Google Adwords Dirty Tricks

Guest Post by Chris Kieff from 1 Good Reason |

There are lots of restrictions to using Google Adwords that people find confusing and which force many to not try it out. However there are several easy things you can do even on a limited budget to make AdWords work hard for you. Some may think they are “dirty tricks” but they aren’t.
Google AdWords Myth

You can’t use a competitor’s name in your ads.- True, but the important part here is “in your ads“. You cannot use their name in your Ad. You can use a competitor’s name in your search terms.

Suppose I wanted to compete with “Chris Brogan“. To do this I would determine the keywords people would use to search for Chris Brogan. I spend a few minutes with Google’s AdWords Keyword Tool and find the top terms for that are:

  • chris brogan
  • christopher brogan
  • chris brogan blog
  • chris brogan bio
  • chris brogan agency
  • twitter chris brogan
  • new marketing labs (his company)
  • chris grogan (common misspelling)

Happily Google reports that none of these terms have high competition. The term “social media advertising” is also listed but it has very high competition, so I’m going to skip that one because it would be too costly. I selected those other terms for my new ad campaign.

Now it’s a little tough going up against the big guys on their home turf. Chris Brogan is a national figure but he’s based in Boston. I’m in New York so I’ll run my ads in a 100 mile radius of my location. This way my ads don’t show in his home turf (so maybe he won’t notice unless he reads this blog post, Hi Chris!) and I don’t spend money where I have less chance of getting business.

Now I can write an Ad, or better yet 3 or 4 different ads to display to anyone searching for Chris Brogan. Why 3 or 4 ads? Because Google will automatically rotate the ads and show the best performing ad more often. That way Google makes more money because more people click. And that way I can learn what ads people respond to.

Now I can stop right here and say, “OK I’ve got ads running whenever someone searches for my top competitors.” and that’s just fine. But wouldn’t it be better if I could put their name in the ads. But Google won’t let me do that. I can’t put a copyrighted term in my ads unless I own it. Except…

How to put a copyright term in Google AdWords Ads

“I” can’t put a copyright term in my ads. But the person who searches can! So I write my ads using Google’s Keyword Insertion feature! The Keyword Insertion feature then inserts the search term they typed into the Google search box in my ad automatically. This is very simple to do when I write my ad, Google has instructions here: Keyword Insertion Help

How it works:

Search term= “Chris Brogan”

Ordinary AdWords ad:

Brilliant Marketing
Social Media experts
Trusted by the best brands

Keyword Insertion Ad:

Chris Brogan Marketing
Social Media experts
Trusted by the best brands

Now in reality Google probably wouldn’t approve this particular ad. It’s a little too misleading because it implies Chris Brogan works for 1 Good Reason. But you can craft an ad that uses your competitors names, or trademarked terms in useful and creative ways to make your point to the customer. So while you can’t say “Ford” or “A&P” your customer can and you can use that carefully in your ad text to make your point.

This technique also works well when there are 1000′s of makes and model numbers you are dealing with. Use keyword insertion to insert the exact make and model your customer is searching for in your ads. That way you don’t need 1000′s of different ads for those 1000′s of different models.

If you would like to use this technique any of the other brilliant online advertising ideas 1 Good Reason has don’t hesitate to contact us here.

Now give me 1 Good Reason why you’re not advertising on your competitors names and terms in the comments below:

Chris Kieff is CEO of 1 Good Reason a top online marketing consultancy. We don’t make websites, we make websites better.. Experts in Online Advertising, SEO, social marketing, social media, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and website optimization. 1 Good Reason helps clients get more from their website and their online marketing efforts by optimizing their efforts and improving on site conversions. Read more of Chris’s ideas at:
Contact Chris at 201-677-8302 or