Having just trialled our PPC Ad Lab software, a new user jumped straight in and ran a search to find advertisers in the hypnotherapy market in New Jersey.
Nothing unusual there.
Except the results.
PPC Ad Lab returned advertisers from all over the world - NJ (obviously), California, UK, Australia and more.
"Your data must be wrong" challenged the user in live chat, after all, he and his Ads Manager, believed that the competition in this market was local hypnotherapists.
But how to prove that our data was accurate? After all, every Google search is different, and if I ran the query again using our tools, why would it be any more believable than the first time. If I got the same results, it proved to the user it was wrong. If I got different results, it proved our system was unreliable.
So I needed another approach.
And turned to the Google Ads Preview Tool, and ran each search (for a dozen keywords, in 7 different locations) manually. And repeatedly.
We had found lots of advertisers, but of course the preview only shows a maximum of 5 on any search, so we refreshed. A lot.
After a day of refreshing and searching, we had verified every single one of our results.
UK hypnotherapists were in fact advertising in New Jersey with digital and virtual offerings.
So were the advertisers from Australia and across the US.
The market that this agency thought their struggling client was competing in, was not the market that they thought at all.
Consequently, (and I'm assuming now as I don't know the client name), there messaging and offer was off. That's why the client struggled.
If you don't understand your market and your competition you simply can't compete effectively. Your offer not only has to be great, but it has to make sense, in context of the competition. And not the competitors you THINK you have, but those who you ACTUALLY compete against, in real-time in the Google search results.
For this agency, it's no longer a case of hiding this "unreliable data" from the client, it's about rebuilding the offering with a whole new understanding of their competition.