From old hands to cool dudes – two former UK advertising execs are taking Google to new heights

The world of internet development has been the preserve of USA university graduates but now there is a challenge from two UK executives aged 100 between them.
Oct. 2, 2010 - PRLog -- Chances are you won’t find Paul Booth and Bob Maddams, two middle-aged ex-London advertising agency men, scooting down a corridor on rollerblades in t-shirts and trainers.  But they are fast becoming movers in the world of Google advertising.  They’ve just launched Copy4Clicks, the world’s first online copywriting company specialising in writing Pay-Per-Click (PPC) ads.

PPC ads are the 4 line ads found on Google and other search engines, which appear under the heading “sponsored links” and are triggered to appear when users searching for products and services type in relevant keywords.  These little ads have made a big impact in the UK.  In excess of £2 billion is spent on these little ads in the UK alone – more than is spent on television advertising.

Paul has a traditional advertising background working in TV and press and went on to work as marketing director of Quantum, the digital media buying agency, and more recently was recruited as a consultant at WPP agency Ogilvy.  While Bob is a highly experienced and award-winning copywriter whose agency career included working at Collett Dickenson Pearce and M&C Saatchi.  He has also worked as a freelance journalist for The Sun, the Daily Mirror, the Times and the Observer.  

The light bulb moment happened when Paul realized that, despite so much money being spent on Google PPC advertising, no attention was being given to the actual writing of the ads.

“Ad agencies weren’t interested in writing PPC ads, it was beneath them.  And even if they were, it would have proved prohibitively expensive,” he explains.  However, the partners were convinced that experienced copywriters would write far more effective PPC ads.  They tested the concept on a small number of PPC advertisers and saw response rates rocket by between 40% and 400%.  

Over the next couple of years they developed a more sophisticated model, and today they have nearly 100 copywriters in their training programme and they are writing PPC ads for some of the UK’s biggest companies.

As well as being used by the country’s biggest advertisers, PPC’s  are also used by thousands of small businesses – they too can use the Copy4Clicks service which it costs just £100.

Advertisers complete a simple briefing form and can be running fully Ad Text Optimized ads within 24 hours.  “No phone calls, no meetings, it only takes a few clicks,” says Paul Booth.

The timing is spot on.  The Advertising Standards Authority has extended its remit to cover PPC advertising, which means every business running PPC ads has to ensure the words they use comply with ASA regulations.

As Bob Maddams concludes, “Search pages are battle grounds.  You’re surrounded by your competitors.  Everyone is fighting to get that all important click, and the only weapon at your disposal is the quality of your written ad”

In the exciting new age of paid search, which is dominated by Silicone valley graduates, it’s a couple of wise guys from middle England who are doing the business.

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