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Google Branches Programmatic Into Other Ad Media In 2016

Date: January 12, 2016

Expect Google engineers to experiment with new programmatic capabilities in 2016.

Expect Google engineers to experiment with new programmatic capabilities in 2016. That's the word from Joshua Spanier, marketing director of global media at Google, who wants to focus on geolocation, demographics, and dayparting, which are enabled by programmatic.

Part of the effort will go toward making creative ads that people find much more useful, so they don't block them with ad blockers in browsers, or simply close the browser. It also means pushing the boundaries of programmatic tech beyond the Web to experiment with making real-time ads for the out-of-home OOH media.

Google has run tests for OOH in London and Japan, and Spanier sees a huge opportunity to make more relevant ads within physical spaces.

Programmatic display advertising, along with search, is the key to capitalizing on mobile micro-moments without sacrificing scale, Spanier writes in a post. 

"To support the Google Search App campaign, for instance, we built mobile ads with dynamic content that changed based on the user's location, time of day, and 23 other live data points," Spanier explains.

Google's programmatic strategy in 2015 led some of the best performance, he wrote. "We saw a 12.5% increase in brand lift, as well as 5-times the expansion rates (the ratio of ad expansions to ad impressions) versus industry benchmarks."

I'm not sure why this comes as such a shock to the industry. Machines can typically calculate and act faster than humans. And when programmed correctly they can hit the mark again and again.

Spanier says that Google's search app campaign reached 30% more people three times more frequently, with an approximately 30% lower effective cost-per-thousand impressions (eCPM) compared to the previous year.

Brands like L'Oreal get up to 2,000% return on programmatic ad campaigns.

Programmatic, mobile and desktop will account for $21.55 billion or 67% of the total ad spend in the U.S. for display advertising, estimates eMarketer. The numbers are up from $15.43 billion of the $58.12 billion eMarketer estimates that marketers spent on digital advertising in 2015. Of that $26.15 billion went to display.

It's easy to get lost in the technology, he says, so it's important to pay close attention to the creative. If the creative isn't compelling it won't work.

Tying creatives to keywords in headlines can produce 15% higher click-through rates on average, according to Google. Tying keywords in display URLs produce 8% on average. Keywords in headline and in the first line produce on average 68% positive click-through rate lift.

Writing simple and compelling copy requires marketers to write specific call to actions, focus on one unique selling point, and make use of the characters including the display URL.

Google found that including the brand and company name in the ad can lift the CTRs by 2.4%. Ads with title case capitalization in the keywords in the headline lifted CTRs by 62%.

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