In this monthly post, we bring you the latest from all of the major platforms.

Google Ads

What: Resources For Managing Campaigns through COVID-19

Details:  Google has created a centralized space for their resources in managing paid ad campaigns in the mix of global pandemic. This page is chock-full of resources and tips on strategy for each network, platform, and reporting tool leveraged through Google. Here is Google’s COVID-19 Management Page, which also contains a link to the playbook released last month.

Impact: While this resources book will not passively impact campaign performance, we want to call it out as it is full of potential to improve campaigns and strategy, particularly for industries hard-hit by COVID-19. 

What: Automatic Switch To Top Impression Share Bidding

Details: Last year, Google rolled out Top Impression Share Bidding and, in turn, took away the option to select Top Search Page Location and Target Outranking Share bidding in new campaigns. However, at that point any campaigns currently running on these two bid strategies would be grandfathered into the system and continue to run. However, the time has come for Google to automatically switch these grandfathered campaigns over to Top Impression Share Bidding. Over the next few weeks, existing campaigns using these strategies will automatically be switched to Target Impression Share strategy based on previous target locations and historical impression share.

Impact: Switching to a new bid strategy can cause unexpected fluctuations in performance as the new algorithm learns and optimizes. If you are currently running on Top Search Page Location or Target Outranking Share, either manually switch your campaigns to a new desired bid strategy or be on the lookout for the auto-switch and anticipate performance changes.  

What: Refine Keywords in Keyword Planner

Details: Keyword Planner allows advertisers to find new keyword ideas for their account. However, previously advertisers would need to manually sort through Google’s suggestions and group keywords into their current campaigns or create new ones. Now Google is helping to automate the process by offering the option to “refine keywords.”  This option will group together keyword ideas based on the attributes of your product or service, such as color, size, etc. 

Impact: This update is targeted to improve the workflow of advertisers, rather than performance itself. Overall, advertisers will still see the same keyword suggestions from the Keyword Planner, but this update will make it easier to implement new keywords and expand campaign reach. This will save you time to focus on other optimizations!

What: Conversion Explanations

Details: When advertisers optimize or update their campaigns, we expect to see changes in our conversion volume. However, it is often difficult to explain the change, particularly if it is an unexpected one. Google is now helping us to uncover the reason behind conversion volume changes with explanations. Advertisers can now request an explanation in the Google interface for Search campaigns, which will automatically tell us the reason for changes in clicks, impressions, conversions, and cost.  This feature is limited to manual CPC and ECPC campaigns and will only work for campaigns that have seen significant changes in performance. 

Impact: This update will save advertisers time in analyzing campaign performance, allowing us to focus our time and energy on next steps and new optimization. It will also allow us to more quickly identify what is working well and what isn’t, then pivot as needed – making us more agile in our campaign management. 

Facebook Ads

What: Limited Data Use For CCPA Compliance

Details:  Facebook is introducing a new feature call Limited Data Use, which will help businesses comply with the California Consumer Protection Act. When a business applies this feature, it will tell Facebook to process information about people in California as the business’s Service Provider, limiting the data processing to meet state standards.  This feature will be rolled out around July 31st and businesses will be able to opt-in the program. However, until then Facebook will automatically limit their use of data to meet California standards for all businesses, so rest assured that you are currently covered. It is important to note that once this feature is rolled out, Facebook will stop automatically limiting their data usage and businesses will need to opt-in to the Limited Data Use feature to stay compliant with CCPA. 

Impact: There is a lot of confusion around CCPA and what advertisers/businesses need to do to stay compliant. This feature will give businesses peace of mind that Facebook is not utilizing their data in a way that will violate the new law. However, again, businesses must take action to opt-in to this feature. 

What: Ecommerce Eligibility Requirements

Details: On June 23rd, Facebook announced that they are expanding access to Instagram Shopping for more types of businesses. Under these new eligibility requirements, any eligible business account with at least one eligible product can use shopping tags to drive people to their website. The updated requirements will go into effect on July 9th.

Impact: This update will open up the door for new businesses to begin advertising on Instagram. The change will likely impact small businesses and creators in a positive way, while some current advertisers may see an increase in competition on Instagram.

General Note

If you missed last month’s updates, you can check them out here:  May 2020 Updates to Paid Media Platforms.