ZATO has been around since 2011 (with a rebrand somewhere in there), and one of the most consistent things we have seen is that starting PPC business budgets have remained the same, while costs have risen (both platform costs and agency costs) making it more difficult for small budgets to get great PPC management. Oftentimes, what this has looked like is management from a company in which dozens of accounts are sold by an expert (PPCer or salesperson), and then handed off to be managed by an intern who…. let’s say made all their mistakes during this part of their office journey.
As we grew, we determined that the investment we needed to put into an account, any account, required a certain amount of time and energy and thus required our minimum pricing to be higher than many small businesses could afford. We found ourselves among a large group of agencies and consultants, since those who were willing to do the work required at the time in PPC, were also the ones who were (unsurpisingly) the most expensive.
A difficult 5-year long reality for Small Business PPC from 2014-2019.
What has changed?
The reality of PPC, is that machines are getting smarter. While some consider this to be a concern, or even threat to their jobs and businesses, we at ZATO see this as an opportunity. With advances in machine learning so ad testing, bidding, and overall recommendations and automation is improving we are able to offer services at lower rates than previously because we are able to rely more on automation… and pass along that savings to the consumer (you!).
Your New SMB PPC Program Awaits
Because of these advancements, we’re happy to officially announce what we’ve been testing for awhile now, our new Google Ads for Small Budgets program. With this program, we have looked at every possible angle to reduce our agency overhead so we can still invest top-tier PPC work into your accounts, but at a rate that the smaller businesses of the world can actually afford! How have we done this? It’s not magic, it’s math. We investigated every area of typical agency overhead cost, and made them more efficient with automated processes (sound difficult? It was!).
A few of those many ways are:
- Contract Building
- Internal Task Management
- Account Building
- Ongoing Management
- Ad Testing
- …& More!
The two core ways we are being more efficient to make rates more affordable are the following:
- Ongoing Account Management
What do you mean by “Use Automation”?
In this program, we utilize software such as Opmtyzr (for management) and Swydo (for reporting) to identify key opportunities for us to make the most important changes in an account. We believe this successfully marries the two crucial aspects to managing PPC in 2020 & beyond: smart human-led, machine automation. Automation for those easily repeatable areas of an account, but always with human oversight and accountability to ensure the account is always heading in the right direction.
What is the Communication Cadence Like?
Unlike our Full Service offering, in the Small Budgets program we’ll be focusing less on client communication and more on account optimization. We have identified that a good amount of agency overhead (which translates directly into pricing) can become ladened down by unnecessary communication. This looks like having a communication policy that looks a little more like a support ticket system that you would use on a SAAS solution. We are happy to answer email communication requests, and we will commit to respond within 2-3 business days. For some customers, this may not be enough of a communication cadence, and that’s where we would suggest to investigate our Full Service offering.
What Can We Expect In Terms of Reporting & Key Takeaways?
We send an automated monthly report 8 days into the month that includes account KPIs and graphs (in accordance with your account goals and how you measure success). Unlike the Full Service option however, this does not include key takeaways or custom updates. The core idea for this Program is that it is a lower cost option for clients who don’t mind not knowing all the inner workings of the account and just want to affordably hire the experts to manage it, while getting updated on KPIs so they can still be fully aware of program performance. We only communicate the specifics of what we’ve done in any account if a client is curious and emails us requesting that information. Clients who may be interested in our activity can also proactively check in on the Change History.
Who Is the Google Ads for Small Budgets Program For?
We purposefully did not name this the “Small Business” program, but the Small Budget program. We understand there are a variety of reasons why an account may be a smaller budget size…regardless of the size of the business itself! Because of that, any projects, local businesses, or national ecommerce brands who aren’t yet able to scale up to larger PPC budgets will find value in this program. It truly is a great program for any business that wants to invest a lower amount into Google Ads before scaling up, or even the business that just wants to have a solid PPC agency on their accounts…even if you have no future plans to scale dramatically. It’s Google Ads for the Smaller Budget!
Do You Also Help Us with Google Analytics, or Bing Ads, or Other Account Questions in this Program?
In order for us to keep this program as affordable as possible, it is for Google Ads only. We need to keep our internal processes as streamlined as possible for both task management, switching costs, and communication variables. This means we focus solely on your Google Ads account. The one exception to this is Google Merchant Center for Ecommerce shops. Because Google Merchant Center is required for Google Shopping Ads, ZATO will assist in getting things set up in GMC in Ecommerce Accounts, for an additional one-time setup fee.
Do I Own the Account & Data?
With the ZATO Small Budgets Program, we believe that account ownership is 100% your right. You as the advertiser are paying for the valuable data that you are receiving, as well as our work to get the account setup (that’s why Month 1 charged covers our setup costs and we begin management on Month 2 of the engagement), and that means we believe you own the Google Ads Account and Data, period.
“WHAT, doesn’t that mean you can cut ZATO’s access at any time and leave?!”
Yes, but that’s why we believe we can keep your business because of our great account work… not because we’re holding your account hostage over your head. We prefer to do business with people because, you know, it’s mutually beneficial. Not because we’re holding you hostage.
Why an Application?!
Last but not least, it’s worth pointing out that our current obsession with finding the clients we can work best together with, still fits into this program. That means when a business first submits the Small Budget application payment form on the page (here if you’re interested 😉 ), we have 3 business days to review the application before processing the payment and getting started. Business fit doesn’t mean you don’t have a great business model, it just means that sometimes a business will fit better with the personality, or objectives of another business, and we do our best to identify that before any money changes hands and notify you immediately of that decision.
What Happens After I Get Started?
Here’s a look at the typical steps that a Small Budgets Program applicant will go through:
- You investigate your options, and decide that the ZATO SMB Program is the best bang for your buck!
- You Go to the SMB Landing Page and Sign Up for the plan that fits best with your business.
- We review your submission within 3 days and then notify you of your status.
- If accepted, we process your payment and send you our Next Steps email.
- We get access to your Google Ads account.
- You fill out the on-boarding form that gives us the important information we need to get started on your account.
- We begin our work of research and account building in the next 2-4 weeks. Remember that month 1 is the Account Build where we first take things over and learn your account before fully managing it. You may not hear from us much during this time-frame. Feel free to check in, but know that we are working hard on getting things up for us to begin managing the account by month 2 of our engagement.
- We discuss the account and setup process through email addressing any any questions about the setup that we or you may have. We want to make sure we get it right, since we’re taking your account and making it the best we can!
- We push new and/or revised campaigns live and begin our management and reporting process as of month 2. Communication then transitions to an as-needed basis.
That should answer a lot of your questions, and give some insight into what this new program is all about. If you have any additional questions, feel free to reach out to us through our contact form: Contact ZATO Here
Intrigued by this new offering? We’d love to tell you more! Check it out, and then let us know if you have any questions, or submit the form and get rolling!
Visit the Google Ads for Small Budgets Program