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What Are Responsive Search Ads and Why Should You Use Them?

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What Are Responsive Search Ads and Why Should You Use Them?


As a marketer, we’ve been talking about personalization and responsive advertising for some time now. And that trend isn’t going away.

In 2019, 72% of display ads were responsive (more than double what they found just two years previous).

Additionally, the ways people search are changing. Google found that 15% of search queries every day are new searches they’ve never seen before.

That’s why starting June 30, 2022, responsive search ads will be the only search ad type that can be created or edited in Google standard search campaigns. The goal is that this change will help simplify the way you create search ads and make it easier to drive performance.

To prepare for this upcoming change, let’s discuss what responsive search ads are and the best practices for creating them.

The goal is to show a different combination of titles and descriptions for different users depending on their unique queries and search history. Google will alternate between the titles and descriptions, showing 32,760 different versions of the ad. Then, the search engine will find the most effective title and description combination and use it the most often.

Responsive search ads are a simple and strategic way to create an effective PPC marketing strategy. You can boost your engagement and reach more potential customers with the most effective version of your ad.

 

Responsive Search Ads vs. Dynamic Search Ads

While they’re similar, responsive search ads and dynamic search ads are different. Again, responsive search ads are when you create multiple versions of your title and description, and Google will alternate between them.

On the other hand, dynamic search ads are when Google itself issues a headline for an ad — one you didn’t write — depending on the content and search query.

Responsive search ads are great to use for brand awareness and lead generation, while dynamic ads are helpful for content and keyword-based pages.

Now, you might be wondering what the benefits of responsive search ads are — let’s review below.

1. Personalized search ads.

One of the main benefits of responsive search ads is personalization. Since 90% of U.S. consumers find marketing personalization very or somewhat appealing, it’s important to make your ads as personalized as possible.

Responsive search ads are displayed based on a user’s search history, past clicks, device type, and search query (keywords used). Google will use the title and description you wrote that is most relevant. Additionally, responsive search ads can be tailored depending on a user’s current location, regular location, or location of interest.

This means that with responsive search ads, you’ll benefit from a more personalized ad experience.

2. Optimized search ads depending on the device type.

Similar to the point above, when a user is searching on their mobile device versus the computer, the size of the device is different (shocking, I know).

This means they can see less of the title and description of your ad. With responsive search ads, you can allocate smaller-width headlines and descriptions for the mobile experience.

Ultimately this can help you have more room to share your message and will hopefully increase your click-through rate (CTR) on all device types.

3. Simple A/B testing.

As discussed, with responsive search ads, Google will use thousands of variations of your search engine ads. This means that Google will automatically be testing the different versions of your ad, so you don’t have to micro-analyze CTR or impressions anymore.

Interestingly, according to Google, responsive search ads have also resulted in 6% more clicks and 5% higher CTR. This ad type will save you time since Google will do the testing for you, and drive higher results.

4. Compete in more auctions and reach more customers.

With more headlines and descriptions, your ads will compete in more auctions, match more queries, and ultimately reach more customers. Increasing your reach while also increasing your results is one of the main benefits of using responsive search ads.

So, now we know that responsive search ads are here to stay and can help change your PPC strategy. But, how can you write the best responsive search ads to guarantee results? Let’s look at some best practices below to help you get started.

1. Write unique titles and descriptions to create variation.

Since one of the main benefits of responsive search ads is the variation in writing 15 headlines and four descriptions, it’s important to make those titles and descriptions unique.

The goal is to have as much variation as possible. Test different CTAs, call out different features, include different keywords, have different header lengths, etc. Having unique titles and descriptions (instead of very similar ones) will drive higher results as Google can see which ones are more effective.

2. Experiment with different header lengths and types of descriptions.

As we discussed above, it’s important to experiment with different header lengths. You’ll want to include shorter versions of your titles for mobile devices, and longer versions for those on a desktop.

Additionally, you should experiment with different types of descriptions. These can include descriptions that have special offers, discount codes, savings, or product benefits and features.

3. Entice users with different offers in your descriptions.

Using offers and discounts is a great strategy for responsive search ads. You can test which special offers or discounts work the best by using several different ones in your descriptions. Depending on which performs better, Google will begin showing that description more than the other versions.

4. Have concise and straightforward CTAs.

The best responsive search ads have concise and straightforward CTAs. These should be short-form CTAs like “Save Now,” “Get Free Shipping Now,” or “Why Pay Full Price? Save 70% Today!”

Short and concise CTAs tend to perform better on PPC ads in general, so it’s important to continue using those types of CTAs for your responsive search ads.

5. Include keywords, product features, and benefits, where you can.

To drive results with responsive search ads, it’s important to include keywords in your headlines, and add product features or benefits to your descriptions. This will help you match several different queries, increase your reach, and ultimately drive more results from your responsive search ads.

6. Use existing content from high-performing ads.

You’ve most likely already done PPC advertising before this. Look for your high-performing ads, and use some of that existing content in your responsive search ads. This is the best practice for many types of PPC advertising, and it’s no different with responsive search ads.

Responsive search ads are becoming more popular and more important in the world of search engine advertising. Think about how you can implement these ads to drive results and improve your PPC strategy.

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ActionIQ rebrands and launches CX Hub

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ActionIQ rebrands and launches CX Hub


Enterprise customer data platform ActionIQ has announced the launch of a new product, CX Hub. The company has also rebranded as AIQ. The CX Hub is designed as a set of modules offering self-service access to customer data, allowing users to build audiences and orchestrate experiences at scale.

After eight years of growth as a CDP serving B2C, media and other sectors, the changes represent a “new approach to our product and brand,” said CEO and co-founder Tasso Argyros in a release. The modular framework will ingest data from any source, integrate with any activation channel, and also allow components to be used with a third-party CDP.

The modules. CX Hub is comprised of four solutions:

  • Customer data platform.
  • Audience center.
  • Journey management.
  • Real-time CX.

The Hub is also designed to be accessible to business users with a friendly UI and extensive automation capabilities.


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Why we care. This is a significant development in the CDP space — a space that has been transforming rapidly, with many of the early established CDPs being acquired and ingested by more extensive suites such as digital experience platforms.

ActionIQ, one of the leading B2C CDPs, is now describing itself as “the leading CX solution.” It seems to be future-proofing itself by extending its capabilities across orchestration and execution channels, not by acquiring or building those solutions, but by seeking to provide modular integration between its (or a third-party’s) customer data management tool and orchestration and execution channels.

Sometimes we wonder how many independent, traditional CDPs will be left standing a year from now.

Read next: Deep changes in the CDP space


About The Author

Kim Davis is the Editorial Director of MarTech. Born in London, but a New Yorker for over two decades, Kim started covering enterprise software ten years ago. His experience encompasses SaaS for the enterprise, digital- ad data-driven urban planning, and applications of SaaS, digital technology, and data in the marketing space.

He first wrote about marketing technology as editor of Haymarket’s The Hub, a dedicated marketing tech website, which subsequently became a channel on the established direct marketing brand DMN. Kim joined DMN proper in 2016, as a senior editor, becoming Executive Editor, then Editor-in-Chief a position he held until January 2020.

Prior to working in tech journalism, Kim was Associate Editor at a New York Times hyper-local news site, The Local: East Village, and has previously worked as an editor of an academic publication, and as a music journalist. He has written hundreds of New York restaurant reviews for a personal blog, and has been an occasional guest contributor to Eater.



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Old Navy to drop NFTs in July 4th promo update

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Old Navy to drop NFTs in July 4th promo update


Old Navy will update its yearly Fourth of July promotions by saluting the metaverse with an NFT drop, going live June 29.

In honor of the year they were founded, the retailer will release 1,994 common NFTs, each selling for $0.94. The NFTs will feature the iconic Magic the Dog and t include a promo code for customers to claim an Old Navy t-shirt at Old Navy locations or online.

“This launch is Old Navy’s first activation in web3 or with NFTs,” an Old Navy spokesperson told MarTech. “As a brand rooted in democratization and inclusivity, it was essential that we provide access and education for all with the launch of our first NFT collection. We want all our customers, whether they have experience with web3, to be able to learn and participate in this activation.”

Accessible and user-friendly. Any customer can participate by visiting a page off of Old Navy’s home site, where they’ll find step-by-step instructions.

There will also be an auction for a unique one-of-one NFT. All proceeds for the NFT and shirt sales go to Old Navy’s longtime charitable partner, Boys & Girls Clubs of America.

Additionally, 10% of NFT resales on the secondary market will also go to Boys & Girls Clubs.

Support. This activation is supported by Sweet, who’s played a major role in campaigns for other early NFT adopters like Burger King.

The Old Navy NFTs will be minted on the Tezos blockchain, known for its low carbon footprint.

“This is Old Navy’s first time playing in the web3 space, and we are using the launch of our first NFT collection to test and learn,” said Old Navy’s spokesperson. “We’re excited to enable our customers with a new way to engage with our iconic brand and hero offerings and look forward to exploring additional consumer activations in web3 in the future.”

Read next: 4 key strategies for NFT brand launches

Why we care. Macy’s also announced an NFT promotion timed to their fireworks show. This one will award one of 10,000 NFTs to those who join their Discord server.

Old Navy, in contrast, is keeping customers closer to their owned channels, and not funneling customers to Discord. Old Navy consumers who don’t have an NFT wallet can sign up through Sweet to purchase and bid on NFTs.

While Macy’s has done previous web3 promotions, this is Old Navy’s first. They’ve aligned a charity partner, brand tradition and concern for the environment with a solid first crack at crypto.


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About The Author

Chris Wood draws on over 15 years of reporting experience as a B2B editor and journalist. At DMN, he served as associate editor, offering original analysis on the evolving marketing tech landscape. He has interviewed leaders in tech and policy, from Canva CEO Melanie Perkins, to former Cisco CEO John Chambers, and Vivek Kundra, appointed by Barack Obama as the country’s first federal CIO. He is especially interested in how new technologies, including voice and blockchain, are disrupting the marketing world as we know it. In 2019, he moderated a panel on “innovation theater” at Fintech Inn, in Vilnius. In addition to his marketing-focused reporting in industry trades like Robotics Trends, Modern Brewery Age and AdNation News, Wood has also written for KIRKUS, and contributes fiction, criticism and poetry to several leading book blogs. He studied English at Fairfield University, and was born in Springfield, Massachusetts. He lives in New York.



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Are you still using spreadsheets to manage your work? Take our poll

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Are you still using spreadsheets to manage your work? Take our poll


Earlier this year, revenue orchestration platform LeanData released a report suggesting that lead management remains a “heavily manual” process. Based on a survey of more than 1,700 sales, marketing and operations professionals, the results showed that, despite all the talk of digital transformation, the number two challenge for revenue teams was too many manual processes and not enough automation (the number one challenge was insufficient pipeline).

LeanData, which partnered with Sales Hacker, Outreach and Heinz Marketing in conducting the survey, is interested in that result, of course, because lead management is precisely the process they offer to automate. We were struck by the contrast with Scott Brinker’s recent statement that we are arriving at a post-digital-transformation era: “(C)ompanies are no longer planning to become ‘digital.’ They are digital.”

And then we got the results of our 2022 MarTech Career and Salary Survey. Among the surprising nuggets to be mined from our findings was that 77% of respondents identify spreadsheets as the tool they spend most time (10 or more hours a week) working with. That doesn’t mean that spreadsheets are a marketer’s most important tool, but it does suggest that manual processes remain a key part of daily life for marketing managers and staff.

We wanted to extend the opportunity to all our readers — B2B, B2C, agencies — to give us a reality check on spreadsheet use. MarTech is marketing, we like to say, and certainly today’s marketing is fundamentally data-driven and digital. But is it too soon to say that marketers are working in a digital and largely automated environment?

Download the 2022 MarTech Career and Salary Survey here


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About The Author

Kim Davis is the Editorial Director of MarTech. Born in London, but a New Yorker for over two decades, Kim started covering enterprise software ten years ago. His experience encompasses SaaS for the enterprise, digital- ad data-driven urban planning, and applications of SaaS, digital technology, and data in the marketing space.

He first wrote about marketing technology as editor of Haymarket’s The Hub, a dedicated marketing tech website, which subsequently became a channel on the established direct marketing brand DMN. Kim joined DMN proper in 2016, as a senior editor, becoming Executive Editor, then Editor-in-Chief a position he held until January 2020.

Prior to working in tech journalism, Kim was Associate Editor at a New York Times hyper-local news site, The Local: East Village, and has previously worked as an editor of an academic publication, and as a music journalist. He has written hundreds of New York restaurant reviews for a personal blog, and has been an occasional guest contributor to Eater.



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