Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Google Marketing Live Day 1 Takeaways

Ok, it's late. I just finished watching the Golden State Warriors destroy the Portland Trail Blazers in Game 1 of the NBA Western Conference playoffs. My mind is still racing from attending today's Google Marketing Live 2019 event. And while my fellow GML attendees enjoy a free concert tonight with Katy Perry, here I am writing about my takeaways from today's product announcements for you, my readers. =)

Google's main themes were focused on:

  • Be responsible - Gee, I wonder why they led with this? Perhaps because of the consumer backlash around online privacy and the threat from regulators to breakup the online duopoly?
  • Be there - Google plans to reach you across its vast ecosystem 
  • Be useful - Google spoke a lot about personalization, understanding user intent, and predictive analytics 

To that end, a lot of the new ad products further exploit machine learning and AI to automate things from bidding to optimizing placements to even creative development. Google is also expanding ads across more of its properties, even Google Images. I suspect Pinterest's success has inspired Google to try to monetize its Google Images site. And there was lots of talk about using all it knows about users and users intent to anticipate their needs...while protecting user privacy.

If you're an e-commerce retailer, there were some exciting announcements from Google. Here's a few that caught my eye.


As a long time Android and Google user, I never noticed the Discover button on the home page of the Google app or Google.com. But apparently lots of people do as Google claims 800 million people use it monthly! So, naturally, Google is going to try to monetize those eye balls and Discovery Ads aim to do that. Discovery Ads are essentially mobile-first native ads that appear in multiple Google properties with feeds: Google home page feed, Youtube home page feed, and Gmail. (Not sure how Discovery Ads in Gmail will conflict with regular Gmail Ad buys though. And I suspect Discovery Ads reporting won't be too transparent with reporting by placement like with Google Smart Shopping. We're just asked to trust the black box algorithm to automate things for us.)


These large, visual ads have been around for a few years and drive user engagement on mobile. I've seen success with these with my retail clients. So when Google announced Showcase Shopping Ads will expand to Google Images, Discover feed, and YouTube feed, lots of people got excited naturally.


It's frustrating when my mobile ads drive users to my mobile web site, even when my customers have our app downloaded on their phones. So it was huge news when Google announced Search, Shopping and Display campaigns will now link users directly into the mobile app. In its tests, Google saw 2X conversion rate lift. No surprise! Google also announced improved mobile app reporting if you also use Google Analytics for Firebase.


Google has redesigned the Google Shopping site experience to be more personalized and centered around the customer journey. And it will prominently focus on driving sales for advertisers by encouraging users to either (1) buy directly on an advertiser's e-commerce site, (2) go to a local store, or (3) buy directly on Google leveraging Google Express.

Also, as part of their Shopping Actions Program, this shopping experience will also extend to Google.com, Google Assistant, YouTube, and Google Imagesto  allow users to buy directly from these Google properties!

Alright time to call it a night. Unlike Katy Perry, I am no longer "Wide Awake." If you want to learn more, check out the Google Ads blog.


No comments:

Post a Comment