The PPC Snobs Playbook

Module 4.2: Content

Content refers to the creatives (headlines, descriptions, images, videos) that highlight your business (which includes ads). It's important to develop a variety of creatives assets. Test new channels, mediums and formats.

Table of Contents

A. Building a Content Matrix

Planning Your Content Strategy

Ideation for your content topics doesn’t have to be strenuous exercise. The best content (I believe) is built around your organizational mission, service/product offering, industry and market, stakeholders and customer funnel.

If you remembered our conversation about funnels from Module 2.1, then the following questions should make plenty of sense as you plan your content strategy:

What kind of content would be useful to stakeholders as they research solutions? What kind of content will help our stakeholders better understand the nature of our business and services?

It’s often useful to start with your website sitemap:

  • Home – How do we ensure that we’re guiding our stakeholders appropriately from the first interaction?
  • About – What type of content helps our stakeholders better understand who we are?
  • Services – What type of content better informs our stakeholders about what we do?
  • Portfolio – What type of content illustrates our professionalism and results?
  • Pricing – What types of content demonstrates the value of services and why we charge our rates?
  • Contact – How can stakeholders best get in touch with us?
  • Blog – How can we educate our stakeholders about changes and trends in our industry and market?

Using Topic Clusters

The content for my modules were designed using the pillar and cluster approach recommended by HubSpot.

I started with my 4 main pillars: Startup, Discover, Setup & Optimize. Then I wrote 4-5 cluster pieces to support each of those key topics.

If you look through my sitemap, it’s easy to see the logic and storytelling I/m trying to achieve when you look at my overall website structure. 

I wanted my content to serve several purposes:

  • As a general overview of the many moving parts in an PPC engine. I think that just looking through the navigation menu does a good job of addressing the major processes.
  • As a service guide to what each of those moving parts consists of. Each sub-module offers an in-depth explanation of how a specific process functions and its contribution to the overall PPC engine.
  • As an education tool to help readers better under the nature and value of PPC. I made an extra effort to emphasis outcomes and impact.
  • As a credibility tool, by showcasing the breadth and depth of my PPC knowledge. I’m careful to reference relevant and credible sources and technology.
  • As an empowerment tool, by offering readers activities and resources. My advisors say that I give away too much of the sauce for free.
  • As a lead generation tool. Hopefully I’ve built enough credibility with my readers that they seek me out for services.

Designing a Content Template

My approach to content structure isn’t very complex either. I literally take an ABC123 approach using a standard template. 

(If you’re looking for more ways to structure your content, consider reading this blog post template guide from Ahrefs).

Consider the outline for this module 4.2: Content. You can see how the sub-themes and details were filled in with elements from my research, content matrix and cluster design. 

Every theme addresses the core page topic, and every detail adds support to its overlying theme. 

Even my details can be eventually broken into their own sub-themes and topics depending on how much depth and breadth I’m willing to add.

4.2. Content 

  1. Theme 1 – Building a Content Matrix
    1. Detail #1 – Planning a Your Content Strategy
    2. Detail #2 – Using Topic Clusters
    3. Detail #2 – Designing a Content Template
  2. Theme 2 – Writing Headlines & Descriptions
    1. Exercise #1 – Page Titles & Meta Descriptions
    2. Exercise #2 – Responsive Search Ads
  3. Theme 3 – Developing Creative Assets
    1. Essentials #1 – Static Media – Images, Case Studies, Coupons, Infographics
    2. Essentials #2 – Rich Media – Videos, Podcasts, Games, Calculators

B. Writing Headlines & Descriptions

Page Titles, H1s & Meta Descriptions

It’s good practice to develop your content strategy, matrix and template with SEO in mind.

Every webpage should have a title (60 characters), an H1 tag (80 characters), and a meta description (160 characters). Not only are these important for SEO, we can also repurpose these for later. Headlines and descriptions serve as the foundation for most online channels.

In Module 2.1: Research, we spoke about how to gather critical insights about our business, industry and audiences. The research collected at this stage should provide more than enough fuel to power our content engine.

Tips for Writing Page Titles:

  1. Include at least 1 of your keywords.
  2. We should understand what the page is about in 60 characters or less.
  3. Use Standard Title Capitalization.
  4. Numbers in headlines work really well (4 tips for…, the 2023 guide to…)
  5. Use the active voice instead of the passive (you should be watching this vs. watch this).

Tips for Writing H1s & Meta Descriptions:

  1. The same rules for writing page titles mostly apply here. 
  2. Give some context to what the page is about. Try to include 2-3 important keywords this time.
  3. Address your audience directly. What might they care about as it relates to what you’re describing?
  4. Keep the character count at around 70-90 for H1s and 160 for meta descriptions.
  5. End with a call to action (CTA): learn, read, download, etc…

Responsive Search Ads

Ads on most PPC platforms start with headlines, descriptions, and/or images. 

Responsive Search Ads (RSAs) are a creative format used by Google & Microsoft Ads that ask for 15 headlines (30 characters each) and 4 descriptions (90 characters each).

RSAs are good practice for writing about your services and products in a variety of ways. The headlines and descriptions that you develop here can be also used across multiple platforms.

Think about how headlines and descriptions can promote your unique selling points, results, and outcomes.

Here’s some advice when writing your ads:

  1. Use headlines that include your service/product keyword.
  2. Diversify your headlines. Are there various names for your services/products.
  3. Leverage specific call-to-actions. (i.e. See Our Pricing, Request a Quote)
  4. Highlight your unique selling points.
  5. Good ads sell services. Great ads sell solutions. The best ads sell outcomes.

C. Developing Creative Assets

Invest in high quality static and rich media. They will more than pay their return on investment. Think of them like tattoos. Cheap, poor-quality ones last forever and they don’t look good.

Reaching your audiences through different platforms, channels and mediums is like speaking different languages. 

What type of creative asset (i.e. case study, video, webinar, mortgage calculator, pricing guide, demo video) can help best communicate with our stakeholders?

People use niche platforms for a reason. The tone and feel is more in-tune with what that audience prefers from a digital experience.

PPC can help reach a global audience of millions, potentially billions of people. Not everyone will respond to your message the same way. Not every platform will require the same approach.

So, experiment with a variety of mediums: video, podcast, song, AR/VR, etc… Everyone processes information differently. 

Essential #1 - Images

Images that highlight your brand, product and services are essential. Your logo should be first creative asset investment.

Canva is a free design tool where you can develop amazing visual content for your website and ad channel.

You can also grab free stock images from websites like Pexels and Unsplash.

Essential #2 - Videos

Videos are an absolute must in 2023. You can create a high-quality, whiteboard video. using Doodly that highlight your brand’s mission and objectives.

The PPC Snobs Playbook

Module 4: Optimize

Launch your PPC rocketship to the stars!

Module 4.1: Targeting

Module 4.3: Bidding

Module 4.4: Sales