How do you manage channel partners bidding on your branded keywords?
For you b2b advertisers, I was wondering if you allow your channel partners (VARs/MSPs) to use your branded keywords (if trademarked) in ad copy.
If you do, do you have a process around bidding on your branded keywords?
I know Adwords allows any advertiser to bid on any keywords, but for those who are working with other partners, how do you manage this relationship?
Let me know what you all think.
Re: How do you manage channel partners bidding on your branded keyword
Our client all, universally, prohibit (and they monitor aggressively), brand bidding. This is especially true for affiliates but is slightly different for resellers.
In the latter case, there's explicit guidelines and it's different for each brand. In most cases, the basics are the same. The partner cannot appear higher in the PAID search results for their brand term, the partner cannot direct link, the partner cannot show their price in the ad and the partner cannot use extensions.
Even this small set of requirements is usually enough to force the partner out of the auction. It's going to differ depending on what the relationship is and it's going to be different for every brand/partner. It all comes back to what level of benefit the brand is willing to lend to the partner to help them succeed. Most brand managers will agree that if the partner is not providing enough of their own value-add then they should not be "stealing" brand equity "already paid for". Hope that makes sense.