Saturday, August 20, 2011

Google Ad Innovations @ SES San Francisco Live

The Google Ad Innovations session at the Search Engine Strategies SES Conference this week was a stellar example of why going to SES is so valuable for web marketing professionals. Here was a rare opportunity to hear directly from Google personnel about what's new and what's coming in Google ad marketing. 

Google Adwords at SES San Francisco 2011.
 The Google team:
Dan Friedman - Google New Ad Formats
Bill Kee - Google Analytics
Alexandra Kenin - Google Optimization

Here is a short outline of what they shared:

1. Google Search Overview:
a. Ad Innovations Resource:
Excellent source for new information and updates at:

b. "Search is becoming more Visual, Local and Personalized" - - with all that implies for how Google will continue to evolve search engine results (SERPs) in the coming year. 
c. Google's ongoing mission is to continue to improve SERPs, and made searching more easy, relevant and intelligent.

2. Adwords Automation Rules:
a. Extended automation rules - schedule automatic changes to criteria you specify - free your time up.
b. Opportunities Tab - - optimization ideas can help customize your account and goals.
c. New Display feature - - Interest Categories. Activate 'Audiences Tab' - - there are over 100 categories. Over 500 million daily users are categorized in some manner.

3. New Google Ad Formats:
a. Make your Ad relevant. (What else would you expect from Google! LOL)
b. Ads are evolving at Google as the web evolves: "1/3 of Google ads are served in new formats." 

c. Ad Sitelinks create lift. 3 Line sitelinks bring a 40% CTR lift. 1 line sitelinks a 17% CTR lift.
Related update: Google's New 'Sitelink' Search Dominates Results - PC World, Aug 16, 2011.

d. Ad sitelinks help your visitors navigate to your site pages faster and more efficiently.
e. Sub-category links allow for faster drill-down. Mobile ads can benefit from a 30% lift in CTR.
f. Product Ads: Ad Block of Product Listing Ads give 100% CTR Lift. Text ads with product extensions give a 6% CTR lift.
g. For ecommerce sites, Google Merchant Center links with your ad account. Commission based platform.
h. Google Media Ads: Combines Brand advertising with the 'Intent of Search'. Good for video, TV, entertainment, etc.

4. Local & Phone:
a. Click to Call Features: Mobile devices. Phone extensions. Adding phone number helps conversion.

b. "Vanity Phone Numbers can now be added." Example: 1-800-Flowers
c. Call Only creative available. Not a click-to-call. Helps to segment channels if needed.
d. Hyperlocal Ads: Increases phone call rate, reduces CPC.
e. Product Local Ads: Show in-store inventories

5. Adwords Experiments: 
a. Adwords Campaign Experiments: Now in Opportunities Tab.
b. "Test Smart" - Test keywords, Bids, Ads, Ad Groups, Ad Creatives, Placements, Remarking Lists.
c. Run experiments on keyword and bid ideas.

6. Google Analytics: More data on funnel behavior and Social Media coming.
a. Most leads require 3 to 5 'touches' before conversion occurs. There is a need to better understand this process using analytics.
b. Multichannel Funnels built on goals and ecommerce. A set of 5 reports now available, providing an understanding of the path towards conversion. 
c. The Impact of Social Media Beta: Social Interactions and Source - -"Tracking behavior across channels, including social media."

Whew! My apologies for such a lengthy blog post, but in this short 1 1/2 hour long presentation by Google there was a huge amount of valuable information and updates... this session alone made SES worth attending. There  was something here for experienced search engine marketeers and novices alike. Having Google HQ, along with Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter and other powerful web marketing platforms, just a short drive from the Moscone Center is an prime advantage for SES San Francisco.

Other sources on Google Innovations at SES San Francisco, 2011: