When you decide to engage in pay-per-click marketing, you will need to decide what terms you are going to bid on as part of the process. In fact, selecting the terms you will bid is one of the most important pieces of the puzzle. If you bid the right terms, you can put your product or service in front of your ideal target market day after day.
Of course, while you are working on your PPC advertising plan, there is a good chance that your competition will be working on their plan, as well. And, it’s entirely possible that your competition will decide to bid on your brand’s terms. That’s right – there is nothing stopping them from showing up at the top of the page when a searcher is actually looking for you. As long as they are willing to pay the price, they can grab a portion of what would otherwise be your traffic.
Are You Out of Luck?
It would be easy to throw up your hands and just assume there is nothing that you can do in this situation. After all, you don’t control the bids, so you can’t exactly decide which terms are approved in another business’s Bing Ads or Google Ads PPC campaign. With that said, there are a few ways you can take action. Let’s work through four simple but (hopefully) effective ideas.
#1 – Ask Nicely
In business, it is usually assumed that the competition will stop at nothing to win. That is true in some cases – but not in every case. Sometimes, if you simply ask nicely for another business to take action, they may respond in a positive manner. So, a good starting point in this process is simply to send an email and ask the other business to cease bidding on your brand terms.
Is this guaranteed to work? Of course not. There is a very good chance it won’t work. However, it only takes a few minutes to craft an email, and it costs nothing to send. If it does happen that the other company is receptive and decides to remove their bids on terms related to your brand name, you’ll have solved the issue without having to go any farther.
#2 – Win the Battle
This is roughly the opposite approach as the one listed above. By starting to bid on your brand’s terms, you should be able to secure the top position in relatively short order. The key here is to establish a strong quality score for your ads – either 9 or 10 – so you can rank at the top of the page even with a modest bid. You shouldn’t have to pay much for these clicks, since they are perfectly relevant to your website, and you should be able to move your competition down the page.
#3 – Turn the Tables
Our next option is also going to have you heading into direct competition with the other company in question. This time, instead of bidding on your own terms in Bing or Google Ads, you are going to actually bid on their terms. There are a number of ways this could turn out in the end. If it works out well, the competition will take down their ads on your terms, hoping you will do the same. Of course, if both of you continue to bid on the terms of each business, it’s likely that costs-per-click will rise and both sides will lose in the long run.
#4 – Defend Yourself on Trademark Grounds
Is your brand trademarked? If so, you may be able to get the competition to stop bidding on your protected terms through the use of a trademark complaint. You can submit this complaint directly to Google. With any luck, the ads will then be disapproved, and you will have solved the matter effectively. Of course, this is only going to be a viable option if you do have a trademark in place to protect the brand terms for your business.
In a perfect world, you would be able to resolve this matter with a friendly email. This is not a perfect world, however, so that first option might not work. If you need to go farther, we hope one of the other three methods will bring you a quick and satisfactory resolution. With this issue settled, you can get back to the task of running your business on a day to day basis.