A was brainstorming with a friend recently about lead generation and she was contemplating on which search terms to put more money. She had tried up'ing her daily spend, but all she was getting was more clicks, not more business.
Google and Yahoo are now the Yellow Pages. (I still can't believe they print and deliver those big books) If today Google and the rest dropped you from their database it would not be unreasonable to freak-out until that problem was fixed.
It certainly does make sense to pay for leads, but paying for the wrong clicks will drain the ad budget and you'll end up with people who maybe will view your home page for two seconds, then bounce.
Sidebar: If you want to experiment with your pay per click ROI, here's a handy form from metamend.com
Clicks are great. Traffic is a must. But you want relevant traffic otherwise, it's like going to the bar to find a wedding cake. Imagine if the bar owner had to pay for the person to get to the bar, only to learn a tall cake was the only thing on his mind.
Ok, everyone knows what seach term relavance is. Enough enough.
Before I get to the brainstormy part, I want to contrast what people are currently paying for clicks in Ann Arbor. Here are some numbers I compiled by viewing the source code of three reasonably well established agents in this area, then combined it with current market value of their search terms. (I made up some of those headings, like TSL and SPM, but they are real numbers ... see below for definitions)
Someone willing to pay almost $12 per click on the search term "ann arbor home" -- is it any wonder that Google opened today at $348.99 is currently up $5.13?
If you're a baker, to catch the person looking for a wedding cake, it's better to go hang out where they sell Better Bride magazines. Waiting at the bar might work, but it will take a lot longer for a click to convert to a lead.
Now for the brainstormy part
As a real estate agent, you want to know when people are moving, so why not cozy-up with a moving/ transport company? Not everyone will have an agent when they begin getting moving quotes, and if they're new to the area, your well designed website will still be of value to them. Maybe they're renting while they look or this could just be your chance to meet someone new in the area to expand your circle of influence.
I called this company to ask if they would entertain such an idea and the owner seemed very open to it.
The relationship could be one of simple banner exchange, destination city specific targeted ads, or the purchasing of email addresses. (Currently they don't sell their data, but my hunch is that nobody has ever made them an offer)
So am I missing something? What's the downside to this?