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New Ad Buying Automation via Google

Google has introduced a few new AI-driven tweaks for campaigns in the Display & Video 360 platform.

We’re talking outcome-based ad buying and automated bidding at the insertion order level. It’s simpler and more impressive than it may sound…

Automating outcome-based success

Up to now, automated bidding in Display & Video 360 only supported ad buying on a cost per thousand impressions (CPM) basis. Google says its algorithms can also increase returns for campaigns with a goal like clicks and conversions.

Now, Google has introduced outcome-based buying to Display & Video 360. It supports cost-per-click buying for campaigns that use one of two mainstream strategies:
– target CPA (cost per acquisition), or
– maximize conversions.

For either of these strategies, Display & Video 360 can apply Google algorithms to optimise advertiser bids. If used and executed properly, it should help advertisers get more users through the pointy end of the funnel.

Insertion-order level option awesomeness

Along with the outcome-based ad buying, Google also unveiled new automated bidding options: as of now, advertisers can set automated bidding at the insertion order level. Previously this was only possible at the line-item level.

At first glance, this might seem like purely a process change, but its far cooler than that. With the ability to conder the performance of multiple items and see the bigger picture, Display & Video 360 can now optimise bid strategies for greater bottom-line performance.

It has the capacity to evaluate how each line item in a set performs, consider that performance in context, then re-allocate spending to favour bids and items that give the best returns across the board.

Testing testimonials

In the press release for outcome-based buying, Google includes a testimonial from Justin Scarborough from PMG—an agency that got to beta test the new outcome-based buying functionality.

Scarborough says that one ‘recent test’ of outcome-based bidding saw a stunning ‘90% more conversions compared to our previous bidding strategy.’

Such examples can be psychologically convincing, but they inevitably illustrate a best-case scenario. Importantly, the 90% figure only reports on a single observation, picked from a pool of samples that could have included thousands of less-impressive results.

Certainly, the new options in Display & Video 360 have promise. But, it’s not suggested that anyone should expect them to herald a general upswing of 90%. It’s not even claimed that PMG can reliably reproduce that singularly impressive result.   

As machine learning drives efficiencies for all parts of the online ad-placement equation, is demand side holding its own?

Copy Transmission is a Melbourne-based agency :: Better Brands. Loud & Clear.


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