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SMX West 2018: Interview with SEMCopilot

This interview is part of our SMX West expert interview series taking place between March 12th and 16th, 2018.

The wonderful world of SMX brings together sponsors, speakers, and platforms from all across the digital marketing ecosystem for three magical days. This year, we had the pleasure of interviewing a handful of these experts to get their inside scoop on the hottest SEM trends.

One of the SMX West 2018 speakers was Ted Ives, founder and CEO of SEMCopilot. Ted stopped by to discuss his contribution to the paid search track at SMX this year, as well as how his tool helps PPC account managers find success and deliver better results.

Ted shared his paid search knowledge with the world in two talks at the conference this year. The first, ‘How to Maximize and Measure Performance on the Google Display Network‘, focused on three steps towards success on the GDN:

smx insights ted ives

The second talk, ‘Survey of the SEM Tools Landscape‘, profiled some useful tools for SEM marketers, including Unbounce, Google Tag Manager, Call Rail, SEMCopilot and more.

Check out what Ted had to say about his experience at SMX this year and the importance of the right toolkit for paid search marketers:



Chandal: Hi everyone, I’m here at SMX 2018 with Ted Ives from SEMCopilot. Thanks for joining us today for a few minutes.

Ted: Happy to be here!

Chandal: Happy we could have you! So, tell us, what brings you to SMX West 2018 this year?

Ted: Well, I like meeting everybody and finding out what I’m doing wrong, so that’s my main reason to be here! I’m speaking tomorrow in back-to-back talks on a couple of topics. One is ‘How to Optimize Ads on the Google Display Network’ about display ads, the other is sort of an SEM tools overview.

Chandal: Very cool. Is it too bold if I ask you about your SEM toolbox?

Ted: The tools I’ll be running over tomorrow, and then I’ll maybe talk about my own, is sort of the whole space – I’ve got a taxonomy I mapped out where I see everybody fitting in a different category, and I’m going to run over a lot of free tools. Everybody has their own favorite free tools.

SEMCopilot is a decision support tool really, to help you be a better account manager and make the right decisions to figure out what you’re doing. Probably its biggest claim to fame is that we take individual words in the search queries and search query report and we categorize them into commercial terms, negative terms, geographic terms, and brand terms. You thumb up and thumb down words, and if you’re very good at it and diligent you can thumb up and thumb down and checkmark all of them. You can pull up negative lists, you can apply them to your AdWords account later and all that. But the next month when you go in, you can see everything you’ve done. “I’ve already looked at these words. Oh I’ll just look at the new ones. These are all the new words that came up this month.” So it makes it a lot easier to keep your search query report squeaky clean and drive out as much waste as possible.

Chandal: I guess that helps reduce redundancies for keyword research ongoing in campaign optimization.

Ted: The funny thing is is that I do a lot of keyword research. Often, what I’ve found is buried in the long tail data you bring in a lot of phrases anyway. People don’t really look at their own data which is why we let you thumb up things as positives, not just as negatives. An example would be, maybe ‘rent a shipping container’. You’re bidding on ‘rent a shipping container’ but you have a lot of match types and things going on and maybe the word ‘lease’ happens to come up. If you get one impression, one click on ‘lease’ and you can surface that – hey there’s a whole new keyword you should go after that maybe didn’t come up in the initial keyword research.

Chandal: That’s really great advice for anyone if they’re looking to optimize their search queries and their SEM campaigns and we definitely encourage you to give SEMCopilot a try. Thanks very much for joining us, we really appreciate it.

Ted: Thanks for having me.


Stay tuned for more coverage of SMX West to come!


Image Credits

Feature Image: Unsplash/Alexander Dummer

Video property of Acquisio by

Chandal Nolasco Da Silva

Chandal Nolasco Da Silva

With nearly a decade of digital marketing experience, Chandal has created content strategies for both the biggest and sometimes the most unexpected markets, while developing strategic relationships with editors and publishers. Chandal contributes to some of the highest authority industry publications, has been featured in industry events and is thrilled to be Acquisio’s Content Director.

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