table). The Listener’s job was to guess the song, based on the rhythm being tapped.

During the experiment 120 songs were tapped out. So guess how many of them were correctly guessed by the listeners? Seriously, go ahead and take a guess on what percentage of those songs the listeners managed to identify.

Answer: only three songs were guessed correctly. That’s 3 out of 120, or 2.5%!

So what’s the point?

The tappers all thought that the listeners would probably guess at least half the songs they tapped. Why? Because the tappers were hearing the song in their head as they tapped. But the listeners don’t have that tune playing in their head. They just hear a disconnected bunch of taps.

And that same Tapper-Listener disconnect — called “The Curse of Knowledge” — occurs all the time between PPC Ad Writers and Searchers, especially if the ad writer works for the business.

When you’re knowledge of the business vastly exceeds the customers, you almost begin to assume that everyone else knows what you know. That it’s obvious. And that’s one way you can unwittingly sabotage your PPC Ad Results. This contest is a perfect example of that:

The losing ad thought it was obvious that Turquoise Jewelry crafted by Southwest Indian Tribes would be the traditional silver and turquoise designs that the employees in that company are doubtlessly familiar with — jewelry they probably thought that EVERYBODY would be familiar with.

But there are lots of styles of turquoise jewelry, and not everyone is familiar with the kind crafted by the Indian Tribes listed. That’s why specifying “Steling Silver Turquoise Jewelry,” as the winning ad does, helps boost performance — it fills the listener in on the tune the advertiser is singing, rather than assuming they can fill it in on their own.

So take a tip from the Boosters and don’t assume it’s obvious.

Ask yourself what you already ARE assuming the searcher knows that maybe she doesn’t. Then test ads that make that information more explicit, and see what kind of results you get. In this case it got a CTR boost of 38%


Film-able Moments Boost PPC Ad Response

Monday, November 5th, 2012


The best overall writing advice I’ve ever come across is to think of your words like a movie camera. Point your camera at the action, zoom in on it, make jump cuts to heighten the action and suspense. SHOW the action. Make the story come alive as a movie in the reader’s mind.

This, as you can imagine, is especially important advice for screenwriters, who are commanded to write “film-able moments.” Abstractions can’t be directly captured on film. Interior thoughts can’t be captured on film. Neither can most statements of fact.

What can be captured on film? Actions. So the job of the screenwriter is to communicate abstractions and thoughts and emotions, and facts through action & Dialogue. It’s great advice that applies to a lot more than just screenwriting. And while there isn’t always opportunity to use this advice in PPC Ad copy, it happens often enough to make it useful. This contest is a nice example of that:

The winning ad, penned by Booster PrincessH, lifted click-through-rates by 57% – not bad by anybody’s standards!.

And what accounts for this difference?

It’s not a difference in the content of the message. There are no facts or offers provided by one ad that aren’t mentioned by the other. Nor is it a difference in claims.

Nope! The entire difference between the two ads consists of film-able vs. non-filmable copy.

  • “View Local Vacancies Online Now” invites users to imagine themselves doing just that! It’s an action oriented invitation.
  • “Find Mechanical Engineer jobs here” wins the keyword competition, but loses out in it’s ability to capture the imaginations. It’s just not as inherently film-able.
  • “Use Our Complete Job Search Engine!” is another action-oriented film-able piece of copy. You can picture yourself using their search engine to look for a job.
  • “the most complete job site online” isn’t as film-able. It’s a non-active claim.

At the end of the day, people looking for help finding Mechanical Engineer Jobs will look at the winning ad and see themselves finding a local vacancy through the client’s search engine. And people looking at the losing ad will just see less-than-credible claims being made.

And that’s how the winning ad boosted CTR by 57% without changing the content of the ad one iota and giving up a slight lead in keyword use.

So are your ad writers boosting up your PPC Ads with film-ables, or are they weighing them down with abstractions and non-credible claims?


Logic vs. Image — Bet on Image

Monday, August 13th, 2012


Logically, it would be better to abbreviate words in a PPC Ad, because the meaning is still conveyed, but you save characters. Emotionally, an abbreviation just doesn’t have the same affective impact as the word, because it requires longer to translate.

Logically, it shouldn’t really matter whether free shipping or some other enticement is on the first or second line of body copy — the offer is still included in the ad, and the searcher is obviously reading the copy, so… Emotionally, the sequencing and placement of your offers/words makes a HUGE difference.

For copywriters, it helps to think in terms of mental images. What mix of mental pictures, sounds, emotions, tastes, and so on run through the mind of the searcher when she reads your copy. Your job is to create and sequence powerful images.

So with that in mind, take a look at this contest — can you tell me what the deciding difference is?

So, there isn’t that much different between the two ads, right?

The winning ad drops the “Fast shipping,” probably because “fast shipping” is meaningless to most consumers. Free shipping is powerful and can be quite compelling. Fast shipping, on the other hand, is expected and therefore not worth mentioning, so dropping it was a good move on the part of BoostCTR ad writer, WordIsBorn.

The winning ad swaps out “Buy” in favor of “Shop,” another good move. And this one certainly involves mental imagery, as the emotional associations with “Shop” are much better than those for “Buy.” People like to shop. They like buying decidedly less so, as it involves the pain of parting with their money. To wit, there’s no such thing as “shoppers remorse.” Another good call by WordIsBorn

But the real difference is in the use of “T-Shirts, Hoodies & More” vs. “T-Shirts & More.” Why? Because even though your brain can logically process the “& More” to mean, “and additional imprinted items,” it has a tough time picturing those unspecified, additional items. “T-shits & More” creates the mental image of “Mostly T-shirts and a few accessories.”

“T-Shirts, Hoodies & More,” on the other hand, supplies the imagination of the searcher with one of those “& More” items, creating a decidedly different mental image, to the tune of “T-Shirts, Hoodies, and other imprinted clothing.” This change isn’t merely a good move — it’s a brilliant one.

Logically, the two ads should be equivalent. Emotionally the difference is big enough to account for a very emotional greater than doubling of click-through rate — or a 119% increase in CTR, for you logical types.

Either way, it’s a difference worth thinking & getting excited about.


ATFQ for PPC Success

Friday, August 10th, 2012


Ever heard of ATFQ before? The polite version is “Answer the Flipping Question!” And it’s often the key to writing better performing PPC Ads.


Because any search engine query is itself a question. And the only job of search results — including paid search results — is to provide answers. The more relevant the answers, the more clicked that particular result will become.

But here’s the kicker: while PPC Ads DO have to use the searcher’s keywords as part of their answer, the answers have to go beyond that.

PPC Ads have to answer the obvious question AND related questions and concerns as part of the context of the search. Today’s Win of the Week is a perfect example of that. So go ahead and see if you can’t figure out the winner:

With any luck, you guessed Ad B, which outperformed Ad A from 123%. Here’s why:

The First Line of Copy

Notice that Ad A talks about “Kermit the Frog” whereas Ad B just uses “Kermit,” which let’s it fit & more on the first line rather than running it over to the second line.

The Second Line of Copy

Here’s where Ad B ATFQ, when Ad A doesn’t. “For Kids, Teens & Adults” reassures the searcher than no matter who she is costume shopping for, she’ll find costumes she can use. Ad A doesn’t.


It also can’t hurt that the winning ad appends a “/muppets” to the end of the base URL whereas the losing ad doesn’t.