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Kirk Williams
Campaign Strategy

Why Your PPC Agency Can't Scale Your Brand (As Much As You Think)

Why Your PPC Agency Can't Scale Your Brand (As Much As You Think)

10/25/19 UPDATE: Hello Facebook Agency Visitor Person!  We’re delighted to have you visit this awesome post. About a year ago, ZATO stopped offering Facebook Ads solutions so we could focus solely on what we do best: Google Ads. Because of this, we’re always interested in partnerships with great Social Advertising agencies (like yourself, wink wink!) and we offer referral fees for signed clients!  Anyway, back to it, and happy reading…

Post Summary

Maybe the most difficult thing to admit for a PPCer is that rarely (never?) do great PPC tactics themselves scale a business… though poor ppc tactics can absolutely prevent a business from scaling (or scaling as fast as it could).

So what DOES actually scale a business then?

What actually scales a business are things like:

  • fantastic creative/video
  • a PDP that actually SELLS to the potential customer landing on the site
  • the right product positioning
  • the right product pricing
  • smartly done promotions
  • well-planned & executed inventory management
  • wise cash management (esp around budgeting to the right channels)
  • Etc etc.

See a common theme there? All of those levers are owned by the brand. You, the brand operator, are the super hero here!

superhero brand operator scaling her business with google ads

The brand operator has far more ability to scale a brand with good decision making and execution than does the Google Ads agency.

I think more businesses would be more successful with Google Ads if they stopped trying to scale the channel itself (and thus spent endless time and energy and money “tweaking things” or “finding the perfect PPCer” and spent more energy time and dollars on solving the above problems.

I know that’s weird coming from a PPCer but I dislike being expected to solve a problem I can’t, so think it’s a worthy topic.

Final big caveat: once again I'll clarify as I did in the above:

  • I absolutely agree that a poor PPCer can literally harm a brand with bad tactics and account optimization decisions!
  • I absolutely agree that a poor PPCer can hinder a brand from scaling as rapidly as it could (if all the right levers I noted earlier are set) with bad tactics and account optimization decisions!

So to be very clear, I'm not saying there is no impact to your brand between a good or bad PPCer. You still need someone who understands the best way, to get the most efficient growth possible in your account... but I maintain that the primary scaling levers are within the brand operators' grasp, not the PPC operators.

What do you think? Agree/disagree? Why or why not?

Join the conversation on LinkedIn or Twitter!

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Kirk Williams
@PPCKirk - Owner & Chief Pondering Officer

Kirk is the owner of ZATO, his Paid Search & Social PPC micro-agency of experts, and has been working in Digital Marketing since 2009. His personal motto (perhaps unhealthily so), is "let's overthink this some more."  He even wrote a book recently on philosophical PPC musings that you can check out here: Ponderings of a PPC Professional.

He has been named one of the Top 25 Most Influential PPCers in the world by PPC Hero 6 years in a row (2016-2021), has written articles for many industry publications (including Shopify, Moz, PPC Hero, Search Engine Land, and Microsoft), and is a frequent guest on digital marketing podcasts and webinars.

Kirk currently resides in Billings, MT with his wife, six children, books, Trek Bikes, Taylor guitar, and little sleep.

Kirk is an avid "discusser of marketing things" on Twitter, as well as an avid conference speaker, having traveled around the world to talk about Paid Search (especially Shopping Ads).  Kirk has booked speaking engagements in London, Dublin, Sydney, Milan, NYC, Dallas, OKC, Milwaukee, and more and has been recognized through reviews as one of the Top 10 conference presentations on more than one occasion.

You can connect with Kirk on Twitter or Linkedin.

In 2023, Kirk had the privilege of speaking at the TEDx Billings on one of his many passions, Stop the Scale: Redefining Business Success.

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