search marketing

All posts tagged search marketing

Webinar: Which Type of Google Ad is Right for Your Tourism Business?

by Kelly Kubrick on October 23, 2019

Upcoming Webinar: November 7th, 2019 at 2PM EST

Please join me, Kelly Kubrick, online at for a one-hour webinar:

Webinar title: Which Type of Google Ad is Right for Your Tourism Business?

Search vs Shopping vs Display & Video/YouTube?

In this session Kelly Kubrick will talk about the different types of Google Ads and help you determine which ones are right for your tourism business. She will give tips, techniques, tactics that will improve your performance in each. During this session, Kelly will ensure attendees

  • Understand the differences between the various types of Google Ads;
  • Compare the characteristics of each to determine how best your business can leverage them;
  • Learn how to plan budgets, typical costs, typical returns and expected results to determine which Google Ad is right for your business; and
  • Ensure you know how best to succeed at this challenging, but proven advertising network.

If you are interested in learning more about Google advertising, contact Online Authority today.

read more
Kelly KubrickWebinar: Which Type of Google Ad is Right for Your Tourism Business?

Dispel complexity with educational content using Google paid search advertising

by Kelly Kubrick on April 30, 2019

Campaign Objectives

The Canadian Commercial Corporation (CCC) wanted to promote the availability of a new ebook developed to explain its government-to-government (G2G) offering to Canadian manufacturers.

The Plan

In advance of the paid traffic campaign, CCC developed landing pages in English and French, containing an offer to download the ebook in exchange for providing contact information.

Where Digital Fit

In addition to its regular organic social media and email newsletters, CCC approved a paid search media buy on Google Ads. Online Authority was tasked with advising the internal team with how to plan the campaign, including how to undertake keyword research and how to structure its Ad Groups.

Online Authority provided advisory services to the CCC team on creative – copy and image treatments, and recommended keyword bid adjustments after an initial period in market.

ebook search ads english and french


Within days of launch, significant insights into the strongest keywords – as well as those worth excluding as negative keywords – were identified for CCC providing critical insights into the opportunities available to CCC’s business development efforts going forward.

If you are interested in learning more about paid search advertising, contact Online Authority today.

read more
Kelly KubrickDispel complexity with educational content using Google paid search advertising

Increase awareness of funding availability with Google search advertising

by Kelly Kubrick on April 10, 2019

Campaign Objectives

The Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) wanted to increase the number of municipal capital project funding applications initiated in its lead generation process.

The Plan:

In advance of the paid traffic campaign, FCM developed landing pages in English and French containing links to supporting documentation describing the funding application process.

Where digital fit:

In addition to its regular organic social media and email newsletters, FCM approved a paid search media buy on Google Ads. Online Authority was tasked with advising the internal team with how to plan the campaign, including how to undertake keyword research and how to structure its Ad Groups.

Online Authority provided advisory services to the FCM team on creative – copy and image treatments – including adjustments after an initial test period in market.

FCM Signature Projects Search Ad in English


The campaign launched ran for the duration of the funding season and additional tests were planned.

We can help

If you are interested in learning more about launching your Google paid Search campaign, contact Online Authority today.

read more
Kelly KubrickIncrease awareness of funding availability with Google search advertising

Drive product sales with Google Shopping advertising

by Kelly Kubrick on February 2, 2019

Campaign Objectives, a Canadian online retailer, wanted to know if Google Search advertising could outperform Google Shopping in terms of product sales conversions.

Google Shopping vs Google Paid Search

Google Shopping allows retailers to run advertising campaigns to promote their product inventory. It all starts with the retailer sending, automatically, its product details to Google via Google’s Merchant Center offering. Once the product information has been uploaded, the retailer / merchant can create a Shopping campaign in Google Ads to display its wares.

Shopping ads placements are different from traditional text-only search ads, as they include a photo of the product, product title, price, store name, and more.

“Instead of keywords, Shopping ads use the product attributes you defined in your Merchant Center data feed to show your ads on relevant searches.” Source: Google

The Plan: used a free application to automatically send its product data feed — stored in its ecommerce platform — to Google Merchant Center. From there, the Google Shopping campaign was created in Google Ads. Nearly all of the content for the ads is provided automatically through the data feed.

Here are screenshots showing an example of the creative for Google Shopping ad for Women’s underwear vs a traditional text-only search Google Paid Search ad vs another Google Shopping ad for Men’s underwear:

Example Creative Google Shopping vs Google Paid Search


For launch, Online Authority worked with to customize its Google Shopping ads to organize product groups using Custom Labels, reflective of their product collections.

Over several months, MyLiberty tested the performance of its Shopping campaign vs its Search campaign to see which drove the most conversions.


The Google Shopping Campaign delivered 3x the conversions of Search. Wow!

Armed with this critical data, re-allocated its budget accordingly and continues to devote a significantly higher proportion of its media spend to Shopping Ads versus other Google placements.

We can help

If you are a retailer with an ecommerce website and interested in learning more about Google Shopping advertising, contact Online Authority today.

read more
Kelly KubrickDrive product sales with Google Shopping advertising

Ottawa Web and Social Media Events

by Kelly Kubrick on May 13, 2011

Ottawa’s marketing community continues to impress me with its increasingly rich offering of web and social media related events. I’m sure I’ve missed several, but the month is flying by me and I wanted to get these one published:

If I’ve missed any, comment away, and I’ll be sure to add it to the information.

Hope to see all of you at one or more of these events!


read more
Kelly KubrickOttawa Web and Social Media Events

Ottawa’s jam-packed June

by Kelly Kubrick on June 23, 2010

I’m not sure if it was intentional or not – trying to beat a pre-summer vacation frenzy? – but this past month, Ottawa has been jam-packed with with web-related events. Which is, of course, excellent news for our fair city. Our web-ian community grows!

A quick round up of those I was able to catch:

  • GovCamp Ottawa, our local version of GovCamp Canada: “an open environment for conversation about the role of municipal, provincial and federal governments in cultivating the growth and prosperity of Canada’s vibrant communities…”. My first ‘un-conference’, and an intriguing experience. After hearing from a kick-off panel, the audience created the agenda on the spot. I joined a debate about how valuable (or not) subject matter experts are in an open government model, a discussion about inter-jurisdictional (federal, provincial and municipal) applications and a session about how to measure the impact of open government data using examples and success stories. Overall though, my favourite part was the live Twitter feed during the panel itself; highly amusing to be part of a top-trending topic on Twitter for a day…
  • “Winning the War on Google” featuring Rebecca Lieb, presented by the nascent Ottawa Web Marketing Rebecca has an impressive search pedigree and covered a lot of the fundamentals of search. Unfortunately, the most interesting material – the future of search – came at the end with little time left. She touched on implications of universal search e.g. the blending of search results – organic, news, images, video, social, etc. to illustrate why it’s – truly – no longer about rankings. Also, intriguing stats from comScore: “In early 2008, 17 percent of searches contained some type of blended result. In late 2008, it was 31 percent of all search results.” Look out marketers!
  • “Social Media Marketing Experts Reveal All” with panelists Scott Lake from SWIX, Erin Blaskie, Lifestreamer (my new favourite word – see BabyCenter’s research segmenting social moms) and Michele Bedford-Thistle from Microsoft, presented by OCRI‘s, Zone5ive technology marketing speaker series. Each panelist had an extremely different take on social and how they’ve incorporated it into their professional selves and businesses. Finally – concrete evidence about why organizations don’t need to panic about the ‘right’ way to ‘do’ social.

There were still other events I was not able to attend, including:

  • “Wikibrands – Reinventing Your Business in A Customer Controlled Marketplace”, featuring Sean Moffit and presented by SMB Ottawa (Social Media Breakfast Ottawa). For reasons that I’m unclear about, there’s no reference to the event on the SMB Ottawa web page,  but you can find the presentation on slideshare. Perhaps they are pure-Twitterists?
  • MARCOM 2010 – “professional development and educational forum for public and not-for-profit marketers and communicators”
  • Your Facebook Business Account – Turn “Fans” into Customers Session 3 of Using Social Media to Drive Business featuring Erin Blaskie, presented by the Ottawa Chamber of Commerce. Fortunately for me, Erin posted the presentation on slideshare.

If you were able to attend any of these, comment away – I’d be curious to hear what you learned at each.

And finally, although it not exactly an event, there is a deadline worth noting – CMA Ottawa is touting the fact that the entry deadline for the 2010 Canadian Marketing Associations Awards is June 24th, 2010.

Go Ottawa!

read more
Kelly KubrickOttawa’s jam-packed June

Is Your Search Marketing Missing In Action?

by Kelly Kubrick on April 16, 2010

Many thanks to CMA Ottawa, the Ottawa chapter of the Canadian Marketing Association, for inviting me to speak at their upcoming luncheon on April 27th, 2010.

I’m especially pleased about the about the topic I get to tackle – search engine marketing. Back in December 2008, I was fascinated to read a study describing how business owners find search campaigns more scary than filing taxes. Since then, I’ve concluded that this might indeed be the case – which is not a good thing.

Search marketing may be the great leveler and I don’t like the idea of business owners shying away from it. Instead, I’d be much happier if they at least understood enough about the tactic to decide if it should be included in their marketing mix or not.

My hope is to demystify search marketing and in particular, talk about:

  • Measuring visibility instead of worrying about rankings
  • Why it’s not really about your home page anymore
  • How you can leverage your own subject matter expertise

I’ve just returned from eMetrics Marketing Optimization Summit in Toronto and Canada’s Search Marketing Expo, SMX Toronto, and my head is brimming with search ideas and issues; I’m really going to have to rein myself in…

I hope to see you on April 27th!

Event details:

When:    Tuesday April 27th, 2010, from 11:45 a.m. to 2:15 p.m.
Where:    Hampton Inn and Conference Centre, 100 Coventry Rd, Ottawa
Cost:    $40.00 for CMA members, $55.00 for non-members

Register through CMA Ottawa

read more
Kelly KubrickIs Your Search Marketing Missing In Action?

Looming Deadline for SMX Session Pitches

by Kelly Kubrick on December 14, 2009

Toronto’s April 2010 Search Marketing Expo (SMX Toronto) session pitch deadline is December 15th, 2009. For anyone new to this conference, SMX Toronto runs alongside eMetrics Marketing Optimization Summit.

If you or an organization you work with would like to talk about a search (search engine optimization, marketing, analytics and onsite search) project you’ve completed of late, the conference organizers would love to hear from you:

Read about planned session tracks and submit your pitch

read more
Kelly KubrickLooming Deadline for SMX Session Pitches

Internet Marketing Tips 10 – 20

by Kelly Kubrick on August 31, 2007

By Kelly Cook – first distributed by The Empowerment Network from Women Moving Forward, February 2004

Previous: Internet Marketing Tips 1 to 10

10. To make sure your website is visible in search engines results, you must ‘optimize’ the copy and code of your website for two different yet simultaneous audiences. The first audience is humans reading your web pages, and the second is search engine and directory robots who ‘index’ your web pages in order to include them in the search results. Each audience has different requirements, yet both types of copy must complement the other.

  • When writing the site copy for your human audience, ask some trusted friends or colleagues to critique your copy using the perspective of a website visitor typical of your target market. Is the copy user-centric versus organization-centric? Does it answer all the questions the user might have? As quickly as possible?

11. As stated in Tip #10, to make sure your website is visible in search engines results, you must ‘optimize’ the copy and code of your website for two different yet simultaneous audiences. The second audience are the search engine and directory robots who ‘index’ your web pages in order to include them in the search results. You must make your website is “search engine friendly” by providing the robots with certain pieces of information including a “TITLE” tag, a “Description” meta tag and a “Keyword” meta tag. The TITLE tag is critical – it is what search engines display when they list your page in the results for a keyword search.

  • When writing your Title tag (one per unique web page in your site) be specific about the content of the page but limit it to no more than 60 characters including commas and spaces. Do not use “Company Name” as the only copy in your TITLE tag as this tends to clutter search results. An example of an Title for a ecommerce vendor is:

<title>Shopping Cart Software by MonsterCommerce – Ecommerce Solutions</title>

12. Search engines use the Description META tag as the summary for your site when listed in search results. It is what tells a real person whether or not your site is relevant to their search. Without this tag, a search engine may describe your site for you by displaying the first hundred or so characters from the top of your page, which may not make sense to the reader.

  • The Description tag should not exceed 250 characters in length including spaces and commas, with the most important content placed at the beginning. An example of a Description META tag for a Veterinary Association is:

<META name=”description” content=”About animal health, safety; pet loss, buying a pet. Information on veterinarians.”>

13. Unlike the TITLE and Description tags, the Keyword META tag is intended solely for search engine robots, providing them with a list of keywords and phrases reflective of the subject and intended audience of your site.

  • The Keyword tag should not exceed 250 characters in length including spaces and commas (or approximately 15 words), with the most important content placed at the beginning. An example of a Keyword META tag for a furniture store is:

<meta NAME=”keywords” CONTENT=”furniture, furniture stores, furniture store, discount, bedroom, baby, kids, living room furniture, outdoor furniture”

14. Now that you’ve finished your planning phase, the second phase in launching a website is design. The secret to limiting the number of hours you need to spend on design fees is to do the following:

  • Hire a website designer and provide him or her with your site map and site copy. Ask for three different mock-ups of your web site homepage to help you decide what you like / dislike about each design. As the mock-ups do not need to be functional web pages, the designer can limit the number of hours needed to provide you with a final version that combines the ‘best of’ elements of the three original mock-ups.

15. The third phase in launching a website is “production”. This is when the HTML code is written, or when your web pages are actually ‘built’. To complete this step:

  • Hire a website producer and provide him / her with the site map and the site copy from Tip #6, the homepage design from Tip #7 and for a price to build the site based on that planning material. Once you agree on the price, the producer will begin building and then ask you to test the site. Once you approve the site, it can go live!

16. The fourth step in launching a website is all about you – marketing! Your job is to build awareness of the site:

  • Print your URL on all marketing material (business cards, invoices, envelopes, trucks, hats, etc). List all the places you currently print your phone number and add the URL – ideally in a larger font than the phone number itself.

17. As discussed in Tip #16, build awareness of your web site via search engine listings. Due to the fact that Google provides search results for its own search engine as well as several other search engines (e.g. AOL Search, Netscape Search) it hold 75% – 80% market share*. Thus, if your website is to going to be found by users, you’ve got to make sure it’s listed prominently in Google under your company name and under your product or service category – for example both “Home Hardware” and “hardware store”.

  • Submit your website to Google

*Source: ”7 Secrets to High Google Rankings”, Stephen Spencer, Netconcepts, February 2004

18. One of the ways that Google improves your ranking is based on “importance”, which is defined by the number, size and relevance of content of websites which link to your website.

  • To encourage sites to link to you, create a links page where you can offer a reciprocal link to them.

19. Once the site is launched, take the time to assess the effectiveness of your website by reviewing your “usage statistics” or “traffic” reports on a monthly basis. These reports are available through your hosting provider at no extra cost. Among other things, the reports can tell you how many visitors you’ve had over what time period, where they’re coming from and other critical marketing information.

  • Contact your hosting provider and ask them how to access your website traffic reports. Review them on a monthly basis and make decisions about how to improve the site based on that information.

20. The most important statistic to review in your website traffic reports is the “visitor” or “session” metric – not “hits”! Hits simply count the number of elements on any given web page (such as the number of graphics), not the number of visitors to the page. So – if you have five graphics on a page, you’ll get five hits for each visitor. Hits are a very inflated number and don’t reflect the actual usage levels of your site.

  • Review your traffic reports and focus on visitor or session trends (not absolute numbers). Relative to your target market size, are your website visitor numbers increasing, decreasing or staying flat, over what time period?
read more
Kelly KubrickInternet Marketing Tips 10 – 20

Twenty Internet Marketing Tips

by Kelly Kubrick on August 31, 2007

By Kelly Cook – first distributed by The Empowerment Network from Women Moving Forward, February 2004

1. Not having a website today is like trying to do business with an unlisted phone number – a bad idea all around. Your customers are online and looking for you! Without a website you make your competitors lives easier and you may begin to lose credibility with clients, employees, the media and possibly your suppliers or vendors.

  • Establish an opinion about the importance of the Internet in your marketing strategy. Have you ever criticized a company business for not having a website? What did you think of them when you couldn’t find them online? Has your company ever been criticized for not having a website?

2. To help you establish an opinion about the importance of the Internet, here are two reasons why your company should market itself on the Internet: 1) Statistics Canada research discovered that only 24% of small businesses in Canada have a website (compared to 74% of large businesses) and 2) 72% (17 million) of Canadian adults are online and 91% of them are online looking for product information.*

  • Decide if you want to be one of the 76% of small businesses without a website. If so, don’t you think you might be missing a significant opportunity to promote yourself to those segments of your target market that are online? You must establish a point of view and then act!

*Source: “Multi-Country Report”, comScore Media Metrix Canada, March 2003, “Canadian Netizens”, NFO CFgroup, January 2003

3. An Internet marketing strategy is most effective when it is integrated with your overall marketing strategy. In order to do that, your overall marketing strategy must be able to answer some critical questions:

  • What is the total size (in units / dollars) of your target market (e.g. Ottawa vs. Ontario vs. Canada vs. North America vs. the world?)? What are its segments (e.g. Women? Men? Professionals? Students? Etc.). How are you positioned against competitors (are you better? faster? less expensive?).

4. A critical part of your marketing strategy involves setting an annual marketing budget. Many companies set their annual marketing budget based on a percentage of revenues (e.g. 5%).

  • Identify all of your marketing expenses (business cards, direct mail, sponsorships, etc.) and note how much you are currently spending on each item (in dollars and as a percentage of the total budget). Are you within the limits of your budget? Or do you have some room to experiment with alternate forms of marketing?

5. To integrate the Internet into your marketing strategy, think about the Internet is as a relative (not absolute) marketing expense – it’s not a technology problem! Of your total marketing budget (established in Tip #4)…

  • Decide how much you’d be willing to test on the Internet: 1% of the total budget? 5% of the total budget? The result will tell you how much money you have available to launch, promote and maintain a website.

6. Expect to spend 50% of your website launch costs on technology related expenses (domain registry, monthly hosting fees and hiring someone to ‘build’ your web pages). Expect to spend 20% of your costs on design, another 20% on planning and 10% on marketing.

  • Take the Internet budget you established in Tip #5 and list each individual Internet expense you anticipate. This will tell you how much you can afford to spend in Year 1 of the website (including launch and maintenance costs). Are you over, under or even with your forecasted Internet budget?

7. When launching a website, there are four distinct phases: 1) planning, 2) design, 3) production and 4) marketing. The best way to stay on budget and on schedule is to approach the phases in that exact order. Begin with planning:

  • Review your competition online, establish a three-year budget, draw a site map and write all the copy for your site. If you complete these steps before you think about design, you’ll save yourself time and money during the later phases.

8. The first and most critical step in writing website copy is to understand how your audience perceives your product, service or organization. Force yourself to think of terms they might use (versus those you would like to be perceived as). For example, you might like to think you sell “pre-owned vehicles”, but few users search on that term. Instead, they search for “used cars”. Adjust your site copy accordingly based on search term research.

  • Identify the terms or phrases your target audience inputs into search engines when looking for your company website, product or service category by using tools such as the Search Term Suggestion Tool at or at

9. The simplest approach is to writing your website copy on a page-by-page basis. Best practices for websites state that a minimum of five pages are needed to answer most users’ questions: Home page, Clients / Customers, Products / Services, Contact Us, About Us. Assume a minimum of 250 words of body copy are needed for each web page in your site.

  • Write the copy in the order that is most important to the user – not your organization. To maintain this perspective write the Clients / Customers page first, leaving “About Us” until the very end.

Next: Internet Marketing Tips 10 – 20

read more
Kelly KubrickTwenty Internet Marketing Tips