Back in 2004, Google lifted the restrictions on trademarked terms. Since then, it has been up to the individual companies to protect their primary assets. This is more so when considering that other brands can use your brand name to advance their own objectives. For example, if your brand has a good reputation, it is not uncommon to find brands that are using your brand name in order to command more authority. Although this may be scary, there is a way to keep them from doing this.
This post covers some of the methods you can use to determine if other advertisers are bidding on your brand terms to boost their rankings. The post also looks at some of the things you can do to curb this practice.
How To Check For Brand Bidding?
There are several methods that other advertisers use to target your branded keywords. The good news is that there are methods you can use to find out if your branded keywords are being used. Below are some of the things you need to do when checking if your branded keywords are being used.
The most basic method you can use to reveal if marketers are using your branded keywords is to simply do a manual search. You achieve this by running a number of tests. You can use search engines for this. Search various variations of your branded keywords and see if there are competitors who are using them. Some advertisers may be using long tail keywords, so don’t forget to search the long tail variations of your keywords. Misspellings are also a practice that is used by marketers.
The second thing you need to do is to make use of AdWords Keyword Planner. This will give you great insights into what is happening behind the scenes of paid search. Start with the ‘suggested bid’ column after adding a list of your branded keywords. If other advertisers are using your branded keywords, chances are you will probably find them in the list of the highest suggested bids. If more people are using your keyword, you might end up paying more for your PPC campaigns.
It is also possible to use the keyword planner to run a test on branded keywords that are not yet in your account. The best thing is that the AdWords keyword planner will help you take a look at your branded keywords and how they are being used from a different lens.
Auction Insights Report:
This is yet another great method you can use to see how your keywords are faring. The results here will show you advertisers that are showing up as well as how frequently and in what position. This information is essential for the branded keywords.
The good thing about using auction insights report is that you will not miss any of the advertisers. This is unlike using the manual searches that have a bigger margin for error. The auction insights report will further give you real data from your account rather than having to deal with estimates as is the case with the keyword planner.
How To Protect Your Branded Keywords?
Research shows that you will be able to reduce your campaign cost by up to 51% when you protect your branded keywords. Now that you know how to identify if your competitors are using your branded keywords, it is time to learn how you can curb this problem. There are a number of tactics you can use for this.
Register The Trademark With Search Engines:
This is a great option to go with. When you go for the trademark complaint that involves all the advertisers, Google will store this data and keep advertisers from ever using your trademarks in their advertising copies. This is a great way of combating search arbitrage and other forms of abuse. Although the strategy will not stop infringement 100%, it will definitely reduce the problem significantly.
It is important for you to remember that this option will only work if you have already trademarked your brand name in the countries in which you operate. You have to provide registration information for all the countries that you wish to protect your branded keywords in.
Acquire More Real Estate In The Ad Extensions:
The ad’s quality score will be high on the branded keywords. To take more advantage of this, you have to make use of ad extensions. By doing this, when you add the ad extensions to your campaign, they will appear when the Ad Rank is above certain levels. Higher quality scores result in higher ad ranking. The extensions will most likely show on the branded keywords. This will help push down your competitors and increase the space you take up on the search results page.
The simple use of ad extensions will boost your ad rank. Although the criterion being used by Google is still unclear regarding ad extensions, they create positive feedback loops.
Influence Price With Your Quality Score:
The quality score of your branded keywords will affect the bids needed to hold the top position. When you have a higher quality score, you have a more competitive advantage over your competitors. This means you can bid less in order to hold the top ad slots. One way of protecting your branded keywords is by setting a higher maximum bid on the branded keywords. This will make your ads insurmountable. With time, the high cost will discourage advertisers from using your branded keywords.
Taking control of your SERP is important especially if advertisers are already using your branded keywords. The good news is that when you have the branded keywords, the ball is usually in your court and all you need to do is take action. What is even better is that search engines have already provided a number of tools that will help you take advantage of your branded keywords and keep other advertisers from using them. The above tips will certainly help you get started on the right foot.