PPC Snobs

Lesson 1: Models

Most websites on the internet will try to sell you services, sell you products, or sell your attention to the highest bidder.

Table of Contents

Building a better society starts with a fundamental understanding of the types of business models that power the internet. How do we produce services driven by win-win relationships, promote products that continue to add value to our lives, and offer subscriptions that save us time to concentrate on what matters most?

By the end of this lesson, you should understand:

  • Objective #1 – What is PPC, ESD & GCE?
  • Objective #2 – The Most Popular Online Business Models

1. Leads

Service-focused organizations (finance, legal, repairs, etc..) are usually looking for leads, hence the name ‘lead generation‘.  Think of businesses that sell services or software.

I personally enjoy lead generation because much of the work requires breaking the decision making process down into stages that can be influenced. It’s a great way to think about how we can impact others across some of most important touchpoints in their lives. It also forces us to empathize with our stakeholders through considering their perspectives and needs.

The usual lead gen funnel: 1. Person clicks ad > 2. person gives information in return for something valuable (quote, case study, guide, etc…) > 4. person qualifies as a lead and starts the sales process > lead becomes an opportunity (once a value has been assigned and commitment confirmed) > opportunity becomes a customer.

There’s a deeper focus focus on lead-to-sale KPIs as they relate to revenue and business outcomes: cost per lead (CPL), conversion and close rates (CVR), cost per acquisition (CPA), life time value (LTV) and return on investment (ROI). 

Lead gen also requires an understanding of how to target and influence stages of the marketing funnel, knowledge of how to create and capture demand through various marketing channels and creative assets, and at least a basic technical grasp of the tracking and operational softwares that enable lead generation specific processes.

2. Transactions

I also work with businesses that sell products (and sometimes virtual products, like NFTs).  Ecommerce PPC requires a  very different set of tactics and skills than lead gen. There needs to be a deeper understanding of the technical systems and processes that support eCommerce PPC, such as setting up merchant feeds and integrating shopping engines with the rest of your tech stack. 

Think of what it takes to run a physical store; things such as cash register, shelves, employees, and furniture. Think about the last time you had a bad shopping experience, long wait, bad service, cash only, confusing layout, whatever. 

Now imagine having to deal with the digital equivalent of that shopping experience in an Ecommerce store (confusing checkout, limited payment methods, slow shipping, etc…). 

Ecommerce should strive to simulate a great physical shopping experience. Don’t underestimate the impact that great content, positive reviews and free shipping has on the user experience. Success is heavily driven by the user experience, shopping experience, payment friction, order fulfillment, and customer support. 

3. Users

The third (and most powerful) model is User Acquisition. Think of subscription models like Netflix, Amazon Prime, Apple Music or YouTube Premium. Cloud software and apps, like Dropbox, Microsoft or Google Workspace. Content networks, such as social networks and news websites. 

For user acquisition, there’s often an additional focus on average revenue per user (ARPU), cost per acquisition (CPA), lifetime value (LTV), and churn rate. The more users that are repeatedly using these platforms, the more money these platforms can make, and usually in multiple ways. 

The ability to generate a large following or influence a powerful niche following (for example, associations that cater to doctors, lawyers, or CEOs) is what drives brands to endorse or sponsor (buy advertising space) from an influencer. 

Even creators, like musicians and actors, essentially fall under the scope of user (fan) acquisition. The capacity to properly monetize that engaged following is what separates a paid artist from a broke one.The PPC professional, no matter the business model, needs to develop the skills to effectively target and convert high value stakeholders for their organization.

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