mike tysonOne of the big selling points that Google give to potential AdWords advertisers is how their platform "levels the playing field" and allows small and medium businesses to compete with the big boys.

And this is true.

You can set up your ad campaign, select your keywords, set a bid and enter your credit card details and away you go... someone searches for "blue widgets" and your ad appears right next to the ad from Big Blue Widget Corporation. So, yes, you are competing with them and Google has levelled the playing field. Or have they?

The truth is, they haven't.

What they have actually done is allow you to get in the ring with Mike Tyson. You have your baggy boxing shorts on and a pair of what feel like very oversized gloves.

Mike, on the other hand, is dressed in body armour, has a broadsword, a baseball bat, brass knuckles and boots straight from an episode of Sons of Anarchy. Oh, and he's trained to use all of them.

How do you feel now? Is the field still level or is it starting to slope just a little away from you?

The fact that Google lets you get into the ring with Mike doesn't make things either even or fair. He can crush you. And he will. With AdWords the savvy advertisers have bigger budgets and departments or agencies that run their campaigns. They have tools at their disposal that make their bidding more efficient and they are using parts of the platform which you simply know nothing about... dynamic remarketing, structured snippet extensions, scripts.... what mystical magic is this?

So how do you, a mere David, take on the Goliath that is big business? Well, by picking your fight - that's how. Don't go head to head, avoid the direct battles. You're not going to beat the big boys at their own game, so you need to play yours. Whilst they are looking at the big picture and running their campaigns to the broad numbers, you can look at the outliers and the personal approach that they simply cannot develop.

Remember, David didn't beat Goliath in hand to hand combat - he beat him by keeping out of the big man's range and picking him off with a slingshot. Don't even think about getting within Mike's range.