Aaron Levy maintains a wealth of knowledge when it comes to PPC, leadership, speaking, and so much more. That said, we invited Aaron to do an Ask Me Anything Session via our #general Slack channel, enabling the search community to ask him any question they desire. Below you will find a series of questions and answers asked during the session.
Q: Can you tell us a bit about yourself?
A: Hi, I’m Aaron! i head the enterprise SEM team at Tinuiti (the artist long ago known as Elite SEM). my teams about 120 people and we’re (i think) one of the larger spenders in the world, so it’s an interesting place to be! have been in SEM in some way shape or form for (sigh) 17 years. Based in philly, currently in New York. generally smarmy. Bigger fan of snoopy than any adult should be. Frequent golfer and cook. Currently imbibing in a mango orange spindrift.
Q: What is it that you love about the SEM / PPC / Paid Search world?
A: All of you :). The community is a huge part of it. But, from a more practical hands on perspective, for me it’s the perfect mix of psychology, math and math. It’s amazing that people tell us EXACTLY what they want when they’re searching, but it’s up to us to fill in the blanks as to why they’re searching, how to respond, yadda. That and I was always a math guy, so I love exploring the economics, market dynamics of bidding, getting aggressive end of month when other people run out of money, stuff like that. You can do really well in SEM by zigging when others zag.
Q: Hi Aaron! What are your clients seeing as far as economic headwinds? Are they shifting their digital marketing strategies as a result? What does that mean for the agency and what type of work you do for clients?
A: Broad blanket statement, and will try to answer categorically. For ecomm or retail businesses, they’re a lot more cautious than they have been in the past. I don’t see any of them truly pulling back, but they’re reticent to make a big splash like they may have in years past. SOME are starting to ramp up q4 goodies, but in general most are in a wait-and-see mode. We’re over-reporting if anything, to give them a better idea of what trends we’re seeing.
Early stage startups are getting hit a bit, and so the metrics we target are pivoting. Historically it may have meant subscriber growth with little regard for CaC or profitability – that’s changing a LOT, with more of a focus on efficient user acquisition. These folks are the ones who are making bigger switches/swaps.
B2B is generally quiet(er) this time of year, and it depends on the industry and if they feed off industrial/infrastructure investment. Most in the industrial space have been planning for a downturn for a few years so they’re starting to look towards an up turn which is nice.
But, short answer, people are cautious. they don’t want to repeat the bullwhip of 2020.
Q: What is the most challenging thing about working in SEM / PPC / Paid Search?
Q: To date you have done an unfathomable amount of public speaking engagements. What was your first speaking engagement like and what did you learn over the years speaking about PPC?
Q: Performance Max. Yay or Nay?
Q: You oversee a large team of PPCer can you talk a little bit about how you progressed from practitioner to leadership? Any particular things you wish you knew that would have helped you get there more quickly?
Q: What is the minimum budget you recommend for a small business wanting to try Google Ads or Microsoft Advertising for the first time.
Q: What are your general thoughts on the quality of support advertisers have received from the various platforms whether it be on the paid search side or social side, over the years?
Q: What’s been on your mind lately when it comes to PPC? Is there any one individual topic that has really interested you as of late?
Q: When looking into a prospective client’s account, what’s one of the spookiest encounters you’ve had?
Q: How did you start in PPC?
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