Google’s Marketing Live event this year was full with news and announcements, the tech giant made it clear that some of their big focuses right now include YouTube and machine learning, the latter of which is leading to some intriguing innovations in the world of advertising. From AI-built landing pages, to more options for video ads, and everything in between, here’s our rundown of some of the changes Google announced at their event earlier this month.
#1: Opt out of seeing personalised ads
This particular change is actually better for Google and how users perceive the company’s stance on privacy. Users can now opt out of advertisement personalisation and stop being served ads that are relevant to their interests. It’s a smart move by Google to make them appear more trustworthy and focused on user experience by giving their users choice.
#2: YouTube is a big focus this year
There was news for those of you wanting to improve how you target those billions of YouTube users out there. First, Google are rolling out lead-gen ads on the video platform, which means advertisers can get all the info they need without redirecting the user to another website. And then there’s Maximise Lift, a smart bidding strategy coming later this year that will let advertisers optimise their campaigns for users more likely to make a purchase after viewing an ad.
#3: AdWords becomes Google Ads
We may have mentioned this one in our June Digital Roundup, but it’s worth repeating: AdWords is now a thing of the past, and it’s time for everyone to get used to saying “Google Ads”. With the addition of “Google Ad Manager” and “Google Marketing Platform” plus the rebranding of Doubleclick it looks like Google is giving its platforms a refresh. They all still work the same so at this point it’s purely cosmetic.
#4: You can now test your mobile pagespeed in Google Ads!
Speaking of Google Ads, you should probably head over to the Landing Pages section to try out the latest way to understand your landing page’s mobile performance. The tool provides you with a score ranging from 1 (very slow) to 10 (extremely fast), plus gives details of the pages Mobile-friendly click rate and Valid AMP click rate.
#5: Need a landing page? Google has you covered!
No website? No problem, because Google are testing its machine-learning capabilities by providing business owners with an opportunity to build “auto-optimised landing pages.” Basically, the information from your product or service will be pulled directly from your paid ad into the new program, which will then churn out pages with built-in conversion reporting and tracking. It seems this will only be available in Smart Campaigns which Google is rolling out to target small businesses.
#6: Shopping has just got Smarter!
Google are also using their machine learning tech to help advertisers improve conversion rates through Smart Shopping, which was previously announced this past May. The feature allows advertisers to now choose store visits and new customers as goals, and then Smart Shopping automatically handles the remainder of the process. From making bid adjustments to picking the right product to display, machine learning will take care of it. It’s worth noting that this feature is integrated into Shopify, with other leading ecommerce platforms to follow.
#7: “Near me” searches get a new campaign type
Machine learning isn’t just for ecommerce, though, because Google are interested in driving people to brick-and-mortar stores with their new “Local” ad campaign. Of course, this makes perfect sense given that 1) mobile “near me” searches continue to grow and 2) around 90 percent of purchases still happen offline. Basically, once a budget is set, ads are automatically generated and placed—based on an advertiser’s creative and other relevant input—across Google’s products (think YouTube, Search, Maps, etc.).
#8: Responsive search ads are coming!
Google’s latest ad type, Responsive search ads, will finally be available for use in the next few months following their reveal this past May. These ads are served and placed based on Google’s algorithm, which follows user intent and the copy written by the advertiser. And to make them more enticing to use, Google are offering up more advertising real estate for those who go Responsive: up to 90 characters (instead of 80) in two descriptions (instead of one), and up to three headlines (instead of two).
From major advancements in machine learning down to a growing focus on YouTube and everything in between, this year’s Google Marketing Live was brimming with activity and potentially big changes for the digital marketing world. While it’s not quite clear how exactly these changes will affect the industry in 2018, keep an eye out for more insights and updates on everything covered here (and much more) on the Ayima blog.
Watch the full live stream here: