Take a look at the two ads below. Both used the same URL, but the titles and body copy are significantly different. If you were searching for “horror movies,” which ads would win your click?


PPC Ad #1

Horror Movies - Ad #1
PPC Ad #2

Horror Movies - Ad #2


Ad #2 is the winner of this contest. Written by “ctr_guru,” it increased CTR by 115%. Let’s take a look as to why the new ad attracted more than twice as many clicks as the original ad.


The Original Ad

First and foremost, the title copy of the original ad is fairly vague. “Horror Movies” lacks specificity. Consider the action that the ad asks the searcher to take. Are they going to be able to watch horror movies when they click this ad? Or read reviews about horror movies? Or learn how to make horror movies? The intention is unclear.

Although it often beneficial to use current lingo and sayings in PPC ads, slang is usually not a good idea unless it is abundantly clear what you’re trying to communicate. The first line of body copy in the losing ad says, “Top Rated, Top Faved Movies.” The word “Faved” is slang for “Favored,” but it looks strange and causes the searcher to hesitate. The searcher then has to work to understand what the ad is trying to say. Not to mention, “Top Rated, Top Faved” is painfully redundant.

The losing ad also has a sort of split personality. The first part of the ad talks about horror movies. But the second part of the ad talks about a “Horror Fans Community.” Which is it? This lack of consistency causes confusion and hesitation. People searching for “horror movies” may not have any interest in a community for horror fans. They may just want a list of the best horror movies, which the winning ad clearly promises. Very few searchers are going to take the time to figure out a poorly worded ad, and will quickly move on to the next one. This ad misses out on capturing a very marketable moment.


The Boost Creative Network Ad

The new ad improves the title copy by making it more specific. The searcher now knows, at first glance, that if they click, they’ll get a “List Of Top Horror Movies.” Removing uncertainty from PPC ads is a critical step in improving CTR and conversions, and that’s exactly what the winning ad accomplishes here.

This ad clearly describes what the searcher will see when they click on the ad; “See Newest Horror Film Releases & Get Lists Of Top Horror Films.” There is no ambiguity. Importantly, the title copy and body copy are consistent with one another.

The winning ad also creates a sense of urgency by using the word “Now!” Usually we see that the use of an exclamation point at the end of the first or second line of body copy tends to beat ads without. In contrast, the losing ad doesn’t use any punctuation at all, creating a run-on sentence between line 1 and 2 of the ad — usually not something you want to do unless you’ve maxed out your characters.


In the End

The new ad wins because it is more specific, more urgent and more clearly written. The searcher knows exactly what they’re going to get when they click. These three concepts of clarity, specificity and urgency are vital for writing effective PPC ads, and they are all present in the winning ad above.


About Boost Media

Boost Media increases advertiser profitability by using a combination of humans and a proprietary software platform to drive increased ad relevance at scale.

The Boost marketplace comprises over 1,000 expert copywriters and image optimizers who compete to provide a diverse array of perspectives. Boost’s proprietary software identifies opportunities for creative optimization and drives performance using a combination of workflow tools and algorithms. Headquartered in San Francisco, the Boost Media optimization platform provides fresh, performance-driven creative in 12 localized languages worldwide.