Transcript: Our AdWords Announcement Liveblog - App Ads, Estimated Conversions, and Buzzword Bingo

By Eric Couch | @ecouch11 | Account Manager at Bing Ads

Join us today at 11:45 AM EST for coverage of Google’s AdWords event. In the event announcement, the AdWords team promised to unveil over 10 new products, features, and research studies that have been in the works over the last year.

In particular, they stressed the user (and advertiser) multi-screen experience, in-app advertising, and targeting improvements that “let technology do the hard work so that businesses can focus on reaching their customers”. You can expect to hear about that and more in today’s livestream found here.

Join the conversation on today’s announcements in the comments below, or connect with us on Twitter using the hashtags #thinkppc and #ppcchat!

[11:45 AM] Hello all, and thanks for joining us for today’s event! Refresh the page to update our live blog commentary.

[11:46 AM] We’re still getting set up here at Hanapin, waiting for folks to get settled in the conference room. Not expecting any Enhanced Campaigns-level curveballs, but I remain hopeful that we’ll see the return of #pizza.

[11:50 AM] We’ve got about 10 minutes to go– the stream has a very Google-esque screensaver complete with countdown. Looks like the official hashtag for this event is #StepInsideAdWords.

[11:53 AM] “Secret Jake” Fairclough has secretly entered the room. I think his plan is to do some bid changes while we wait. My plan is to be far less productive.

[11:56 AM] Almost there– here’s the view currently:

[11:58 AM] With only minutes to go, Kristina just barely made it in. We’re locking the doors after this, so it was a close call.  Note: we’re not actually locking the door.

[12:00 PM] And the countdown has finished!

[12:01 PM] And now it just says “Starting soon…”. Kind of anti-climactic.

[12:02 PM] The Dischler has arrived.

[12:03 PM] Looks like we’ve got an audience of over 20,000 tuning in to the live stream. Impressive!

[12:04 PM] Dischler heavily stressing a consumer focus, moving away from just focusing on devices.

[12:05 PM] They’re talking about jingles. Introducing AdWords Jingles?

[12:06 PM] Discussing Spotify, Pandora, iHeart radio– foreshadowing the in-app advertising rumors? Now he’s looping back to connecting to consumers in the right context.

[12:08 PM] I feel like he’s being a little generous with the success of Enhanced Campaigns.

[12:09 PM] The details of today’s announcements will be found in the coming days on Inside AdWords.

[12:10 PM] Really stressing applications.

[12:10 PM] Introducing innovative ad formats for apps across Display, Search, etc. in a “single integrated solution”.

[12:12 PM] Seems like a limited functionality– not sure how many advertisers will be able to make use of app advertising. I feel like there’s a great joke that “Silicon Valley” can make about this.

[12:13 PM] You can now link Search and Display ads in to apps directly. Interesting, but still limited in usefulness if you don’t have an app.

[12:15 PM] Using Estimated Total Conversions, advertisers gain 7% in cross-device conversions, 32% accounting for conversions starting with mobile initiation. Still fuzzy math, in my opinion.

[12:17 PM] Introducing Estimated Total Conversion enhancements to better gauge in-store sales. Apparently they’re using Express as a test case. They found a 102% ROAS from in-store sales by measuring Estimated Total Conversions with in-store traffic.

[12:18 PM] He used the term “hyper-local”. Mark your bingo cards, people.

[12:19 PM] Announcing improvements to bulk spreadsheets/actions, including the ability to modify settings and locations through this function “quickly and easily”.

[12:20 PM] Automated bidding improvements, including the ability to target to an ROAS goal? Secret Jake can barely contain himself.

[12:21 PM] Automated Bidding options– Maximize raw conversion volume, maximize revenue.  The goal is to deliver “state of the art third party enterprise solutions” for free to advertisers.

[12:22 PM] Paul Feng takes the stage! Almost one year to the day after his Hero Conf 2013 keynote!

[12:23 PM] Enhanced reporting? I’m listening, Paul…


[12:24 PM] “Multi-dimensional analysis tool” essentially allows you to create custom pivot tables directly in the interface with live data. That’s… pretty cool.

[12:25 PM] They’re now introducing visualization tools based off of those custom tables, including pie charts, line graphs, and bar charts. “Spend less of your time in the rinse and repeat, more time getting insights.”

[12:26 PM] Introducing both Drafts and Experiments– turn AdWords in to a lab where you can test changes before committing to them. Can toggle the interface in to “Draft mode” where you can test campaign changes in a sandbox environment.  A “shopping cart” for your AdWords changes.

[12:29 PM] You can turn any draft in to an experiment, allowing you to split test a portion of your traffic and gauge the impact of your changes. You can then apply the changes from the experiment to the original campaign.

[12:30 PM] The Dischler returns.

[12:31 PM] Sounds like we’re wrapping up, going over the pillars of today’s presentation:  App advertising, Estimated Total Conversion Improvements, and the above-mentioned interface improvements.

[12:31 PM] “It’s about reaching the right people, at the right moment.”

[12:33 PM] And that’s it! A quick presentation, but some interesting features announced– particularly from Paul.

[12:34 PM] Someone asked “Why does Google always make major announcements before Hero Conf?” I’d attribute it to an excellent sense of timing. Or luck. Your choice.

[12:37 PM] To answer your questions, we’ll have a final write-up on today’s event shortly in a following post.

Thanks for attending today’s live blog, and look for another write-up from me shortly!