Like every other kid growing up, I loved sprinklers in the summer.  My dad would set up a sprinkler to water the lawn and that was enough entertainment for me and my friends for several hours.

One of the fun tricks, or pranks, I remember was to put a kink in the hose so that the water couldn’t flow to the sprinkler.  Then when one of our unsuspecting friends got close to inspect the sprinkler, I’d release the kink so all the water quickly shoots out.  I’m sure I wasn’t the only one who used to do that. :)

The reason for this trip down memory lane is because the concept of kinks in a hose is a perfect analogy for a poor performing Google AdWords campaign.  If you’re advertising and you’re not generating leads and sales, then you have a kink, or multiple kinks, in your campaign.  The good news is all you have to do is release those kinks, and the leads and sales will quickly shoot out like a sprinkler.

Let’s take a look at the most common kinks in a Google AdWords campaign and how to release them.

What Can Sprinklers Teach You About AdWords


Kink In Your Keyword Selection & Targeting

When I audit AdWords campaigns, this is one of the most common problems I see.  And unfortunately, there’s no way to compensate for this kink in your campaign.  If you’re not targeting the right keywords for your product or service, then you’re simply never going to generate leads and sales.

To check for this kink, you’ll need to run a Keyword Query report to see the exact searches that are triggering your ads.  If you’re using Broad match or Phrase match keywords, then you’ll be surprised to see all the various searches that not only trigger your ads, but that are also getting clicks.  That means you could be paying for completely irrelevant traffic, and unless you’re keeping a close eye on this report, then you didn’t even know it.

The solution to release this kink is to make sure you’re only targeting the keyword phrases that buyers would type into Google to find your product or service.  Then, on a consistent basis, run the Keyword Query report to identify and add negative keywords to your campaign.


Kink In Your Ad Copy

The symptom here is low click through rates on your ads.  Not only does this kink prevent sales because no one clicks on your ads, but it also drives down your AdWords quality score.  As your quality score drops, you’ll end up paying more per click and your ad position will drop as well.  This is like putting a kink in a hose and then over time the pressure causes the hose to burst.  Not a good situation.

To release this kink, you need to first make sure your ads match the keywords in your ad groups.  Often this means you need to restructure your campaign so that all of the ad groups contain only similar keyword phrases.  Only then is it possible to precisely match the ad copy to the keyword, which leads to higher click through rates.


Kink In Your Landing Page

Getting traffic to your website from AdWords is really only half the battle.  Unless you can deposit website traffic into your bank account, you’re going to need to measure sales after prospects click on your AdWords ads. :)

That’s why your landing page is so important.  The landing page is the webpage your prospect lands on after clicking your ad.  So this is the page that will determine whether your prospect clicks the Back button, or continues down your marketing funnel to the eventual sale.

A kink in your landing page means you’re generating relevant, qualified traffic from AdWords, but it’s simply not converting to sales.  Symptoms include high bounce rates and low conversion rates.

To release this kink, your landing page must meet the following basic criteria:

  • The copy on the page matches the ads and the keywords.  Often this means you’ll need multiple landing pages to ensure the copy is congruent.
  • The page loads fast.  Nobody has patience for slow loading websites, and you still have to pay for the ads even if the prospect clicked back before your page fully loaded up.
  • The page loads correctly on the devices your ads are targeting.  If your targeting mobile devices, then your landing page better be mobile optimized.  Otherwise, all those mobile ad clicks will be wasted.


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