Using Google Ads to advertise your Funeral Home

Google Ads can be an extremely effective way to advertise your funeral home. However, if you do it wrong, it can also be a complete waste of money.

In this video, I provide an overview of the 2 types of Google Ads, when to use each type, plus 5 Google Ads tips.

The video is just under 10 minutes long. Below the video is a short summary, and below that is the full transcript (both are AI-generated)

Summary – Google Ads for Funeral Home Advertising

In this video, John Callaghan discusses Google advertising for funeral homes. He explains that there are two types of Google ads: display ads and search ads. Display ads show up on various websites and are paid per view, while search ads appear when someone searches for specific keywords and are paid per click or call. He also mentions three types of search ads: responsive search ads, Google Map ads, and Google screened ads. He advises using Google advertising if a funeral home is not showing up in the three-pack (top three listings on Google Maps), if there is an awareness problem, or if there is something unique to market. He provides five tips for Google advertising, including investing a significant budget, using direct response strategies, optimizing the click-through rate, using landing pages, and not automatically trusting Google’s suggestions.

Full Transcript – Google Ads for Funeral Home Advertising

Hi, this is John Callaghan. This week, I’m continuing my series on advertising your funeral home. Specifically, this week, we’re going to talk about Google Advertising, one of my favorite subjects doing Google advertising for a very long time.

It’s a subject that, realistically, I could record a full-day course on, but we’ve only got a few minutes, so I’ll cut to the chase. I’ll give you what it is, when to use it, and then five tips.

What is Google advertising?

Fundamentally, there are two types of Google ads: display and search ads. In a display ad, your ad shows up around another piece of content on the Internet. It could be practically any website; somebody has agreed with Google to display ads on that website.

You are paying per view. Typically, it doesn’t work well, but it’s inexpensive.

It’s a handy tool to use if you’re a new funeral home and people don’t know about you in town. If there’s a website that you can advertise on, it’s not a bad thing; just don’t expect an awful lot from it.

Search ads are very different. Search ads are how Google makes billions of dollars every year.

Someone typed in cremation services near me or funeral homes near me, saw your ad, and clicked on it.

In a search ad, you pay per click, or if the search is conducted on a phone, you can pay per call.

There are currently three different kinds of search ads. However, Google is constantly rolling out new things, so by the time you watch this video, this might be outdated.

The three types are responsive search ads, Google Map ads and Google screened.

Google has been using responsive search ads since its earliest days. This is where they make most of their money. When someone types in funeral homes near me, Google displays a series of ads in response.

Those ads used to always be displayed at the top of the search results. Now, they’re not. Now, they’re typically scattered within the content of the body of the search page.

In the ad, you’ll see a headline, some messages underneath it, your phone number, and a few other pieces of information. It’s still extremely powerful, but the game has changed quite a bit.

Google Maps typically is not a paid listing. However, you can sponsor your listing and have it show up in the number one spot every time. It’ll have the word “sponsored” beside it, but it’s very effective. People click on them all the time, and it tends to be a good tool to use.

Google Screened is a brand new program that Google is just rolling out.

We’ve run through the process a few times for clients. It’s not trivial to get approved. You have to go through an approval process. You’ve got to set things up properly, and at that point, your business name and your phone number or contact information are all displayed at the top of the search results.

My gut says this is where Google expects to make its next billion dollars. Local businesses who go through the screened process and then will pay them to have their listing appear at the top every single time.

Again, my gut says this is where Google will make their next billion dollars.

When do you use it?

Well, if you’re not showing up in the three pack. The three pack is if I type in funeral homes near me, Google displays a map and three listings beside that map.

If you’re not on that list of three, you need to be using Google advertising. If you are in it, you might still need Google advertising, but not automatically. If you’re not in that three pack, you need to be doing it.

If you have an awareness problem. If you’re a newer funeral home or maybe you’ve changed your name or something like that, and if people don’t know about you, Google advertising is a good thing to be doing.

Also, if you have something unique to market, most ads that Google runs are the same. They say the same thing on the map. What Google wants people to decide on is the reviews. They want people to consider their Google reviews, which are wonderful, but if you have something unique to market, a Google ad is a great way to put that message in front of people.

Here are five tips for Google advertising.

Tip #1: Go big or go home, as in, don’t just dabble, and don’t waste your money.

If you’re not willing to put in at least 20, 30, or $40 a day into Google advertising, it’s not worth it. The main reason it’s not worth it is that Google has recently changed over to a full artificial intelligence system that must be taught how well your community will respond to your ad.

Every ad now goes through what’s called a learning phase, and if you give it a little bit of money, you’ll be stuck in that learning phase for a very long time. I’ve seen it go a month that you’ve been stuck in the learning phase because you’re not giving them enough budget.

It used to be that you could spend a little bit of money with Google and they would produce results. That’s not the case anymore. You either need to spend a lot of money with them or don’t—just don’t spend anything with them. If you just dabble, they will take your money and produce nothing in terms of results, so go big or go home.

Tip #2, use direct response strategies.

Last week, I talked about direct response and brand awareness, which are two different types of advertising. Well, Google can be used for either one, but the best way is direct response.

Direct response involves trying to get people to take action, and that’s very possible in Google and a very powerful part of it. You need to use direct response strategies when doing Google advertising.

Closely related to that. Tip #3 is to optimize your ad for the click-through rate.

The words you use in the ad get somebody’s attention and hopefully get some interest in your product or service and what you offer. They’ll click on your ad. That clicking rate, how often somebody clicks on that ad, produces something called the click-through rate. That’s the key number you want to optimize.

You want to look at that ad and do everything possible to change its content so that people actually click on it.

Interestingly, the higher your click-through rate, the less Google charges you per click. Optimizing your click-through rate makes it cheaper.

Tip #4, related to direct response, is to use landing pages.

They could be on your website or a separate website, but send the traffic to a special landing page whose content matches the ad.

You want to think of the ad as starting the story. This needs to continue the story. If you send all that traffic to your homepage, you’re wasting your money in almost every case.

Traffic sent to your homepage will not convert because your homepage is not optimized to convert that traffic. It’s optimized to get people to an obituary.

It’s not optimized to get somebody to continue the message that you put in an ad. They should come to your landing page, continue the story there, and feel like they need to click a button to call you or take some action and take a step toward you. You do that with a landing page. You don’t do that with your website’s homepage.

Tip #5: Do not automatically trust Google. Google tends to be the most trusted company out there, but they’re not people.

They will flood you with suggestions to optimize your ads within your Google ad account.

Guess what? Every one of those suggestions is good for Google, but it could be better for you. It’ll increase your costs and you’ll spend more money with them, but it’s not going to help you get more traffic to your website or landing page and convert that traffic.

Do not automatically trust Google. They tend to be one of the most trusted companies out there. Still, when it comes to Google advertising, they have one thing in mind: maximize their dollars and how much money they will make, not necessarily maximize your return on investment.

That’s Google advertising. I’ll be back next week with more information on advertising your funeral home.

Bye for now.

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