In today’s digital landscape PPC marketing for insurance agents is an incredible strategy you can implement to help you stand out from your competition. If you’re new to PPC it can seem like an overwhelming task to get started. That’s why we put together this beginner’s guide on Google and Facebook PPC marketing for insurance agents. We’ll cover the basics of how to create, manage, and optimize ads on these platforms so you can grow your business.
PPC stands for pay-per-click and is a model of internet marketing in which advertisers pay a fee each time one of their ads is clicked. Essentially, it’s a way of buying visits to your site, rather than attempting to “earn” those visits organically.
There are many platforms where you can use PPC marketing such as Instagram, Youtube, Linkedin, and more. However, for this article, we want to focus on the platforms that experience the most users and traffic. With Facebook having more than 2 billion users and Google having more than 5 billion searches a day! these are key platforms that should be part of your broader marketing strategy.
Google Ads for Insurance Agents
Google Ads is the most widely used advertising platform. The sheer volume of searches combined with their complicated algorithms used to make their advertising platform work seamlessly, there is a lot of information you need to know to ensure your marketing campaign and ad dollars are put to good use! For more information check out the Google Ads How It Works home page for a step by step walkthrough of the platform.
Before you jump in and start advertising with Google, there are a few steps you need to take. They will help set you up for success and ensure an easy set-up process.
6 Steps For PPC Marketing for Insurance Agents to Be Successful
1. Set Your Budget
With Google ads there are 2 ways in which you can budget your money:
- Daily Budget: How much you’re willing to spend per day
- Bids: How much you’re willing to spend on a keyword if searched and clicked
When first starting, it is a good idea to spread your budget evenly across all of your campaigns until you have an idea of what works best for your business. However, it can be adjusted based on the service or industry you want to promote the most, for example, workers’ compensation insurance versus professional liability insurance for restaurants or landscapers. A great tool to cater to your core customer is Wheelhouse. It allows you to create custom landing pages for any demographic or industry.
2. Picking The Right Keywords
When starting your PPC advertising, it can be difficult to achieve the desired results on your first campaign by tackling the biggest and most obvious keywords (i.e “Commercial Insurance”, “Business Insurance”).
General phrases like that tend to generate a high volume of searchers, which is good, but it also means a high cost to show your ad. In addition, these terms tend to be somewhat generic, and putting your money towards clicks that are not attracting the right people means wasting both your time and money.
It is more practical to create smaller groups of related and very targeted phrases that will ensure both your ad and keywords are relevant.
The volume of searches may be significantly lower, but so is the cost associated with advertising for those words. By choosing specific phrases (such as “insurance for landscapers in Texas”) means you have both a cost-effective ad and a highly intended searcher. It also helps you see what works without spending a lot of money on stuff that doesn’t.
It is also important to understand how Google handles keywords on their advertising platform. In addition to determining what keyword you want your ad to show when users type it into the search bar, you need to determine if there are additional variations of the keyword that make sense for your business. Google calls these match types.
Here are the 4 Keyword Match Types:
- Broad Match Type
- Modified Broad Match
- Phrase Match
- Exact Match
Google provides a ton of resources to help you understand their platform so you can see positive results with your ads, after all, it’s in their best interest to see you succeed. To better understand match types, check out this article from Google.
3. Set your Landing Page
A landing page is a page your potential client will land on after clicking your ad. In order for your ads to perform as you expect, the ad, keywords, and landing page need to align and be relevant to the client. Creating highly relevant landing pages for your ads is a key advantage in the Wheelhouse platform.
Your landing page should also have a clear point of conversion, meaning a place where potential clients can do the action your ad told them about. For instance, if you want them to sign-up for a newsletter, you would ask for their email address. If your ad told them they could “learn more” your landing page should have them fill out a form where you can get in touch with them. Finally, if your ad asked them to “get a quote” your landing page would take them through that process.
4. Creating Ad Copy
For Google ads, you have up to 90 characters to highlight the details of your product or service. So with a limited description here are a few best practices when it comes to effective ad copy.
- Leverage keywords where you can
- Always include a call to action (i.e “Learn More”, “Sign up”)
- Focus on product/service benefits
The way you describe and present your product or service can be very important to how potential clients respond. For inspiration, check out this Google Ads best practices tutorial.
5. Track Ad Performance
Once you have determined your budget, keywords, ad copy, and set up a proper landing page. It’s time to launch your ads and begin tracking their performance. By reviewing and analyzing your ads, you can determine changes that need to be made to get the results you want.
Some common metrics to look at to determine ad performance include:
- Click through Rate: Of the people who viewed your ad how many people clicked your ad through the landing page
- Quality Score: How relevant your keywords, ad, and landing page are.
- Conversion Rate: How many total people completed a trackable conversion which is detailed in this Google tutorial (i.e inquiry fill form, online purchase, phone call).
- Cost per Conversion: How much each of your conversions is costing your business
- Cost per Click: The actual price you pay for each click
Understanding these metrics can help you to create better-performing ads as well as why current ads may not be performing to expectations.
For example, a low-quality score could mean your ad copy is not relevant to your keywords or your keywords are too broad for your target audience. By knowing the data behind the ad you can make more informed decisions.
6. Optimize Your Ads
Optimizing is simple. Typically you should allow your campaign to run for about 7 days from the last significant edit. This allows Google’s algorithm to complete the learning phase.
The learning phase can be defined as the time it takes for the platform’s algorithm to learn from recent, significant changes. By then Google has gathered enough data to help you make an informed decision on what works and what doesn’t.
By going through your campaign and looking at your keywords. You will be able to see which ones are being searched more often and at what cost, meaning the cost per click for a specific keyword. From there you may begin to see a pattern with some of your keywords that are not performing well.
By removing poorly performing keywords and refining those that are performing well you can significantly improve results. From there you can test new ads against your highest performing campaigns to find ways to continuously improve.
To further optimize you can also add negative keywords. These are words that prevent your ad from being shown if they are being searched. Examples could be “Insurance Claims”, “Insurance Marketing”, etc. Focus on including words that do not apply to what you are advertising. Google will help you identify words they believe are not relevant to your business and ads and make suggestions about words you can add to your negative keyword list. You can search for these words in the “search term” report on your ad platform. Review these routinely to ensure the best performance of your ads. For more optimization tips check out this quick video by Google on ways to optimize your ads.
Google ads can be complex, but extremely effective. Using Google Ads is a straightforward approach to getting directly in front of clients actively looking for your insurance products.
Facebook ads for insurance agents are slightly different than Google Ads but just as effective. It has extremely powerful targeting capabilities as well as tends to have a cheaper cost per action compared to Google. Despite being primarily used for B2C marketing, it can also be leveraged for B2B by growing brand awareness.
So let’s dive deeper into using Facebook PPC marketing for your insurance business.
1. Set Your Campaign Objective
The first step to any Facebook PPC campaign is to be clear on what you want your ads to do! Many individuals starting out have difficulty with their first campaign because they choose the wrong objective.
It’s important to have an idea of what the objective to be. Objectives such as traffic to the website, conversion to sale, lead to booked appointments, so on and so forth are common business goals. By choosing the correct campaign objective, Facebook will help you navigate the ad set-up as well as optimize your ad campaign for what you are hoping to achieve.
Facebook’s campaign objectives are meant to be the first stepping stone in building your ad campaign. In general, the best practice is to choose the objective that is closest to your current advertising goals.
- Awareness: Objectives that generate interest in your product or service
- Consideration: Objectives that get people to start thinking about your business and look for more information about it.
- Conversion: objectives that encourage people who are interested in your business to purchase or use your product or service.
Here is a quick guide to give you some more information on the different objectives.
2. Select The Right Audience
Selecting an audience is an extremely important step when creating and optimizing your campaigns. When going through this step it is important to understand how Facebook ads are set up.
There are three levels of creating a Facebook ad. You have the campaign, ad set, and ad. In a campaign, you can have more than one ad associated with it, which is referred to as an ad set. This applies when you want to create multiple ads with the same objective, audience, and budget but different ad copy or graphics.
So when creating your audience you are creating the foundation for your first campaign!
Unlike keywords in Google ads, you are targeting people based on interests, behaviors, demographics, and geographic regions. You can go as broad or narrow as you would like whether that be a few thousand people to a few million people. You can check out this tutorial on how to use the interface to specify your audience.
It is important to know who your core demographic is as you don’t want to throw away money on an audience that is not producing results. For example, if you are looking to target landscapers in your area you may want to look at individuals who are in landscaper groups on Facebook within a 15-mile radius of where your home or office is located.
What’s even more exciting is that you can use the Facebook pixel to target people who have visited your website or Facebook business page. The Facebook pixel is an analytics tool that allows you to measure the effectiveness of your advertising by understanding the actions people take on your website.
The pixel will help track the number of people who have clicked on your ad, website, or landing page which in turn can be used to retarget those individuals. The pixel is a valuable tool and you’ll want to understand how to use it effectively. To learn more check out this tutorial on how it is used and set up.
3. Ad Placement
When choosing your campaign objective and audience, Facebook will automatically optimize your ad based on those choices. The last choice in creating a Facebook Ad is where you want to show your ad.
When doing so it is important to understand where the majority of users spend their time. 98% of active users access the platform through a mobile device. As a best practice when advertising on Facebook, optimize for mobile devices. However, Facebook gives you the choice between mobile, desktop, or both.
The reason this is an important decision is that your ad can look different depending on the device you choose (desktop or mobile) and the place you choose to show it (e.g., Facebook Newsfeed, Instagram feed, Facebook videos or right column, Instagram Stories, etc. – the list goes on)
Don’t be overwhelmed with all of the decisions! Ultimately, you can choose as many or as little as you want. Either way, Facebook will optimize your ad for the placements you select.
So take some time to think about where you want to place your ad and what is appropriate for your potential clients. If you are on a low budget it can be difficult for Facebook to allocate the money evenly across all areas. It may be beneficial to choose a hand full to test out first. However, if you want to choose all placements it can be a great way of understanding where your customer is viewing your ad the most.
When it comes to creating a budget for your Facebook ads, it’s pretty straightforward. You have two options to choose from.
- Daily Budget: How much are you willing to spend per day?
- Lifetime Budget: The fixed amount you are willing to spend on an entire campaign
With either choice, Facebook will not go above the budgeted amount. When setting a daily budget there tends to be more flexibility as your budget won’t be spent evenly across the life of your campaign. This happens because there are times throughout the day or week that will be better for connecting with your audience than others. This allows Facebook to deliver your ads and spend your budget as efficiently as possible.
As for lifetime budget, Facebook will try to spend your money evenly across your ad’s life and never go over the set amount. However, there is no guarantee that the same amount will be spent every day because Facebook may be able to get you better results on a certain day.
5. Ad Copy and Content
Once you choose your objective, audience, budget, and placement it is time to write you ad copy. A Facebook ad is made up of several parts.
- Post Text (Body Text)
- Call-To-Action Button
It is important to get creative with the ad copy and graphic to set you apart from your competition and grab the client’s attention.
A great rule when writing effective ad copy is to target your audience’s pain points and address how your service may be able to solve that problem. Ad copy is the easiest thing to tweak when you see your ad is not performing, so if you are not getting the results you want, test some new copy and compare.
Some key takeaways when it comes to ad copy and graphics are to be creative and authentic. People respond better to brands that they can relate and identify with, so find some key reasons your customers might relate with you. For more ad copy tips go check out Facebook’s ad copy cheat sheet!
6. Tracking Ad Performance
Once you have your ad set up and it’s ready to go, it’s important to let it run for at least 3-4 days. This ensures that Facebook’s algorithm has fully optimized your ad and you have enough data to make the necessary adjustments.
The metrics you want to focus on are going to depend on what your campaign objective may be. However, there are some key metrics you should pay attention to no matter the objective.
- Engagement: How your audience interacts with the ad
- Reach: Measures how many people see your ads across Facebook.
- Impressions: Impressions tell you how many times an ad was seen. The key difference is that multiple views by the same person count toward impressions but not toward reach.
- Clicks: Are people clicking on your call to action, your Facebook page, or other links on the ad?
- Click-Through Rate (CTR): Of the people who viewed your ad how many people clicked your ad through the landing page
- Cost Per Action (CPA) and Cost Per Click (CPC): How much does each click or other actions cost you in ad spend?
PPC marketing can have a significant impact on your business whether you use Facebook or Google to market your insurance business. It’s important to stay persistent and consistent when running and creating ads. Many businesses start PPC marketing but give up quickly because both their expectations and results are not what they hoped for. Don’t be afraid to test your ads (text, call-to-action, graphics, etc.) to figure out what works best for your business.
For an insurance agent digital platforms, like Google and Facebook, are essential tools designed to help you grow your business. Using these platforms and understanding the basics can set you apart as well as bring in a wealth of opportunity that you may not have had before.