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8 Takeaways from Google Marketing Live 2018

On Tuesday, July 10, Google hosted its annual marketing event in San Jose California, Google Marketing Live. At this event, every year new marketing innovations and new products from Google are announced. It has become clear that many new products apply machine learning and that automation options are further integrated into all marketing applications. Nothing new on the horizon? And yet, because in addition to automatic bid strategies, parts of the creative process and target group targeting are now also being automated on the basis of the marketer’s input.

As a progressive marketer, you can not stay behind when it comes to following these developments. In this article, you can read all about the key takeaways from this event.


2017 vs 2018

In 2017 the keynote of Google was still hidden under a different name, namely Google Marketing Next. At the time, the end of keyword-based advertising was discussed. Machine learning and data-driven responsiveness to context and user intent were the revelations of last year. We are now a year further, and Google distributes the same messages, but still goes a few steps further.

1. Advertisements become reliable

Google pursues three important values. The intention is that advertisements are valuable, transparent and reliable. Google sees that ads are becoming more reliable. In the past year, for example, they received 5 billion responses worldwide on display ads.

As a consumer, you can give feedback with each display advertisement, if you do not find the advertisement interesting ( signal function) or if you do not want to see the advertisement ( mute function). In this way, the algorithm learns more and more about which advertisements are relevant for each target group and each individual.

Google pursues three important values. The intention is that advertisements are valuable, transparent and reliable.

2. Google Ads & Marketing Platform

Less than 2 weeks ago, Google introduced that Google Ads will replace the well-known product AdWords. In addition, organizations with more budget get the opportunity to work with Google Marketing Platform.

The goal of this product division is to work more integrated and to have more time for other matters. The automated campaigns must make this reality. We will discover the coming months about the development of these new products.

3. YouTube Maximize Lift

The most important addition to the YouTube advertising arsenal is a new smart bid strategy: Maximize Lift.

With this bidding strategy, you as an advertiser can offer an advertisement to users who are highly likely to consider a brand, when they are ready to make a purchase and when they have a video ad in the customer journey. seen.

Maximize Lift will be available towards the end of this year.

4. Responsive Search Ads

This new ad type automates A/B testing using the Google algorithm. Advertisers can enter up to 15 titles and 4 descriptions with Responsive Search Ads. In the description, you can lose 90 characters instead of 80. The machine learning system then creates advertisements with 3 different titles and 2 different descriptions.

The algorithm ensures that the search is matched as well as possible with the most suitable advertisement (text). The more varied texts you have entered, the more likely you are that you have a matching ad text. This greatly increases the chance of conversion. You can read more about Responsive Search Ads in this article .



Responsive Search Ads will be rolled out for all English-speaking advertisers in the coming months and towards the end of 2018 for other languages.

5. Cross-Device Reporting & Remarketing

It has been a hot topic among marketers for years: how can we follow our target audience when they switch between devices? Until now, this was not possible yet. Google has always had this high on the agenda, but was not yet able to turn this into a good working option in Google Analytics.

With Cross-Device Reporting and remarketing you can follow users who have given permission for this in an anonymous way. You can better map the customer journey, allowing you to make better marketing decisions.


What does this mean for you?

Google explains it with the following example:

Imagine you are a shoe manufacturer who wants to find the best buyers who have spent more than $500. And you want to make a unique offer for this specific group of customers. If a customer bought $300 via his mobile device and also $300 via desktop, these 2 transactions could not be linked to each other before.

You could then incorrectly place this customer in the wrong target group, as a result of which this customer misses the unique offer. With the cross-device reports, you can ensure that the segmentations improve and that the value of customers is correctly attributed. Applying value to campaigns is called conversion attribution and you can do that in different ways.

6. Smart Shopping Campaign Goals, Automated Feeds & Shopify

Smart Shopping Campaign Goals

The Smart Shopping Campaign type allows you to manage the entire Google network based on the value of your conversion goals, such as ROAS or sales. Two new goals will be added to the targeted campaigns, namely: new customers and offline store visits.

As with Responsive Search Ads, the algorithm ensures that users who are most likely to meet a goal will see the ad. In this example, a person who is more likely to do an offline store visit after he has first done a search through Google will be served an ad. It is possible that the algorithm increases the bid in such a case.


Google has entered into cooperation with external e-commerce platforms, such as Shopify. You can now set up Smart Shopping campaigns from Shopify. The link with external platforms may be extended.

Automated Feeds

Later this year, the Automated Feeds for shopping ads option will also be launched. This new option should make it easier and faster for retailers to create a product feed. It works like this: Google crawls your website and collects relevant product information and automatically creates a product feed from the online assortment.

7. Local Ad Campaigns

In recent years we see that Google is increasingly committed to encouraging offline visits in stores. In the keynote, Sridhar Ramaswamy (Head of Ads at Google) reveals that local searches with words like “opened in my neighborhood” are 10 times as high as previously measured.

Local Ad Campaigns is a new ad type that aims to stimulate store visits. Advertisers only need to enter a budget and the ads are automatically generated based on creative elements from the advertiser and location extensions. Google itself optimizes the delivery of the ads through various channels, such as YouTube, Search, Maps, Play Store and websites from the Google Display Network.

Machine learning

It is clear that here the machine learning algorithm is working hard. Naturally, the algorithm uses anonymized and aggregated data from users who have given permission for this.

Local Ad Campaigns will be rolled out in the coming months.

8. Hotel ads

Advertising options for hotels are added to the Google Ads platform. Since Google Ads is now the logical place for all Google advertising channels, it seems like a logical choice.

Live stream

Watch the live stream for the entire keynote below:

What impact do you see?

Which Google developments have the most impact for your business? I am very curious. Do you have questions? Leave a comment under this article.

About the author


Vikram is a Digital Media Strategy Consultant who helps small business owners grow their
business. He is passionate about blogging, digital marketing, and emerging technologies.

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