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BizReport : Search Marketing : March 26, 2009


U.S. firm's SEM strategy targets weather

A repair company in the U.S. is taking direction from Mother Nature as to where, and when, it should place its search ads.

by Helen Leggatt

Tracking the weather has been the key to American Residential Services' (ARS) search engine marketing strategy, reports ClickZ. Not just any weather, but bad weather such as ice storms and flooding. The sort of meteorological mayhem that damages the air conditioning, heating units and plumbing systems that ARS repair.

TMP Directional Marketing, the local search marketing agency ARS uses for help with their search engine marketing strategy, made the connection between increases in keywords and periods of bad weather.

"As we were ramping up the campaign and doing keyword expansions, we started to notice that often times if there was unseasonably cold weather in certain areas or flooding, there was an increase in traffic," said Liz Serafin, senior director for SEM at TMP. "And in certain markets, depending on the duration of the triggers, they were running out of budget faster. So we took a step back and tried to get a little more strategic."

Using Google alerts and a team of coordinators who kept tabs on Weather.com and other meteorological sites, the agency was able to divert budget to areas that were likely to see an increase in need for ARS's repair services.

This more targeted, flexible strategy made much better use of ARS's budget, and increased leads nationally by 57%, without an increase in spend or exceeding their cost per lead expectations.

"For ARS, local search is growing significantly because you have the flexibility to define your audience, to define your geography and to move very quickly in the interactive environment -- whether that is paid search, natural search or Internet Yellow Pages," said Elizabeth Young, executive director of marketing and customer satisfaction at ARS.






Tags: ad targeting, American Residential Services, meteorological, Mother Nature, search engine marketing, SEM, TMP Directional Marketing, weather








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