How to Hire a PPC Manager for Your Marketing Agency

How To Hire A PPC Manager for Your Agency

Pay-per-click (PPC) marketing and advertising is a core element of most agencies’ campaigns and strategies. From eCommerce, to SaaS, to local mom-and-pop shops, nearly every industry and business model can benefit from PPC tactics. 

Whether you're a full-stack agency or you specialize in PPC advertising, hiring PPC managers is an important part of growing your team. But as you begin the hunt for the perfect candidate, you’ll need to answer a few key questions about the role:

  • What will the new hire's tasks and responsibilities be?

  • What skill sets are most important to fulfilling the duties?

  • How can you attract, interview, and hire the best possible PPC manager?

Welcome to our comprehensive guide on how to hire a PPC manager at your agency––with specific tips, strategies, and considerations to make sure you find the best fit for your team.

What Is a PPC Manager?

First and foremost, you want to define the job function of a PPC manager at your agency. Whether this is a new hire or you're replacing a PPC manager who is moving on to greener pastures, clarifying what you expect from this role and what success will look like is essential to not only attracting the right candidates, but setting your new hire up for success. 

PPC specialists or managers might have any combination of the following tasks and responsibilities:

  • Selecting PPC Ad Channels: There are tons of channels you could pursue, and a PPC expert will know whether paid search, social media, on-page, or other options are the best route to achieve your clients' advertising objectives.

  • Developing PPC Campaign Strategies: Outlining the strategic plan for PPC advertising campaigns might include selecting a target audience, conducting keyword research, writing ad copy, and crafting landing pages.

  • Technical Setup of PPC Ads: A PPC manager will use tools like Google Ads, Facebook Ads Manager, Amazon Advertising, and other PPC services provider platforms to set up and launch PPC campaigns.

  • Managing Ad Budgets: PPC managers will plan, manage, and track the spend for PPC ad campaigns, keeping track of the ad budget pacing for each of your digital marketing agency’s clients.

  • Monitoring and Reporting on Performance: Tracking your PPC efforts allows paid advertising specialists to optimize campaigns and improve pay-per-click ad performance.

  • Contributing to the Broader Marketing Strategy: Your PPC expert should work together with digital marketing specialists, search engine marketing specialists, graphic and UX designers, copywriters, and other marketing team members towards collective goals.

Your agency knows it cannot overstate the benefits of working with a go-to expert for all things “paid ads”. They’re the contact point for questions, a beacon of new strategy ideas, and a results-oriented eye to watch over ad spend.

The biggest contributor to our growth is our people.  We bring on smart, driven, and talented individuals who align with our North Star of helping people feel proud, prosperous and connected.

Jessica Weiss, Director of Marketing & Strategic Partnerships, One Firefly

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Day-to-Day Tasks of a PPC Manager

Above, we went over the high-level responsibilities of PPC professionals. But what does that look like day-to-day? Here are some examples of tasks that PPC managers could help your team tick off the to-do list:




Keyword Research 


Identifying and refining keywords for each new client and PPC campaign


Ad Copywriting


Writing compelling ad copy for a client's products or services


Monitoring and Optimization


Adjusting bids, budgets, and settings to improve ad performance


A/B Testing


Testing variations in ad copy or graphics to find the highest-performing combinations


Client Communication


Keeping clients in the loop about progress, performance, and updates.


Tracking PPC Metrics


Checking things like quality score, impressions, click-through rates, cost per click, conversion rates, return on ad spend (ROAS), etc.


Platform Management 


Switching between and prioritizing tools like Google Ads, Microsoft Advertising, Bing Ads, Google Tag Manager, LinkedIn Ads, and Pinterest ads.

Of course, every PPC manager will have slightly different tasks, and priorities will shift over time.

Why Would a Marketing Agency Need a PPC Manager?

If your marketing agency has been operating just fine up until now, it's natural to question whether you really need to hire a PPC manager for your team. You might wonder if you should work with a PPC consultant instead, or whether a more general paid ads specialist would be a better choice. 

The truth is, either of those might be the right move, depending on your goals, context, and direction. To help you make the best decision for your business, consider some of the key benefits of each of these options, outlined in the table below:

Benefits of Hiring a PPC Manager

Benefits of Working with a PPC Consultant

Benefits of Hiring a Paid Ads Generalist

Benefits of Hiring a PPC Manager

Has the full internal context of your business

Benefits of Working with a PPC Consultant

Extensive specialized knowledge and expertise

Benefits of Hiring a Paid Ads Generalist

Can guarantee a consistent workload, regardless of PPC demand

Benefits of Hiring a PPC Manager

Able to work more collaboratively with your team

Benefits of Working with a PPC Consultant

Sometimes more cost-effective than hiring a full-time staff member

Benefits of Hiring a Paid Ads Generalist

Brings a broader perspective and ability to weigh various options

Benefits of Hiring a PPC Manager

Can work on both short and long-term strategies

Benefits of Working with a PPC Consultant

More flexible option if your need for their expertise fluctuates

Benefits of Hiring a Paid Ads Generalist

Can work across multiple projects and clients at once

Benefits of Hiring a PPC Manager

Can work with the same clients long-term, building trust

Benefits of Working with a PPC Consultant

Adds an outside perspective and more objectivity

Benefits of Hiring a Paid Ads Generalist

Can contribute to cross-skill development at your agency

Benefits of Hiring a PPC Manager

Your data (and your clients' data) will remain in-house, mitigating risk

Benefits of Working with a PPC Consultant

Shorter time to value, no need to go through onboarding 

Benefits of Hiring a Paid Ads Generalist

Hire someone more junior at a lower salary and upskill them

Skills Needed for a PPC Manager

Every expertise has a specific, specialized skill set. So when you're hiring a PPC specialist, you want to be well-versed in the skills you're looking for. Here are some of the particular skills to watch for when you hire a PPC expert:

Analytical Skills

PPC managers must excel in data analysis, interpreting metrics, and identifying trends in performance data from their PPC campaigns. They need to be able to use that data to make informed decisions, optimize campaigns, allocate budgets, and maximize the ROI of their PPC ads.

Technical Skills

Technical proficiency directly relates to managing PPC platforms like Google Ads, Microsoft Advertising, Facebook Ads, and the effective use of ad extensions. It can also encompass job-related tasks like keyword research, audience segmentation, bid management, and familiarity with different ad formats and algorithms.

PPC’s first objective is to acquire qualified traffic, but as an agency that provides both PPC and SEO, we also use it for testing and research. Before earning organic ranks for a keyword, we try it out using PPC to test how users searching for it interact with a brand and its products.

Matt Beech, Marketing Director at Patch Marketing 

Creative Skills

PPC managers often need to brainstorm persuasive ad concepts, and typically also write and test ad copy to increase clicks and conversions. Creativity is important for helping client brands stand apart from the competition and ensuring ads resonate with target audiences. This is especially important at an agency, where your reputation is on the line as much as your client's.

Communication Skills

PPC managers need strong communication skills to manage client relationships, collaborate with team members, and connect with internal and external stakeholders. Communication skills also play into their ability to write compelling ad copy, outline PPC campaign performance, and share and receive feedback effectively.

At seoplus+, our people have been the biggest contributors to our remarkable growth. Collaboration is not just a buzzword for us; it's the fundamental principle that guides our operations. We firmly believe that as a unified team, we are greater than the sum of our individual parts, allowing us to deliver outstanding results and drive the success of our clients' businesses.

Alexa Rees, SEO Manager, seoplus+

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How to Write a Job Description to Attract Top Talent

Getting the job description right demonstrates that you understand the role of a PPC manager, and the objectives and challenges of this role at your agency. It's how potential applicants will screen you as an employer, and assess whether your expectations align with theirs. But too often, companies focus more on what they're looking for in a candidate, and less on what candidates might be looking for from them.

Here are some do's and don'ts for writing a job description that stands out to potential hires at your agency:




Don't use ChatGPT to write the whole thing from scratch


Do use ChatGPT for inspiration, drafting, and editing


Don't list 10+ niche requirements and expect to find a unicorn


Do narrow down 3-4 essential skills, and 2-3 nice to haves


Don't list generic tasks that any PPC expert would take as a given


Do have the hiring manager outline specific challenges of the role


Don't go overboard giving a long-winded history of your agency


Do provide some context for your company values, mission, and ethos


Don't create a complicated application form with tons of sections


Do focus on a user-friendly, streamlined application experience

Interview Questions to Help You Identify the Best Candidate

What is your greatest strength? What is your greatest weakness? Snore! Your first job interview called, and it wants its questions back! Listen–coming up with smart, thoughtful questions for your interviewee is tough. So to help you out, we rounded up some good ones that will help you evaluate each candidate's technical, collaborative, and leadership skills:

Technical Skills Questions

  1. Describe your approach to developing a PPC campaign strategy for a new client. What factors would you consider in your initial planning phase?

  2. How do you go about conducting keyword research, determining search intent,  choosing the most effective keywords for a campaign, and making budget recommendations?

  3. What are your strategies for bid management to ensure effective spending and maximize the ROI of PPC ads?

  4. Which ad platforms do you have the most experience with, and how have you used them? Can you tell me about your knowledge of analytics and conversion tracking?

  5. How do you stay in the know of industry trends and changes in PPC algorithms, and adapt your strategies accordingly?

Collaborative Skills Questions

  1. In your experience, what have been the most important factors for successful teamwork?

  2. How do you balance your individual priorities with the priorities of the team, and of the client?

  3. Tell me about a time when you disagreed with a colleague or superior's approach, and how you moved forward.

  4. Tell me about a time when a client was dissatisfied with your work. What did you do to remedy the situation?

  5. What's your approach to giving feedback, and how do you like to receive feedback? Tell me about the role feedback plays for you in your professional development.

Leadership Skills Questions

  1. We don't currently have any PPC experts on the team. How would you share your expertise with your new colleagues, and help them integrate PPC marketing into their campaigns?

  2. How do you take ownership of your responsibilities, goals, and performance?

  3. Tell me about a time when the future or path forward was unclear. How did you go about figuring out the next steps and moving forward?

  4. When work gets challenging or conflicts arise, how do you stay motivated and connected with your team?

  5. Tell me about a time when you made a mistake at work, or you didn't see the desired outcome you'd hoped for. How did you handle the situation?

In the interview, don’t pass up the opportunity to showcase your agency culture and share what’s great about working on your team. If your agency is already working with AgencyAnalytics, emphasize how breezy PPC reporting duties will be! With our platform, your PPC manager will generate in-depth PPC reports in minutes, white labeled to perfection, and customized with our drag-and-drop report editor.

A screenshot of a PPC overview for Google Ads reports in AgencyAnalytics

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The greatest challenge I have faced was trusting others enough to let go. I was always so scared that an employee would jeopardize a client and the house of cards would fall and leave me in the gutter somewhere. They key to overcoming that is hiring people with strengths where you are weak.

Joaby Parker, President, Cover3 Creative

Making an Offer When You Find the Right Person

You've posted your job opening, sifted through applicants, conducted interviews, and checked references. The time has come to hire a PPC manager onto your team–but what's the right way to make the offer? Here are a few tips to help you get it right:

  • Have a Backup Plan: Before you make the offer, know who your second choice is and wait before rejecting them. If you don't have any other viable candidates, have a plan to source a PPC freelancer or agency in case your ideal candidate turns down your offer.

  • Outline the Job Again: Based on the conversations you've had and your understanding of the specific candidate's experience, outline the job description again, incorporating that information.

  • Make a Fair Offer: Know the market rates for PPC experts in your area with the experience and skill set of your candidate. Offer a fair and competitive salary and benefits package.

  • Set Expectations Early: Don't wait until the offer stage to give your candidate an idea of the salary and benefits you're offering. Align early in the process to make sure you're in the same ballpark.

  • Don't Delay: You want to act quickly, because PPC experts are in high demand and you don't want your ideal candidate to get scooped up by another employer who beat you to it.

  • Give Some Wiggle Room: Once you've made your offer, leave some time and space for the candidate to ask questions or negotiate specific details. You can schedule a follow-up call or ask them to get back to you with any clarifications.

When we first started, we knew that we wanted to build an agency that was different from the rest. We wanted to create a place where people were passionate about their work and where they felt valued and supported. We've been really lucky to attract some of the best talent in the industry.

Ben Paine, Managing Director, Digital Nomads HQ

Common Mistakes Companies Make When Hiring a PPC Manager

Finally, when hiring any new employee, it's important to get the process right. Here are a few common pitfalls to look out for when you're hiring a PPC manager to join your agency:

Focusing On Experience More Than Potential

Everybody has a past (employer). Avoid evaluating people too much on what they've done, and not considering what they could do. Ask hypothetical questions as much as you ask for examples, and take into account their ability to generate ideas and solutions.

Looking for a Do-Er Instead of a Thinker

You might simply be looking for someone to handle ad creation and implement your pre-defined PPC strategy. But someone who knows how to dig into Google Analytics, keep up with search engines, and see PPC ads in the broader context of the marketing strategy brings a lot more value.

Hiring for Culture Fit 

Of course, you want someone who aligns with your company values and will contribute positively to the team. But be mindful of the difference between a culture 'fit' and a culture 'add'. Fresh perspectives and personalities help your team take their campaigns to the next level, so don't pass on a candidate just because they're a bit different.

When you're building a company, you don't want to hire all the same types of people. Just like in a recipe you need different ingredients to make a dish shine. The biggest challenge was people. Not just finding the right people, but ensuring that we had the right mix of people and then supporting their individual needs while staying focused on the company as a whole.

Yanira M. Castro, CEO, Humanity Communications Collective 

Ignoring Soft Skills 

At a marketing agency, you need to have team players. Too much ego or an inability to compromise can render even the most technically skilled candidates less valuable. Assess how people communicate, collaborate, take the lead, approach challenges, and address conflict. These are just as important as hard skills.

Expecting a One-Person PPC Agency 

Remember that your new hire is just one person. If your PPC strategy is beyond what one PPC expert can handle, consider whether you need to hire more than one specialist. It's important that you set up your PPC manager for success, and avoid overloading them or setting unrealistic expectations.

We place a huge emphasis on people and relationships. What's allowed us to grow is our unique hiring process that finds the absolute best folks to help us grow our revenue and demonstrate our expertise. We attract high-quality talent by offering competitive salaries, great personal and professional advancement opportunities, and amazing benefits.

Graham Lumley, Director of Marketing, Blackhawk Digital Marketing

A Team Is More Than the Sum of Its Parts

Building a high-performing team is no easy task. You need to take into account each person's unique skill set, their collaboration style, and the common goals everyone can align around. Hiring a PPC specialist means considering how they'll fit into the broader team, and how they'll contribute to your agency's goals.

Scaling a business is no easy undertaking. In order to be successful, a company must have a solid plan in place that accounts for every aspect of growth, from managing resources and hiring new employees to expanding into new markets and opening new branches. But perhaps most importantly, scaling a business requires time. When half of your business is losing time performing mundane tasks instead of working in productive ways, we effectively cap our expansion by slowing down how quickly things get done.

Ruben Roel, President & Founder, Investigator Marketing

It's important to take the time to clearly scope out the role you're trying to fill. Be specific about the objectives, expectations, and direction for the PPC manager before you go out headhunting. This is the best way to set yourself–and your new team member–up for success.

When it comes to measuring success, clear and consolidated data is super important to have. The AgencyAnalytics PPC dashboard helps you track the performance of your pay-per-click ads with real-time metrics from more than 80 marketing integrations including Google Ads, Bing Ads, Facebook Ads, and more. Sign up for our free 14-day trial today.

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Written by

Kyra Evans

Kyra Evans is the Senior Content Marketing Manager at AgencyAnalytics. She has over 15 years of experience writing content for SaaS, tech, and finance brands. Her work has been featured by HuffPost and CBC, and she serves an engaged social media readership of over 30,000 community members.

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