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Digital Marketing Google Ads

Google Ads Search Campaign Structure for DTC Brands

A good initial campaign structure for DTC brands

These are the 3 core Search Campaigns needed when setting up Google Ads for your DTC brand.

CampaignDescription
Branded SearchThis campaign will target your brand keywords.
Generic SearchThis campaign will target your top performing unbranded keywords
Keyword ProspectingThis will be a Dynamic Keyword campaign. The goal of this campaign is to find new profitable unbranded keywords.

Common Settings

These settings will stay the same across all of your Campaigns.

SettingValue
ObjectiveSales
Conversion GoalPurchases
Campaign TypeSearch
Campaign Goal MethodWebsite Visits
Networks: Choose NetworksInclude Search Partners
Exclude Google Display Network
LocationsSelect your primary location

Campaign:
Branded Search

This campaign targets your Branded search terms. It is mostly defensive in nature: It prevents your competitors from bidding on your brand term cost effectively. This campaign will generate the majority of your conversions, but you want to keep your cost-per-acquisition costs low, as most of the sales generated by this campaign are not incremental sales.

SettingValue
Campaign NameSearch: Brand
Bidding
What do you want to focus on?
Where do you want your ads to appear?
Percent (%) impression share to target?
Maximum CPC bid limit?

Impression Share
Top of Results Page
90%
$1.00
Daily Budget$20.00 / day
(adjust to your level of comfort)

Ad Groups

This campaign initially contains only two ad groups: One to target the exact match version of your brand name, and another to target the phrase match version.

Ad Group NameKeywordsNegatives
Brand – exactYour primary brand term, exact match

eg: [nike]
None
Brand – phraseYour primary brand term plus product names closely related to your brand, phrase match

eg: “nike”, “air jordan”
Exclude the exact match brand term, targeted in the “Brand – exact” ad group above.

eg: [nike]

Campaign:
Generic Search

This campaign will target high-performing non-branded search terms. It will initially be empty, but you will populate it as you discover high performing search terms.

SettingValue
Campaign NameSearch: Generic
Bidding
What do you want to focus on?
Set a target return on ad spend

Conversion Value
200%
(adjust to your profit margins
and comfort levels)
Daily Budget$10.00 / day
(adjust to your level of comfort)

Eventually this campaign will contain one ad group for each performing exact match search term, as well as a second ad group with the phrase match version of the performing term.

Ad Groups

Ad Group NameKeywordsNegatives
Term A – exactA high-performing generic term related to your brand, exact match

eg: [running shoes]
None
Term A – phraseA high-performing generic term related to your brand, phrase match

eg: “running shoes”
Exclude the exact match term targeted by the ad group above.

eg: [running shoes]
Term X – exactAs you discover new performing keywords, create a new exact match ad group for them.

eg: [basketball shoes]
None
Term X – phraseAlso create a phrase-match version of the ad group.

eg: “basketball shoes”
Exclude the exact match term targeted by the ad group above.

eg: [basketball shoes]

Keyword Exclusions

Your Generic Search Campaign may target your Branded search terms. Create a Negative Keyword List containing your branded terms, and add it to the campaign to ensure this does not happen.

Campaign:
Keyword Prospecting

The goal of the Keyword Prospecting Campaign is to find new high performing keywords.

When such a keyword is found it should be:

  1. Added to the Generic Search Campaign
  2. Excluded from this Keyword Prospecting Campaign
SettingValue
Campaign NameSearch: Dynamic Prospecting
Bidding
What do you want to focus on?
Set a target cost per action?

Conversions
No
Daily Budget$10.00 / day
(adjust to your level of comfort)

Ad Groups

This campaign will have a single dynamic ad group called “Catch-all”, targeting all pages on the site.

Ad Group NameAd TargetsNegatives
Catch-all
[dynamic]
All WebpagesExclude all keywords already targeted by your Generic Search Campaign.

eg:
[running shoes]
[basketball shoes]

Keyword Exclusions

This campaign will also target your Branded terms unless you explicitly exclude them. Create a Negative Keyword List containing your branded terms and add the list to the campaign.

Multi Country / Currency / Language

If you are targeting multiple countries, currencies, and languages, then you will generally want to replicate this campaign structure for each Currency x Language combination.

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