Our PPC managers don’t just sit comfortably at their desks. They’re on the go quite often, which is why having an AdWords mobile app available to both major mobile devices is great news. Once, the AdWords app was only available to Android users, but recently it became available to iPhone users, too.

The AdWords app can’t handle every bit of campaign management, of course. There are just some things the PC portal is better at, especially for our guys, who manage several accounts every single day. But our clients are already telling us that it’s nice to know they can call and get an update no matter where their campaign managers might be. In fact, providing up-to-the-minute reporting is one of this app’s strongest features.

Making changes with the AdWords app: The AdWords mobile app does give account managers the power to make some changes—it’s not all about reporting. For example, if you need to order an emergency campaign stop because your website has gone down, the app does make it relatively easy to do this. Small budget updates are easy, too…in fact, Google will suggest them, giving you the option of taking the suggestions or passing on them just by touching the “Yes” or “No” option that pops up on your screen. Bigger changes should probably wait until the ad manager makes it back to the office. The AdWords app is great for small, quick adjustments, but we’re not necessarily going to want to fiddle with headlines, change ad copy or attempt to run A/B tests on it. It’s just not set up for that kind of in-depth ad management work, especially for managers who are working with multiple accounts. Such changes would be problematic, if not impossible, even for the DIY entrepreneurs attempting to manage even a single account from their phones.

Why do account managers need an app? Why not just use your phone’s browser? While it’s always been possible to manipulate AdWords from a phone’s browser, it’s never been a good idea. It’s just too easy to make mistakes, because using AdWords on the phone’s browser is a messy, clunky way to go about making changes. Cameron Fenno, one of our campaign managers here at Fair Marketing, describes it as “a terrible experience that I never want to have to repeat.” He went on to say that this mobile app was “desperately needed.” In the past, account managers probably wouldn’t have brought up the phone browser as an option. They just would have waited to get back to a PC rather than risking errors in a campaign.

What kind of information does the reporting feature have to offer? The reporting feature gives us access to just about any information a client might need to hear about. This includes cost-per-click, impressions, clicks, and click through rates. Analytic info is also available, allowing our account managers to make some solid suggestions, ensuring PPC campaigns continue to perform at their full potential.

Google at Our Fingertips The AdWords app offers one final feature that makes it exceedingly useful: the ability to call Google reps directly. These reps are always willing to answer questions. They’re also capable of sorting out any technical problems the ad manager might have. We don’t have to call the Google team often, but it’s nice to have them at the touch of a button just in case we need them. In short, the AdWords app for iOS is just another way marketing technology has evolved to make it easier to serve you better. The Fair Marketing team is committed to serving its clients, which is why we watch innovations like this so closely.

Sources:
http://adwords.blogspot.com/2016/01/introducing-adwords-app-for-ios.html?

Life Before Sidebar Ad Removal


To understand the opportunity, let’s take a look at what PPC advertising looked like when the right-hand side of the SERPs page was still full of ads. In those days, you theoretically had 10 positions to choose from. Positions 1-3 appeared at the top of the page, and positions 4-10 appeared on the right hand side.


Positions 1-3 were always the best positions to pursue, especially once Google began making ad results look more and more like organic search results. Back when those ads were enclosed by a big yellow "warning box" they were easy to ignore. Today, you’ll find a tiny, barely noticeable "Ad" tag next to those results. Obviously, as a result, these positions get plenty of visibility as many busy people fail to notice they’re looking at an advertisement at all, resulting in better click-through rates and more revenue for those who happened to make it into the top spots.


However, positions 1-3 did require some of the biggest bids, so there was another school of thought in the PPC world, one that said you could bid less and get great results on the top 3 sidebar ads (formerly positions 4, 5, and 6) by developing super-creative, super-relevant ads. As a result, these positions are getting plenty of visibility as many users don’t notice they’re even being given ads.


Life After Sidebar Ad Removal


Positions 1-4 now appear at the very top of the SERPs page, and they will continue to resemble organic results as much as possible. Herein lies the opportunity, as there will now be an additional "top spot" for advertisers to pursue. This is where advertisers need to place their focus.


However, ads in positions 5-10 might as well not exist at all, as they will be displayed at the very bottom of the page, a location where they are unlikely to ever be seen.


This does mean bidding will become far more competitive. However, it would be a mistake to think that advertisers should abandon relevancy or even creativity. Those two qualities will still impact your CTRs, which will continue to have a bearing on your ad position. Don’t expect that to change—Google thrives on customer trust, and if customers don’t trust they’ll receive highly relevant results on the SERPs then Google will lose its dominance. Ad results have to be just as relevant as organic results if Google is to maintain that trust, if not more so.


Ad relevancy also has an impact on your ROI. Why wouldn’t you make the most of your ad dollar by building the best ads you possibly can, no matter which position you ultimately attempt to bid your way into?


Why Did Google make This Change?


There are several reasons.


Sidebar ads served to draw more attention to the fact that there were ads on the page at all. Google is trying to get more clicks from ad-adverse individuals since they don’t make money when a user clicks on organic results.


Also, the SERPs page now looks cleaner and less cluttered, again resulting in greater user satisfaction.


Finally, there’s the somewhat cynical but not necessarily inaccurate reasoning that Google has made this move to force bid increases, since relevant, creative ads will no longer save you if you aren’t willing to pay competitive rates for your keywords.


How should your company respond?


If you’ve been sitting in positions 5 or 6 then you’ll definitely want to allocate more funds to your PPC campaigns so you may start increasing your bids right away. Do this no matter how good you think your ad copy is.


If you’re in position 4, then you’re about to see a big increase in your CTR. However, don’t get too comfortable: consult with your ad manager about how you can keep your new pole position. You will probably have to increase your budget as well, as will everyone in positions 1, 2, and 3. Competitors will have no choice but to increase their own bids in an attempt to try to force you out of your top spots. In the short term you might enjoy an increase in traffic without changing your bids as your competitors scramble to catch up. Just don’t expect the free ride to last.
Sources:


http://www.ppchero.com/sidebar-ads-my-conspiracy-theory/?

Google recently announced the debut of the Google Real Time Ads tool. Unfortunately, so far this tool has only been made available to major brands.

This means a lot of the information about Real Time Ads, such as specifics on how it functions or how effective it might be, are actually quite vague. Still, this is a tool worth keeping an eye on.

Real Time Ads, in a Nutshell

Real Time Ads allows you to create and change ads automatically based upon the time of day, or, in the case of major, expected events, both the date and the time.

If you run a restaurant, for example, you might run a breakfast ad between the hours of 5 a.m. and 11 a.m., a lunch ad between the hours of 11 a.m. and 3 p.m., and a dinner ad from 3 p.m. to midnight. You might choose to halt advertisements altogether during the hours you aren’t open.

Now, to an extent, this capability already exists within the existing AdWords framework—but executing it is messy, and it requires a really skilled PPC manager who can help you juggle the various campaigns. Most brands will continue to want to use a skilled PPC manager, of course, but the execution will be a lot cleaner, allowing you to upload a single spreadsheet across a single campaign.

A Misunderstood Example: The Super Bowl

Many of the early articles about Real Time Ads make it sound as though Google is going to go in and change your ads (with or without your approval) based on world events, trending topics or social media chatter. For example, Marketing Land recently published an article on the topic of Real Time Ads, featuring an accompanying image of a mobile ad being run in response to a touchdown scored in the upcoming “Big Game”. This image offers the impression that Google knows a touchdown has been made and can react by updating or modifying your ads accordingly.

Marketing Land wasn’t trying to misrepresent this capability, mind…we’re only noting that it might be easy to walk away with that impression by reading the smattering of articles about Real Time Ads that have appeared on the Internet.

In reality, Real Time Ads is not linked into any service that tracks scores, nor is it plugged into Twitter or Facebook. In short, AdWords has no way of knowing something like a touchdown has just happened.

Nor would you necessarily want Google making decisions like that for you, as that would make it very difficult for you to protect your brand.

Instead, you or your marketing firm will need to do a lot of pre-planning. You will have to pre-write and pre-design ads in response to events you know are coming, like the half-time show or the end of the game.

See this article from The Search Engine Journal for some other great examples of events that might be worth targeting and watching closely.

Where will the ads be published?

Ads will get published plenty of places: all 2 million of the sites on the Google Display Network as well as YouTube and a slew of apps. In short, visibility will be no problem at all, and there’s no concern that you’ll simply be shooting these laser-focused, time-sensitive ads out into a vacuum.

So what should you do next?

We know two of the brands who have been given access to the beta test: Wix.com, and Comcast. We also know the first test will be happening during the upcoming Super Bowl.

Even if you are not a big football fan it may be worth your while to watch the Super Bowl this year, just to get a sense of how these tools are being leveraged. Keep your mobile phone handy and periodically pull up YouTube videos to see what you can see. Take a few notes. This exercise may give you some ideas on how you can turn Real Time Ads into an advantage when and if it becomes available to the rest of us.

————————————–

Sources:
http://marketingland.com/google-announces-real-time-ads-so-marketers-can-jump-on-the-next-left-shark-moment-160246
https://www.searchenginejournal.com/google-real-time-ads/154641/

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