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John Lavin

Blog Posts by John




Google Adwords Phone Support – Not News Here

April 6th, 2011

Every now and then when Google makes a change in Adwords, some of us may actually notice the change a day or two before its announcement.  This was true for me and the recent addition of the Automate function.  Andy Groller noticed it the morning before the announcement. When this happens, it’s hard not feel like you’re doing a good job in knowing your industry and staying on top of things.  With that said, yesterday, April 4th, this announcement was made on … Continue reading

3 Novice Mistakes of the PPC DIYer and How to Fix Them

April 4th, 2011

Now and then, clients will come to us and ask us to fix their PPC campaigns.  (We simply assume that by “fix them” they mean they just want more conversions.)  They tried doing it themselves, but hadn’t seen any return.  It seems a lot of do-it-yourselfers think that PPC is simplistic and runs on its own, like a refrigerator, but it isn’t something that works well when quickly set up, plugged in, and forgotten about.  It’s not a fire-and-forget system.  … Continue reading

Google Adwords, Numbers, and Stats

December 7th, 2010

In the PPC world, numbers are everything.  I use numbers and percentages in almost every optimizing decision.  Numbers help me to determine which ad is more successful, what to bid on certain keywords, and when to adjust bids, just to name a few ways numbers aid PPC specialists.  So when numbers contradict one another, it can really throw me for a loop.  I find myself asking the question, “Which stat do I believe?”  Below I cite two examples of Google … Continue reading

Bids Below the First Page Bid

November 11th, 2010

Dear Google, I think it is quite generous of you to have a program, Google Grants that provides grants to non-for-profit organizations.  I truly do commend you for it.  Allowing non-for-profit agencies to run ads on your network for free is awesome, not only is it a nice gesture, it makes the world a better place for many.  It is so kind of you to bid $1.00 dollar on keywords in Google Grants accounts in the name of charity.  It … Continue reading

Facebook Ad Targeting

October 30th, 2010

I would like to expand upon the last blog post I wrote and continue my complaining about Facebook ads.  There was a recent news flare up about how Facebook could be accidentally outing gay users. With the national attention given to teen suicides caused by bullying and the recent suicide of Tyler Clementi, this can be taken as troubling news.  Unintentional outings should be, and are under rather intense scrutiny.

Google Ads vs Facebook Ads

October 1st, 2010

As a PPC specialist here at DragonSearch, I know certain words and phrases wont be displayed (or tolerated?) by Google.  These are your typical R-rated words and phrases, but includes some other keywords as well.  The complete list of Google’s content guidelines for Adwords is here if you are curious.  I recently ran into a problem that highlighted this necessary policy.  The Magic Foundation is a not-for-profit client who specializes in helping people with disorders associated with the lack of … Continue reading

Beware the Status Update

September 14th, 2010

As an online marketer and advertiser here at DragonSearch, my following opinion is a secret (maybe not so much anymore) and it’s rather sacrilege – I don’t fully trust the internet.  Just because I make a living off of the perception that I trust the internet, doesn’t mean I have to trust it.  I have a Facebook page, but its privacy settings are set to not allow anyone I don’t know to see anything on my page.  I don’t accept … Continue reading

Google Homepage Conducts Search as You Type

September 8th, 2010

****UPDATE: This was posted right before Google Instant was revealed.  Thoughts and commentary are likely to change significantly on my next blog.**** When Google picks certain users to do beta testing on, I wonder how they go about choosing them.  Do they rely on demographics?  What percentage of users do they test to satisfy their results?  Do the users that get chosen feel as lucky as I would?  I always hoped that some day I would get to be one … Continue reading

Google and Youtube Movies, Coming to a Monitor Near You

August 31st, 2010

It is being reported that Google-owned YouTube is in discussions with major movie studios to obtain pay-per-view rights to movies.  The report claims that by the end of the year we could be watching full Hollywood movies on YouTube instead of clips of stupid animal tricks.  This is the next step in a natural progression that started with the launch of Google TV.  This is very exciting, as I have been waiting a long time to see YouTube start offering … Continue reading

Google’s Image Search Results

July 22nd, 2010

Like many people my age, I have a hard time keeping up with the “Who’s who” of today’s world.  Friends often mention people who I have heard of, but I do not know who they actually are.  When this happens, I often resort to a Google Images Search.  Over the years I have found out who people are by seeing what they look like.  Their image will then remind me of what movies I have seen them in or what … Continue reading

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