For those of you late to the game or unable to attend yesterday’s live stream presentation by Google, the lovely folks here at Acquisio have put together a quick recap of the event with some of their own thoughts. And if you are a twitter junkie you can always comb through the #stepinsideadwords feed to see what others think of the upcoming changes.

Presenter Jerry Dischler, Vice President of Product Management, AdWords opened the show with a brief history on how innovation and invention have changed the marketing landscape. Dischler goes on to point out that “It’s no longer about devices, it’s about connecting with people using those devices wherever they may be.”

Google framed their product announcement around three pillars: Innovative Ad Formats, Insightful Reporting, and Intelligent Tools.

Innovative Ad Formats

With smartphone and tablet apps growing substantially over the past few years, Google has recognized that it is an untapped market for online advertising.  The Innovative Ad Formats addresses the concept of promoting apps in Google Search, YouTube and GDN. One of the interesting new capabilities is “App Deep Linking”, the ability to really engage with users out of the gate and in turn provide a better customer experience across devices.

Along with the more holistic integration of apps into online ads, Google also mentions that measurement tools to examine installation, re-engagement and in-app purchases will be available.

“Adding another ad stream is always exciting” states Alexandre Gauthier, Product Manager at Acquisio. “It opens the door for more possibilities in the platform.”

Insightful Reporting

An interesting feature for advertisers, Google is beefing up its reporting tools.  While it is still unclear exactly how Google intends to track this, enhancements to Estimated Total Conversion will see the inclusion of offline purchases.  Last year’s release of Estimated Total Conversions added some capabilities for reporting on online, cross device, and mobile sales.

This may be meaningful for our clients involved in local marketing – being able to estimate offline sales beyond call tracking is perhaps the holy grail of local marketing. Very little was told about how these estimates are made but we hope these findings will apply for the tens of thousands of local advertisers who are managed through Acquisio.

Intelligent Tools

Within this pillar Google mentions four changes to the AdWords interface.

  1. Bulk Actions, to quickly and more seamlessly make bulk changes to your campaigns.
  2. Automated bidding, which will see Google take more control over managing your PPC spend with a “maximize conversions” and “maximize revenue” function.
  3. Reporting Enhancements, help reduce the dependencies many have on excel to dig deep into their data by having a place within AdWords to create graphs, examine live data and explore with ease.
  4. Drafts and Experiments, “a shopping cart for changes” it’s basically a virtual view of what changes will be applied.  The experiment feature will allow advertisers to deploy changes in an isolated fashion, monitor and later permanently commit changes.

“Automated bidding is not to be confused with Bid and Budget Optimization” reminds Alexandre Gauthier. “While Bid and Budget Optimization empowers users to optimize performance, Automated Bidding tends to give Google the keys to the car, along with the credit card to fuel it.”, he warned. “It’s not likely that Google is trying to minimize their revenue to favor advertisers with this functionality, it’s quite the opposite in fact.”

What does this mean for Acquisio’s Customers?

“I think it’s great news for everyone” says Marc Poirier, Acquisio Founder and EVP of Business Development. “Google’s announcement is meaningful in many ways, we will examine what changes we will need to bring to the platform on a rolling basis, just as we always have, and we will innovate on top of these things to bring more value to our clients."