The B2B SaaS Marketing Blog

    Effective B2B SaaS PPC Tactics in 2024

    Last updated: July 17th, 2024

    Many B2B SaaS marketers we talk to believe they’ve maxed out their PPC program’s efficiency and the only way to keep pace with their competitors is to increase their budget.

    As a result, it can feel like you’re treading water. You might be able to keep pace, but never quite surpass your competitors.

    However, we audited dozens of B2B SaaS PPC tactics and strategies over the past several months, and most of them either make at least one mistake we’ll discuss below or overlook one of these key approaches.

    If you want to keep pace or surpass your competitors without bumping up your ad spend, here are the top mistakes to avoid and the exact solutions we’re implementing with our SaaS clients to maximize their PPC strategies.

    Do you need to accelerate your PPC performance this year? Reach out today for your Free Marketing Plan. We’ll identify low-hanging fruit and recommend a strategy to hit your goals.

    How To Approach The Paid Media Landscape in 2024

    In 2023, many SaaS marketers were operating with reduced budgets, but using a defensive approach to paid media won’t work in 2024. Demand is steadily ramping up, and your competitors will use this opportunity to capture more market share.

    Therefore, our first approach to improving a client’s PPC strategy is identifying mistakes causing inefficiencies. Below we’ll discuss a few of the most common inefficiencies many clients don’t realize they’re making.

    Once we’ve established a solid foundation for the marketing funnel, we implement strategies that are currently working.

    Identifying the most effective current PPC strategies requires testing and experimentation, which can be expensive and time-consuming.

    At Powered By Search, we work with dozens of SaaS clients and have the unique advantage of access to proprietary data from hundreds of campaigns. We also document each test in a hypothesis log to build our knowledge base. Therefore, we have a solid understanding of what’s currently working in PPC, and below we’ll share the exact PPC strategies that are currently working.

    If you’re unsure how to improve your PPC strategy, begin by auditing your approach for these mistakes and then deploy these highly effective tactics.

    7 Paid Media Mistakes To Avoid in 2024

    Before increasing your ad spend, make your current paid media strategy more efficient by auditing your strategy for these inefficiencies that are wasting your ad budget.

    1. Using Google Display for Performance Marketing

    We’ve found that Google Display ads, unless used for remarketing, are ineffective. Most of the traffic is bots or very low quality, so it tends to produce very low conversion rates.

    2. Keyword Stuffing/Single Keyword Ad Groups

    Keyword stuffing just makes your ads less clickable to searchers and search engines are savvy enough to identify synonyms and understand what your ad is about. Therefore, you’ll see a better ROI creating an ad that attracts the right audience and repels the wrong audience.

    3. Leveraging Manual Bidding

    While manual bidding won’t necessarily hurt your strategy, it requires so much time and effort and rarely produces better results than automatic bidding.

    4. Using Generic Non-Persona Content

    People will only click on an ad if it’s tailored to their persona. For example, if a prospect is looking for call center as a service, they will click on an ad for call center as a service rather than a generic ad titled “call service.”

    Even if someone happens to click on a generic ad, they may be the wrong audience. As a result, you’ll just waste valuable ad budget attracting a low quality lead.

    5. Investing Exclusively In BOFU and In Market Segments

    Bottom of the funnel keywords and marketing channels are more expensive than ever, so you’ll likely see high customer acquisition costs if that’s your primary strategy for attracting and converting customers.

    Additionally, most enterprise SaaS buyer journeys last at least six months and involve a complex buying committee. Therefore, it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to intercept and convert a prospect who has already invested a lot of time and resources into evaluating different providers.

    Instead, we advocate for a more holistic marketing approach that addresses each step of the buyer journey so that you start the relationship with prospects earlier in the journey. This ultimately makes your bottom of the funnel efforts more effective.

    Related: How to Navigate Cookieless Tracking in B2B SaaS Marketing

    6. Broad Keyword Targeting

    Broad keyword targeting is often ineffective because these ads are usually shown to a generic audience that may not fit your ideal customer profile.

    This is particularly true for enterprise SaaS companies, as these customers are often very specific individuals that require specific messaging.

    While broad keyword targeting can work if you have an extremely seasoned account manager and negative match list structure, we’ve found that it’s rarely effective.

    7. Utilizing tCPA/tROAS (Without Meaningful/Dynamic Value Tracking Updated By Offline Conversion Tracking)

    Your leads are likely valued differently, so assigning a single metric to each of them is rarely accurate. As a result, you might be overspending to acquire a customer or miss out on an opportunity to acquire a higher-value customer.

    7 Paid Media Approaches We’re Doubling Down On in 2024

    Once you’ve optimized your strategy by cutting inefficient tactics, here are some more effective strategies to help you squeeze more out of your budget and ultimately surpass competitors with a similar budget.

    1. Offline Conversion Tracking

    Your leads aren’t all equally valuable, and without accurate tracking set up, it can be difficult to even begin to identify what is and isn’t working and where you should invest more or less.

    That’s why we first set up lead scoring in HubSpot. This way, we know exactly how much a lead is worth and can adjust budget and strategy accordingly. In addition, the more (accurate) data you can feed to Google Ads, the more profitable your strategy will be as it can use that data to better optimize your ads.

    2. Use Segmented ABM Lists

    If you’re working primarily with just a TAM list, a large portion of the people on that list probably aren’t your ideal prospect. This is particularly true for enterprise SaaS companies that have a relatively small pool of high value prospects.

    As a result, you’ll probably waste a lot of ad budget on people who aren’t a good fit for your products.

    Instead, we’re using segmented ABM lists that target specific people at companies we know are a good fit for our clients’ products. Using a segmented ABM list also makes it easy for us to tailor the messaging on these ads to each stakeholder’s specific pain points. This can help you convince all members of the buying committee that your product is the best solution for their problem, which will help shorten the sales cycle.

    3. Thought Leadership Ads

    We’ve tested many thought leadership ads for our clients recently, and this ad format has proven to be highly effective. The key to making thought leadership ads effective is crafting authentic and genuine messaging.

    4. Non Skippable Videos

    It’s difficult to say anything meaningful and compelling in five seconds, so even though non skippable video ads are more expensive, we’ve found that they are more effective.

    Again, we use segmented ABM lists to target key stakeholders with non-skippable video ads, and we tailor each message to that stakeholder’s specific pain point.

    5. Brand Campaign Optimization

    Even if your campaigns are performing well, there are always opportunities to improve the efficacy of your ads.

    It’s also important to check that your ads are serving properly. For example, your ads should always appear first whenever you search for your brand name.

    Additionally, we’re always running small tests on our clients’ campaigns, and we record the results of each test in a Hypothesis Log to ensure we never make the same mistake twice. It also helps us build a database of information on what works for each client’s target audience, which helps improve the outcome of each subsequent test.

    6. Spot Checking How Ad Copy and Assets Are Served

    Even if you properly optimize your campaigns, ad platforms don’t always serve them correctly.

    If you notice that some of your campaigns aren’t performing well, search for that term in Google and see how the ad is served. For example, sometimes you’ll have headlines that are almost identical, but Google will still serve them with each other.

    7. Continual Tracking Audits

    Finally, even if you have everything set up to maximize conversions, it’s still important to regularly audit your campaigns and look for new opportunities to improve conversions.

    We also spend time ensuring that tracking is functioning properly in HubSpot so that we can accurately attribute closed won revenue to specific campaigns.

    How To Accelerate Your PPC Success

    There are plenty of nuances to paid media, and finding the best strategy for your specific brand requires a lot of testing.

    If you want to reduce the time spent testing campaigns and get results faster, you can accelerate your growth by working with a marketing agency that already has data from dozens of other SaaS companies running similar paid media campaigns. 

    Here at Powered By Search, we work exclusively with B2B SaaS companies, and our team of experts can give your brand an unfair advantage as we have accumulated a database of proprietary knowledge from working with dozens of clients.   

    To see if we can help your SaaS, reach out to us today for Free Marketing Plan. We’ll identify low-hanging fruit and recommend a strategy to to accelerate your growth. 

    What you should do now

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