The truth is that in some situations Trademark Bidders can be very good for a company and add a ton of value, you just have to know how to work with them and how to manage them. The truth is, at least in my opinion, is that trademark bidders do not have your best interest in mind.
Many of them will never run real PPC on generic and long tail or non-trademark terms. Unfortunately there are tons of them out there and they do everything from day parting you out, to geo targetting so that you never see their ads or how they are driving sales. What you can do however is use Brandverity. So lets go over the bad types of trademark bidders and then the situations where trademark bidding can be a good thing.
So now that we covered some of the bad aspects about trademark bidding Affiliates, here is the one situation where I think it can be beneficial to the Merchant. When your company name is extremely general or your url is like weddinggifts. They will not only bid on terms like blue widgets which is general, but they will also try bidding on bluewidgets.
In this case you will find that it is expensive to cover yourself on your own company names. There will be competition bidding on these terms and you probably want as much of the real estate as you would want to have. This is also true on one word domains which are also general. Having trademark bidders bid on the terms, but not your url can benefit you because they will give you extra space in the paid ad space.
So here is what I recommend doing to gain as much space as possible with as little damage to your own margins as possible. Instead it takes credit for sales you would have had anyways, but in a way that is much less severe than adware. There are a couple of situations where trademark bidding can be beneficial, but they are much fewer than you will be lead to believe.
If you found this post helpful, subscribe to my newsletter to receive the rest of the series, as well as my other posts via email the minute they go live. The next post in the series is on adware and parasites. A common practice, or one that was actually seen as something that was good years ago was trademark bidding in Affiliate Programs. The Networks would encourage it and convince Merchants that it was a good thing and many Outsourced Affiliate Program Managers would convince their Clients of this as well.
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But why would they do this? What are the benefits of allowing Affiliates to bid on trademarks and what are the downsides to it? This is a question that comes up over and over and over again so I wanted to do a post addressing the possible benefits as well as the negatives and why I recommend that you pretty much never allow it. The reason why these two groups of people, not to mention the Affiliates who were doing it themselves, would recommend doing this is that they have to do absolutely no work and they will make money by poaching off of your own efforts and customers.
You do your best to provide the best possible service for your customers to get them to come back to you. You risk a lot of money advertising to build your brand and bring in new customers and when they search for your site and company by name, you have done your job by building awareness and new customers. The point of an Affiliate program is to be able to reach a group of customers that you may not have been able to reach on your own. If they are searching for these terms then they know you exist and they are probably going to be your highest converting terms because you have already had them as a customer and they have come back or they have seen your ads and you have spent time and money to build their interest and bring them in to your site.
Because they normally convert high and the Affiliate had to do almost no work, not to mention trademark names and urls are dirt cheap to bid on so the Affiliate is out almost no money, the Affiliate will have to do no work and will add absolutely no value to you because they will be taking credit and making money off of the people you worked extremely hard at developing and bringing in as a customer. The Trademark Bidding Affiliates love it because they have to do absolutely no work and they will profit off of your hard work.
Networks that get an override fee or network fees on each sale love it because you are handing them money without them having to add value to you or by them having to help you get content and blogging or coupon sites with newsletters and making them do work by helping you reach an audience you cannot reach on your own sales which they will bill you for.
Think about it, why should you have to pay out on sales from customers you already had when they were searching for your company by store name or website url or were in your shopping cart already and left to find a coupon off terms like yourdomain.
Now with that said, if the person was already a customer but may not have come back for 5 months or a year, then that previous customer reads a blog they follow and finds you again through an Affiliate link, you should definitely pay out because that Affiliate who was not poaching or trying to optimize organically for your trademark and brought you a customer back because that customer trusts their recommendations and reminded this customer that you exist. There is a huge difference between that and someone who was already looking for your url or was already in your shopping cart.
Outsourced Affiliate Program Management Companies love it because not only do their numbers look better but if they get a bonus or are working on a percentage of sales, they make more money or look better in your eyes because their numbers are good which also means they get to keep their contract because they were able to take credit for people who were already your customers.
So with that said, is there any actual good that can come from trademark bidding? Is there any good that can come from allowing Affiliates to bid on your trademarks and trademark extensions? Although this does make sense to a point, there are other ways to get around this and not have to spend a ton of money on your current customers. If your domain name and company name is extremely general like wedding store or blue widget, chances are that tons of people will be bidding on those terms.
By allowing Affiliates to bid on terms like wedding store, but not allowing them on your domain name like bluewidgets. If they add in coupon code or bid on the url then that is a different story and they are potentially poaching your traffic and customers. You also want to make sure that you mention that they are not allowed to direct link to you as that will cause your own ads to not show up. Since only price conscious consumers are likely to spend the time to claim the savings, coupons function as a form of price discrimination , enabling retailers to offer a lower price only to those consumers who would otherwise go elsewhere.
In addition, coupons can also be targeted selectively to regional markets in which price competition is great. He transformed Coca-Cola from an insignificant tonic into a profitable business by using advertising techniques. Candler's marketing included having the company's employees and sales representatives distribute complimentary coupons for Coca-Cola.
The company gave soda fountains free syrup to cover the costs of the free drinks. It is estimated that between and one in nine Americans had received a free Coca-Cola, for a total of 8,, free drinks. By Candler announced to shareholders that Coca-Cola was served in every state in the United States.
In Australia consumers first came in contact with couponing when a company called Shop A Docket promoted offers and discounts on the back of shopping receipts in There are different types of values applied to coupons such as discounts, free shipping, buy-one get-one, trade-in for redemption, first-time customer coupons, free trial offer, launch offers, festival offers, and free giveaways. Similarly, there are different uses of coupons which include: Coupons can be used to research the price sensitivity of different groups of buyers by sending out coupons with different dollar values to different groups.
In addition, it is generally assumed that buyers who take the effort to collect and use coupons are more price sensitive than those who do not. Therefore, the posted price paid by price-insensitive buyers can be increased, while using coupon discounts to maintain the price for price-sensitive buyers who would not buy at a higher price. Store coupons are coupon-based discounts offered for a particular item or group of items. The issuing store will accept its own "store coupons", but some stores will also accept store coupons that are issued by competitors.
Coupons issued by the manufacturer of a product may be used at any coupon-accepting store that carries that product.
Manufacturer's coupons have the advantage of being currency at a variety of retailers, not just at one store. Grocery coupons are incentives for people who want to save money, but manufacturer coupons are primarily intended to advertise products and lure new customers with financial incentives.
They may also be used to increase the sales of newspapers or other publications. For example, people may purchase multiple copies of a newspaper or magazine in order to use the coupons contained within. Some grocery stores regularly double the value of a grocery coupon as an incentive to bring customers into their stores. Additionally, stores might hold special events where they will double or triple coupon values on certain days or weeks.
Whether or not a specific grocery chain will double or triple coupons usually depends on the original coupon value.
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Most coupons have an expiration date after which they will not be honored. For example, Christmas coupons are valid only throughout the Christmas week. American military commissaries overseas honor manufacturers coupons for up to six months past the expiration date. Customers may get these coupons from various sources, including national newspapers and the Internet, with web sites offering free printable grocery coupons can be printed at home and use them at retail store.
Some major grocery chains also produce digital coupons that may be loaded onto the retailer's loyalty card at home, or at a coupon dispensing machine located in store. In , the top five vehicles for distributing consumer packaged goods coupons in the U. There are coupon-providing websites that provide customers with coupons of various stores. These sites accumulate coupons from various sources.
Clipping coupons from newspapers has been the most popular way to obtain coupons, though Internet and Mobile Phone coupons are gaining wide popularity. Some retailers and companies use verification methods such as unique barcodes , coupon ID numbers, holographic seals, and watermarked paper as protection from unauthorized copying or use.
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Other than newspaper, there are also coupon book publishers and retailers who compile vouchers and coupons into books, either for sale or free. Online retailers often refer to coupons as "coupon codes", "promotional codes", "promotion codes", "discount codes", "keycodes", "promo codes", "surplus codes", "portable codes", "shopping codes", "voucher codes", "reward codes", "discount vouchers", "referral codes" or "source codes". Internet coupons typically provide reduced cost or free shipping, a specific dollar, percentage discount or to earn cashback while some offer to encourage consumers to purchase specific products or to purchase from specific retailers.
Because paper coupons would be difficult to distribute and redeem, typically secret words or codes are distributed for consumers to type in at checkout.
Marketers can use different codes for different channels or groups in order to differentiate response rates. A mobile coupon is an electronic ticket solicited and or delivered to a mobile phone that can be exchanged for financial discount or rebate when purchasing product or service. Coupons are usually issued by manufacturers of consumer packaged goods or retailers, to be used in retail stores as part of a sales promotion. The customer redeems the coupon at store or online.
In some cases, customers may redeem the mobile coupon at the point of sale. What is unique about mobile coupons is the memory of information in the coupons often outlast the expiration dates of the coupons themselves, triggering actual purchases at later dates.