How to Make Google AdWords Work for You

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The asphalt business is known for being stuck in the old ways of marketing. Many companies are still going door to door, hitting the newspapers, and relying on the phone book to generate leads.

Although some of these strategies may work, why not spend your advertising money on a system that actually focuses on people that are searching in your area of service? When you are relying on the hard paper versions of advertising, you may be marketing towards an older group of people or simply hoping that someone runs across your ad and considers it as a possibility of something they want done to their home or business.

Along with these old-school techniques comes direct mailers, which can be a great form of advertising as well; however, you are banking on possibly finding someone that wants that service done. These forms of advertisement only lead to chance and possibly getting lucky with who sees your service ads.

Fortunately, Google takes the chance out of marketing for asphalt companies.

Google is the best form of advertising to date and presents an astounding opportunity for companies to gain clientele. In today’s society, most people rely on Google as their primary search engine for all of their needs, so why spend countless dollars on other services when people are already using this platform so regularly? Moreover, this form of advertising specifically targets the people in your service area via Google.

How to Set Up Google AdWords

Advertising on Google starts by setting up a Google AdWords campaign.  AdWords, otherwise known as pay per click (PPC), involves a company advertising at the top of Google to become the number one result for the search terms that the asphalt company wants to advertise for. However, the AdWords program is a very complex program and if not done correctly, a company can spend hundreds or thousands of dollars and not generate a high return on their investment.

When setting up an AdWords campaign, a pavement maintenance company needs to zone in on the keywords that the consumer will search for in order to find their pavement maintenance company – and be specific with these keywords. A keyword in this instance would be a service that the pavement maintenance contractor offers.

For example, if you are a contractor that paves driveways and parking lots, your keywords may include the following: asphalt driveways, asphalt parking lots, asphalt repair, asphalt sealcoating, asphalt line striping, asphalt companies, asphalt contractors, and pothole repair.

When utilizing these keywords correctly on Google, you want your ad to show up at the top spot on Google for the chosen keywords. To visualize how this works, think of the top paid spot on Google as an auction. To get the top spot, you have to bid against your competitor for what you are willing to pay for that click (PPC). For instance, if your competitor is willing to spend $5 a click for the keywords of “asphalt contractor near me,” then you need to be willing to spend $6 per click in order to beat out your competitor for the top spot. However, you will only spend one penny more than what your nearest competitor is willing to spend.

In some cases your competition may be willing to spend $19 per click and in return you might have to spend $20 per click in order to get that top spot. Although that might seem like a high amount per click, as a company it can be extremely beneficial. That one click could be a phone call for a parking lot for a large business, and if AdWords is done correctly, every click should be a relevant click for your business.

The Value of “Negative” Keywords

To make sure you are taking the chance out of Google and ensuring all of your clicks are relevant to your asphalt business, you need to set up your AdWords campaign with negative keywords as well. A negative keyword is a word or phrase that may be close to your business but you do not necessarily perform that service.

For example, if you are an asphalt paving company, you would want your ad to show up for a Google search that included keywords of “asphalt parking lot repair” or “asphalt paving near me.”

However, you would not want your ad to show up when keywords talked about an “asphalt paver for sale” or an “asphalt plant nearby.” Therefore, you would want to set up negative keywords that may include: “for sale,” “plant,” and “paver.”

By setting up negative keywords for your AdWords campaign, you can make sure your ads are only showing up for relevant searches that the consumer is searching for, which also ensures your advertising dollars are being used to set you up for the most success.

What is a Google Lead Worth?

At this point, you may be wondering how much an asphalt lead is worth to your company. (We are not talking about a lead that is being sold to all of your competitors. Moreover, you do not have to worry about showing up to bid a job and getting outbid at the last second as you leave the jobsite.) We are focusing on a lead that includes the consumer picking up their phone and specifically calling your company, or filling out a lead form on your website where the lead goes directly to your email.

Fortunately, the Google AdWords campaign is set up by what you are willing to spend on a daily budget as a company. This means some companies may be willing to spend $30 per day, while others are willing to spend $500 per day. The more you are willing to spend, the more relevant clicks you will get that will ultimately provide you with more leads throughout the day.

For instance, the average cost per click in a territory for the asphalt industry is $5 per click. If your budget is set to $30 per day, you are only able to get six clicks on your ad that leads the customer directly to your website. If you are willing to spend $200 per day, you are allowing 40 people to view your website. If 20 of the 40 people call your business or fill out a lead generation form, that is potentially 20 leads for the $200 of advertising you spent. So if Google AdWords is done correctly and you are utilizing your budget to the maximum, you can generate a lot of traffic to your website, getting the opportunity to convert multiple leads to sales.

Google is by far the best form of advertising for paving and pavement maintenance companies. When utilizing Google AdWords in the correct way, the amount of money spent on a daily limit is minimal when compared to the number of people that may visit your website, and in turn become a customer.

 If your company does great work and you leave your Google customers happy, referrals and word-of-mouth opinions can increase your sales even further. If you are willing to spend your marketing money on Google AdWords, you are setting up your business for successful leads.

Kenneth Quick is president of Asphalt Lead Generation (, which helps contractors in the asphalt industry improve their lead generation efforts. He can be reached at or by phone: 800-848-9513 or 269-317-6412.

[possible pull quotes]

 If AdWords is done correctly, every click should be a relevant click for your business.


Zone in on the keywords that the consumer will search for – and be specific with these keywords.

If not done correctly, a company can spend hundreds or thousands of dollars on Google AdWords and not generate a high return on their investment.

To take the “chance” out of Google you need to set up negative keywords as well.  


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