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“Our PPC paid-search performance improved significantly under Nina’s management. Her knowledgeable guidance also helped us make inexpensive changes to our dynamic Web site which increased our natural search position and decreased our need to spend more on AdWords.” — , Webmaster, Hazelden Foundation
MinnPost is a nonprofit, nonpartisan enterprise whose mission is to provide high-quality journalism for news-intense people who care about Minnesota. They publish written news and analysis, videos, and audio online at www.MinnPost.com. The site also features commentary pieces from the community and comments from readers on individual stories.
MinnPost acquired a Google Grant, which is a program Google offers for non-profits through an application process. Organizations that are awarded a Google Grant receive $10,000 of in-kind advertising to promote outreach, fundraising, and volunteers for their nonprofit. The client’s goal with the grant is to drive as much traffic to the site as possible. One challenge faced when working on Google Grants is that you cannot bid over $1.00 for a keyword. Because of the limitations, the ads don’t always show on the first page of Google because the ad falls below the first page bid.
Since MinnPost is a news source, the content is always changing and users search queries are always changing as well. What was the hot topic in the news last week, might not always be relevant the next week. This creates a challenge since we don’t always know what audiences are searching for.
In order to combat the limited keyword bids, we expanded the keywords to include less competitive ones and added long-tailed keywords. These keywords have lower cost-per-clicks which allowed MinnPost to bid in the AdWords auctions more, and ultimately drive more site traffic.
To make sure we were staying relevant in the hot topic issues, we frequently check the MinnPost site and work with the client team to develop new campaigns around emerging news stories. One example of this was when the client was updating new data sets for publishing. In this particular data set, there was a map of the congressional redistricting. Nina Hale Inc. created an ad group based around these terms and when the big news stories hit, we were there – driving over 3,000 visits to the site.
With continued expansion on campaigns and monitoring of relevant news, we have taken the MinnPost paid site traffic from roughly 900 monthly visits to over 13,000 monthly visits in just six short months.