Welcome to the Jungle – Volume 2 – “Swinging Through the Vines”

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It is hard to believe that almost two months have gone by since I started this new, but exciting, journey into the world of Search Engine Marketing. In the beginning, things seemed overwhelming. Continuous observation, insights, training, and the patience of the seasoned vets I call my colleagues, has helped me progress at a rather fast pace. Beginner’s anxiety has now faded away which has made taking deeper dives that much easier.

At first, I wasn’t particularly thrilled when I was told I would be the ‘Toyota Prius” of the department. Nothing against the Prius – it’s a great car for what it does – it’s just not quite my style. But what I was thrilled about was the fact that I would be a “hybrid” – able to work with, and contribute to SEO, Social Media and SEM teams. I knew I had a lot to learn and the most important thing was getting down to business right away.

Capturing the Basics

Learning the ins and outs of PPC was the first order of business. What started out rather daunting and intimidating ended up being quite interesting. After I got past the basics of the Google AdWords and Bing Ads interfaces, the pieces slowly started falling into place. Repeatedly shadowing on keyword bidding, geo-targeting, ad groups, ad testing/campaign optimization, goal and budget tracking, and reporting assisted in putting the pieces of the puzzle into place. As a result of my increased knowledge base, I have started managing the continuous optimization of a few accounts.

While feverishly working on PPC, I saw an opportunity to slide into SEO and Social Media. Being a car enthusiast since I was a kid, the opportunity to engage with others who share my passion made my eyes light up. After learning the posting guidelines and the tools used to schedule posts across various platforms at the same time, the rest was history.

Generating automotive content is like tying my shoes…I can do it with my eyes closed, not to mention it’s much more fun than opting PPC campaigns! I now manage the daily posting for a handful of our dealerships and wouldn’t change a single thing about it.

Seeing the engagement of our Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ users is an immediate reward for being able to successfully connect with others, “car guy” to “car guy.” Making a solid connection with other auto enthusiasts maintains interest, a friendship of sorts, a connection with the dealership’s surrounding community – all with the hope that they will visit the dealer to ultimately purchase a car, or at least service it. Creating posts for the different blogs we run for various clients has also been a huge highlight of my week-to-week responsibilities.

Google Certification Tests

My most recent accomplishment has included passing part one of the AdWords test to become Google certified. The 300+ page study guide took me back to my last year of college…the late nights studying and the general test anxiety helped me pass with a 95%.  Part two is the big test, and the same preparations have been underway to put that one in the bag too.

One of the best things about my job is that there is never a dull moment. Whether it’s working on Social Media posts, pulling monthly reports, optimizing paid search campaigns, blogging, continuing training, or keeping up on the latest industry news, I come to work every day happy and ready to tackle any task at hand. In the near future, I look forward to working more face-to-face with our clients as well as continuing to find new and innovative ways to get people excited about one of the best things this world has to offer – cars.

Dan Brauer is a Search Marketing Associate at Dealer Product Services. Dan transitioned from the world of market research to automotive marketing in the beginning of 2014. Currently building his knowledge in the areas of PPC, SEM and Social Media, Dan is working diligently to immerse himself in all areas of digital marketing. His vast knowledge of cars assists him on a daily basis with his roles at DPS. Dan is a hardcore Nissan enthusiast, from the legendary Skyline/GT-R to the V8 Altima Supercars and everything in between. In his free time, you can find Dan supporting local performance shop Boostin Performance (home of the fastest 2nd gen AWD Eagle Talon in the world) at area drag strips, listening to hip-hop and R&B, playing basketball, reading import tuner magazines, traveling and enjoying time with friends.

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