Can Fifty Shades of Grey Add a New Lease of Life To Your PPC Ad Copy?

Online Marketing

Paid advertising campaigns are never a do-and-forget affair. Frequently tweaking and improving your ads will help with conversions, which include click-through rates and sales.

Even if your ads are presently enjoying good click-throughs, do not be complacent– search trends change and competitors are regularly adjusting parameters for their own ads. Stale copy could mean the difference between selling your product and losing money on paid advertising.

Here are some great ideas to help you invigorate your ad copy for better conversions:

Highlight different benefits from the rest

It is common for businesses in a specific industry to highlight a certain benefit in all their paid ads. Some of these industry benefits are so overused that they become redundant and do not mean anything to the searcher.

For example, many ad copies highlight ‘30 days guarantee ’ on their products. Consumers have come to accept this as the norm and will not necessarily find the guarantee interesting or compelling enough to click through or to purchase a product.

It is a waste of money and space to use words or highlight benefits that are actually not beneficial to your target audience.

If your copy is utilizing overused, industry-wide or generic benefits, it might be time to highlight a different benefit or value proposition that will stand out for the customer.

Get reading and refresh your words

Sometimes, what an ad needs is new words or phrases that help to fire up the campaign. Admittedly, it can be difficult to say the same thing using different words.

Look up magazines, get inspiration from offline and online advertisements, peek into competitor’s ads to see what words they are using to attract prospects, keep tabs with trends in your niche to find popular words that reverberate with your audience.

ppc ad copyI have my own little secret (not a secret anymore). I use men’s and women’s fiction books to come up with engaging and attractive words to use in campaigns – and it works very well. I’ll read any and every book available to me. Such books are incredibly useful since the main objective of these stories are to raise emotions in the reader.  So, now you have an excuse to read more widely and well, maybe even ‘that’ book..

The magic lies in being able to incorporate new words into your existing copy without changing the meaning or goals of the campaign.

Be sure to incorporate meaningful words that will emotionally connect searchers to your product.

Boost trust with social proof

Everyone wants what everyone wants. This means that people are more inclined to buy what others are buying and will stay away from a product that does not seem to be selling.

Integrating social proof into your ads can significantly improve conversions because of the trust it builds for your brand.

An ad that shows how many people have signed up for your webinar will likely draw more people to signup than one that does not show these numbers.

At the same time, ads that showcase the number or products shipped or sold attract more click throughs.

Highlighting the numbers shows prospects that people are indeed buying your products and if this is a popular product, then it must be valuable enough to meet their needs.

Does your call to action need a new lease of life?

The call to action (CTA) is undeniably a very important aspect of the ad copy, yet it is equally very easy to overlook or become complacent about. A weak or outdated CTA is a major reason for low click through rates and conversions.

Think of fresh, compelling reasons why searchers should click through the ad. If you have incorporated new words into the ad copy, perhaps you could draw inspiration from these new words or phrases to refresh your CTA.

Just like generic industry benefits, cliché language is a waste of space and will lower the impact of your CTAs.

PPC Ad Copy

No ad copy is genius enough not be regularly adjusted. Changing a word or two, slotting in some social proof or going beyond industry standards and highlighting the unique value of your brand will give you bang for your bucks. By paying attention to what others are doing you can consider ways to stand out from them in a positive way.


  1. Adrienne says:

    Hi Andrew,

    It’s been years since I tried my hand at PPC advertising and I have to tell you, it wasn’t a pretty experience for me. It cost me an arm and a leg, literally. By the time I took courses to learn how to do it correctly, Google wouldn’t approve any of my ads so I just said to heck with it and focused on the free and referral traffic.

    Your tips though are good so I can see them coming in very handy for anyone who is eager to have better success with their marketing.

    I wish I could contribute more to your post but my experience in this area is pretty non-existent! LOL!!!

    Enjoyed reading this though and love your headline.


  2. Andrew,

    I’ve done my fair share of PPC marketing and I definitely can testify to the impact of making those little tweaks and split testing your copy to see what really works. Sometimes you really have no idea until you test it!

    I love that you use fiction books for language ideas. Personally, I draw a lot of inspiration from magazine titles.

    Creating a unique value proposition is more and more important these days as the PPC space gets more crowded, so I’m glad you brought that up.

    Great tips! Thanks!

    • Hey Brittany,

      Nice to see you here 🙂

      You are absolutely right, its all about testing and seeing what works and doesn’t. Yes, some of the best copy is in books and magazines. I’ve actually been writing a sales page today and have been referring to some old direct mail copy from the 1930’s. Some of their headlines in those are absolutely great and still work today very well!

      Thanks for the comment!

  3. Elena Rif says:

    I usually don’t advertise too much, since I think that my kind of business (translation of various language combinations one of which is often Russian) is quite limited and does not need a big audience… so I am not sure I should learn more than traditional advertising I moderately use (newspaper ads, my name on my professional association’s site, etc.) Just sharing my thoughts! Thank you.

    • Hi Elena, thanks for stopping by!

      My view is that it really depends. Traditional advertising still works and there is a place for it. But PPC advertising is now so targeted (who you can serve your ad to) it’s quite possible to target the most specific type of potential client which is usually far more effective in my view than newspaper ads. The more defined your target audience the better your conversions will be. 🙂

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