This month, we had Simon and Charles from ConnectAd come in and talk to us about Google Grants, which offers pay-per-click (PPC) advertising grant programs for non-profits and charities. The guys covered the basics of PPC during their time with us, and gave tips and ideas on how to improve your Google Grant application.PPC Advertising-Why do it?
PPC advertising are often those plain text advertisements that show up when you search popular search engines such as Google, Bing, or Yahoo! They look similar to website listings, and will often take you to a website that is selling or advertising something related to your search query. PPC uses keywords to displays advertisements that are related to search queries. There are three good reasons to use PPC advertising:
- Awareness: To increase people's knowledge of your organization
- Volunteers: To ask people to volunteer with you
- Donations: To increase online donations
All of these things are the daily activities of a non-profit organization, so you can use PPC advertising to do the majority of the work of finding people for you through online search engines.Google Grants
Google Grants is a grant system that gives your organization up to $10,000 a month (sometimes more) of credit in PPC advertising. The program will last as long as you continue to manage the service and use it. Google Grants is a volunteer-run program by Google employees.How to Apply
Simon and Charles told us that the process takes between 2-4 hours to complete an application and the approval process can be anywhere from four to six months. Because Google Grants is volunteer-run, there's always a backlog of applications. The good news is that once you've been approved, and have shown Google that you can properly manage a PPC campaign, the power is in your hands to create a campaign that meets your needs.Managing Your Google Grant:
Once you've been approved, you need to actively manage your use of keywords in your PPC campaign. You can expect to need a minimum of 1-2 hours to keep your grant active. Managing your account and grant regularly is very important. Google monitors whether you are using your campaign, and they'll deactivate your campaign if it's not being used. Gay the Online Community Manager from People for Education came along to explain to us how their grant process went and what issues they had and how they resolved them. Gay noted that online giving is going up, and having your organization tap into a large advertising grant like Google Grants can ramp up your online presence.
The biggest challenge she found was that given the application process, it was really important to set timelines and have someone responsible for completing the application process in a timely manner, especially if there was a need to reapply. You can find more information about Google Grants at http://www.google.ca/intl/en/grants/.
Presentation slides and links to resources are available along with the recording of a webinar on the same topic.