Outsourcing your search engine marketing is how you will blow through your numbers and cut your expenses. SEM will be what saves you and why we all still have jobs in three years. SEM, the bane of the advertising business, the glorified version of classified ads, the medium that has removed creativity from advertising and replaced it with this –
-- is going to keep you and your department employed.
It is your life-raft in an economy that wants to chew you up and spit you out. Why? Because SEM is precision-driven ROI: Money goes in, money comes out. In a down economy, the more direct forms of advertising are the last to get cut.
If you believe differently, imagine a world where all we have are banners, rich media, microsites, social media, and mobile. This would greatly decrease the perception that our medium is useful for business. SEM is what gives the entire internet advertising industry credibility. Every other online ad format is along for the ride.
First of all, stop patting yourself on the back with how great your SEM program is. By the time a consumer types in a keyword, they've already decided what they're looking for. They see a television commercial, a print ad, billboard, and coffee sleeve, all with your company logo, then go online and type something into Google to find it. Was SEM the root cause of the conversion? Of course not, but you are sure going to take credit for it.
Let that sink in. You're just not as good as you think you are, and more importantly, the rest of the formats online are just not as effective as we need. SEM is what gives most companies the freedom to experiment with other media online.
SEM is important to the entire online ad industry, and staffing -- how you staff, what staff you have, and what their key competencies are -- is the key determiner for outsourcing. If are not already outsourcing your SEM program, then you may believe:
A) You don't need to because you know your business better than everyone else (a routinely false assumption).
B) You are really behind the curve (sadly common).
C) Outsourcing would cut the power base of whoever is in charge of SEM at your company (strangely common).
There are several reasons why should almost always outsource SEM or "insource" the technology for it.
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