The Complete Guide to Google's Marketing Innovations Keynote 2018

Jessica Bultman Jul 19, 2018

There has been a lot of buzz lately about Google's big changes across all advertising products.

The keynote address at last week’s Google Marketing Live conference was packed with announcements that will impact digital marketers for years to come. The presentation ran for over an hour, so there was a lot to digest. We put together a complete guide to help you quickly navigate all this new material.

Machine learning and assistance continue to be the overarching focus for Google. According to Sridhar Ramaswamy, Senior VP of Ads, Google wants to “be there and be useful” for consumers and advertisers by focusing on being valuable, transparent and trustworthy.

Google’s latest innovations help accomplish three things for advertisers: Better Results, Simpler Experiences, and Deeper Insights.

Drive Better Results

The dialogue around digital has changed. Consumers are more curious, demanding, and impatient. According to Nikki Rettke, Group Product Manager of Video Ads, “getting better results takes more than a keyword or bid” to successfully advertise to a consumer in today’s market. It’s more important than ever to be relevant.

“91% of smartphone users bought or plan to buy after seeing an ad they think is relevant.”

Google has three primary ways to help drive better results: Performance on YouTube, More Relevant Ads and Reporting Insights.

Performance on YouTube

Video continues to grow in importance and impact:

"With more than 1.9 billion logged-in users who come to YouTube every month and localized versions stretching across 90 countries and 80 languages, we’re opening up the world to anyone with a cell phone and an internet connection."

Google announced these new options for ads on YouTube to help drive results:

  1. Trueview for reach - optimized for efficient reach and combines instream format and cost per thousand impressions (CPM) buying. You can raise awareness among a broad set of customers.

  2. Trueview for action - optimized to drive conversions on your website such as booking a trip or requesting information. Form ads are set to be released later this year, which will help drive leads directly from YouTube. This feature is especially powerful when combining it with custom audiences.

  3. Maximize lift bidding - optimized to increase brand consideration and uses Google’s machine learning to help reach people that are more likely to convert after seeing your ad.

    To learn more about these new features, check out this blog on how to drive better results with YouTube.


Better, more relevant search ads

Google uses machine learning to help deliver the most relevant ads to users in real time. Current features that help do this are optimized ad rotation and smart bidding. In order to enable advertisers to create more relevant ads, Google introduced responsive search ads and mobile landing page speed score in Google Ads.

  1. Responsive search ads - Mix and match headlines and descriptions to find the best possible combination. You can have three 30 character headlines and two 90 character description lines, which is a “90% increase in text.”
    responsive search ads
    Source: YouTube

  2. Mobile landing page speed - Google has added a landing page speed score in the landing page column in Google Ads. It shows advertisers how fast their landing page loads on mobile devices. It is a ten-point scale with 1 being very slow to 10 being very fast. It is based on multiple factors, such as landing page speed and potential conversion rate. The score is updated daily.


Reporting Insights

In the keynote, the speaker said Google is committed to improving accurate measurement. To that end, Google is introducing cross device reporting and remarketing in Google Analytics.

Cross device reporting and remarketing - This much-awaited feature gives marketers a complete view of the customer journey across devices. Measure and take action on campaigns with a complete view of user interactions in your advertising ecosystem.

cross device reportingSource: Google

To get started with cross device reporting, you need to first activate Google Signals. Google Signals is a feature to report on cross-device user journeys and/or remarket to signed-in Google users. Visit the Admin section of your Analytics account and activate it. To learn more, please visit this Google blog.

Provide Simpler Experiences

Small Businesses

Small businesses are also top of mind for Google. If you don’t know where to start or don’t even have a website, Google has made it very easy and intuitive to get set up with Google Ads and grow quickly with the release of Smart Campaigns.

  • Smart Campaigns - Google took the experience of Google Ads and tailored it to be more simple, save time and deliver real results. They are also testing the ability to create landing pages that are optimized for ads. Conversion reporting is built right into the landing page to help make it easy to set up.
New campaigns were also created to help other industries such as Retail and Travel. Learn more about Smart Campaigns here.



For ads targeting the European Union and European Free Trade Association regions, the rules are more restrictive and are focused on eliminating consumer confusion around the origin of the advertised goods and services. Google says it will investigate and disapprove ads where the combination of keyword and ad featuring a trademark is potentially confusing.

  • Automated Feeds - It will launch later this year, and it will crawl your website and automatically create a feed for you from your online inventory.

  • Smart Shopping Campaigns - This feature runs ads across major Google Properties and includes Display Remarketing. It reduces the complexity of running shopping campaigns and helps increase shopping campaigns Source: Shopify


Later this year, these campaigns will also have integrations with eCommerce platforms such as Shopify.

Learn more about Smart Shopping Campaigns here.

Auto Industry and Small Businesses

In addition to Retail, the auto industry and small businesses can drive more foot traffic to brick and mortar locations with the release of Local Campaigns.

  • Local Campaigns - This is a dedicated campaign to drive local conversions, such as store visits. You can promote local businesses across Google properties.  To get started, link Google Business locations, set daily budgets, and upload creative assets and videos. Local Campaigns automatically run across Google local campaigns
    Source: Search Engine Land


Travel companies are also getting a campaign to help drive in person connections.

Hotel Campaigns - to open Hotel Ads to more advertisers, Google is launching Hotel Campaigns right in Google Ads. You can easily group hotels by parameters such as brand and class, using machine learning to help maximize hotel campaigns

Learn more about Hotel Campaigns here.

Stronger Collaboration

The Google Marketing Platform unifies Google’s advertising and analytics properties into one platform. It is a complete set of tools that can align marketing efforts from analysts to media buyers to creative agencies. The stronger collaboration makes it easier to plan, buy, optimize and measure media to improve the customer experience.

DoubleClick Search will now be known as Search Ads 360 and Display and Video 360 encompasses DoubleClick Bid Manager, Campaign Manager, Studio and Audience Center.

google marketing platform

Source: Google

Google Marketing Platform builds on existing integrations between Google Analytics 360 Suite and DoubleClick advertiser products:

“Google Marketing Platform also supports 100+ integrations with exchanges, measurement solutions, and other technology providers. In short, you can choose what media you buy, how you buy it, and how you measure it."

The integration center helps you better understand your consumer. It also provides a clearer picture on what media you buy, how you buy it and how you measure it. The data and insights from Google Marketing Platform can help improve the art of storytelling.

Now What?

Google Marketing Innovations Keynote 2018 covered a lot of new and exciting innovations! You can view the entire presentation here.

But what does this all actually mean for Digital Marketers? As with most updates to Google, it will take a little while for the average marketer to see the full effect.

Here at BrandVerity, we think some of these updates will give marketers a much better understanding of the impact of their campaign efforts. In particular, we are eager to see how the cross-device tracking capabilities will work since it is something we have heard our paid search customers talking about for years.

None of the Google updates touched directly on the topic that is near and dear to our hearts- brand protection for online content. But we know they will change the way our customers, many of whom are Paid Search Managers and Digital Marketers, conduct their day-to-day work. While the responsive search ads give advertisers more room to potentionally use trademarked terms incorrectly, it's unlikely that we will see any major impact to our brand protection efforts as a result of these changes.

Ready to start protecting your trademarked terms in Google?

Our Paid Search Monitoring demo gives you full and customized access to BrandVerity’s software with your data.

Topics: paid search, Events, News, Search Engine Updates

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