For three years we’ve met virtually, learned online, and participated in interactive breakout sessions that “sort of” allowed us to learn from one another’s experiences with Google.
Finally, Google Marketing Live 2022 #GML2022 brought a select group of marketers together in person at the brand-new Bay View Campus, along with a global livestream that allowed thousands more to tune in worldwide.
StubGroup was honored to be one of the premier agencies invited by Google to come onsite and join around 800 other attendees to enjoy keynotes from speakers including Jerry Dischler, Vice President and General Manager of Ads at Google, Jon Gieselman, President of Expedia Brands, and Lori Coulter, Co-Founder and CEO of Summersalt.
Google addressed marketers’ feedback about automation and the need to clearly align advertising performance with business goals, while also providing insight into the datapoints and strategies that drive Google’s automation and how advertisers can best harness that power.
Whether it’s the new uber-visual ad formats on Search, or tools to better measure campaign impact through Performance Max Insights and A/B testing, Google says they want to give advertisers and agencies a better understanding of campaign performance and optimization to help them drive the results they’re looking for.
Here are a few highlights of what’s next in all things Google.
If you aren’t already testing PMax campaigns, it’s time to grab the bull by the horns. Performance Max Campaigns already give you the ability to advertise across all of Google’s properties from a single campaign, but Google is expanding their capabilities even further.
Burst Campaigns & In-Store Goals
These two options are currently only available in beta in Local campaigns, but Google announced that they will soon roll out to Performance Max campaigns. With In-Store Goals you can optimize your campaigns to drive physical traffic to your store locations, and use Burst Campaigns in conjunction with seasonal sales or new releases to hit retail goals.
Performance Max is also complementary to existing campaign types, and currently has Experiment tools in beta for campaigns that don’t have a product feed. Basically, when you choose to add on a PMax campaign ala carte, you can measure the aggregated improvements in ad performance. Google expects to fully launch experiment tools by the end of 2022.
Instead of spending hours cross-referencing data through scattered reports, you’ll now be able to pinpoint exactly why you’re seeing changes in performance from directly within the Google Ads interface. Supporting the push for transparency in automation, Google says they hope the Explanations feature will give marketers more insight into what their automation is doing.
Optimization Score and Recommendations
Performance Max campaigns will also soon receive Optimization Score and Google Ads Recommendations options. As with other recommendations that we’ve seen from Google in the past, PMax campaigns will recommend optimizations marketers can make for budgets, asset groups, targeting, and goals, along with other things like trends, impression share, and volume.
Shop ‘Til You Drop — Online
Google made it very clear that more people are shopping online than ever (like we didn’t already know that), but the key feature they are capitalizing on is bringing the experience of in-store shopping to an online store.
There are a few ways that Google plans to help retailers provide an inspiring shopping experience.
Images and Video on YouTube Shorts and Search
Just like a great smoothie, the blended shopping experience is something that can only be described as delicious. We’ve all been there, watching a show, noticing that cute sweater your favorite character is wearing, and wishing you had one just like it. Now, Google will help retailers meet their market at the exact moment they think of making a purchase by “turning an entertainment moment into a shopping moment.” The integration of product feeds into YouTube Shorts and Search is coming soon, giving retailers a new, fluid, digital storefront, full of plenty of carpe diem moments for shoppers.
Checkout on Merchant
What’s already starting on Shopify and Walmart will soon be available to every retailer. A fast, streamlined shopping experience that allows customers to purchase a product directly from an ad — an ad that will bring them to the checkout page on the retailer’s site. Watch out for this new experience coming soon!
Combining Organic search results with rich, creative shopping ads will create a “powerful, swipeable, visual feed” according to Google. This new shopping experience will be launching just in time for the holidays.
In the coming months, consumers will be able to not only view 3D models of products in Search results, but will also be able to virtually “test drive” them in their own spaces.
While Google professed that nothing is going to replace seeing an actual product in person or bringing it home to try it out, the implementation of Augmented Reality (AR) on cameras is about as close as we can get.
Google Business Messages
At StubGroup, we offer all of our prospective clients a free evaluation of their current advertising campaigns. Time and time again we see retailers and lead generation businesses with websites that don’t have chat functionality and we consistently recommend that they prioritize adding one. Why? Because the faster you can connect with a consumer that has a question, the more likely you are to sell your product or service to them.
Launching in 2022, Google Business Messages will allow you to give your customers the option to message your business directly from Search ads.
The Short Story of YouTube
With more than 30 billion daily views, YouTube shorts is gaining four times as many views as they did a year ago. Boasting unexpected inspiration, Google will be debuting this new ad type in 2022.
Understanding campaign performance from top to bottom has consistently been an issue for marketers. Now, with new Insights and other reporting tools, you’ll have the ability to learn more about what’s working, what you need to change, and how to get there.
Search & Conversion Lift Tests
Ever wonder if your YouTube campaigns are impacting Organic searches on Google and YouTube? By implementing Search Lift tests, you can find out.
A New Kind of Reporting
One big addition to data analytics will come through the addition of on-device conversion measurement, giving you the ability to directly see how both your converted and qualified leads are performing.
Along with these highlights, Google also announced the addition of the use of Accessible Marketing, Loyalty Benefits on Google, the Asset library, Automatically-created assets, Optimization score for every campaign type, My Ad Center, and an overall focus on Privacy-safe advertising.
Throughout the entire conference, one theme really stood out: How do we reach audiences in a privacy-respected online environment and create impactful advertising that motivates and inspires?
It all goes back to the user experience. Somewhere along the path towards the digital revolution that we are all a part of, we seem to have forgotten about what the actual consumer wants and needs.
Sarah Harden, CEO of Hello Sunshine, discussed the importance of “right place, right time” marketing strategies, and Malcolm Gladwell stressed the importance of continuing to create shared stories that resonate across multiple, diverse audiences. That, combined with the new opportunities in automation, delivery, and reporting that Google is rolling out over the remainder of this year will serve as the building blocks of a new, more tailored user experience on Google Ads that will ultimately drive more revenue for marketers.
Becky Bugger, Director of Business Development & Sales at StubGroup at the Google HQ — Bay View Event Center in Mountain View, California.