AdWords are one of the oldest and strongest methods of digital marketing. Xoogler Reema Prasanna shares her thoughts on evolution of AdWords and her take on digital marketing in 2016.
Q. There have been many new additions to the Google Adwords platform in the past couple of years, what are some of the possible changes we will witness in 2016?
A. There’s tonnes of new innovation happening on Mobile and Video. That’s where we have seen maximum innovation in the last one year and I don’t see that changing in 2016. The future is mobile for platforms. The future is video for content. I am also hoping for big things on the programmatic buying front from Google. It’s been a bit tricky in our market getting clients and agencies to truly understand programmatic buying but I hope Google’s foray into that territory will make things very interesting.
(We also recommend you to read 9 Content Marketing Ideas that are set to dominate 2016)
Q. A lot has been said about Google +, including the latest news about its apparent relaunch. How much should a marketer focus on Google +, specially when it comes to making their ads more relevant.
A. Google may have stopped actively supporting Google+ plus that does not mean it’s not relevant
anymore. In December alone, we saw a stripped down version release, we saw local pages get a redesign. Personally, I’d keep my radar up as a marketeer.
Q. Google ads have over the years become expensive. What should make a marketer stick to it specially when there are more affordable options(like ad networks, some social networks) available out there.
A. Everything gets expensive over time. Inflation kicks in, competition kicks in, demand-supply variables go crazy, market structures shift and categories get added all the time. That’s normal. Search marketing is still the largest RoI driver, it gets the moolah home and you can keep optimising it and adding layers of strategy to it as innovations unfold. Social is content and branding, building a voice and engagement, interaction – important stuff but not directly RoI.
Social is never going to be out and out RoI. Facebook knows this too and so you see more of their energies diverting to making Facebook ads more if not equally robust. Why should you stick to Google AdWords regardless of everything else you do on digital? Because these guys have fifteen years worth of data and research when it comes to what works in SEM and they have constantly gotten better and refined how they deliver value to advertisers. You should just know how the product works and if you do, it can work wonders for you. Coupled with Google Analytics, AdWords is a force of nature.
(You don’t want to miss reading 15 Powerful ways to run Social Ads on Facebook)
Q. Ads on mobile have been a big issue, both in terms of display and getting people to engage with them. Do you feel mobile only ad networks will pose a serious threat to adwords in 2016?
A. One answer: AdMob – and that, coupled with AdWords intelligence and platform, makes it so much more performance driven than any other network.
(You can’t afford to not do Mobile Marketing)
Q. Any 3 quick tips from your side for Digital Marketers on how they should go about their search engine marketing strategy in 2016?
A. The problem with most advertisers, at least in India, is this: they get the basics wrong and then try to fix it on the surface, while constantly asking “what next?” I am a very back to the basics person. I believe that you must first understand the product thoroughly. There’s no point putting all that effort into a complex product mindlessly and then spending tons of money and effort in trying to fix what you messed up. Get it right the first time. Go back to the drawing board, use your mind. Do you need AdWords? Do you need RoI or do you need branding or do you need category awareness? Do you need specific targeting types to achieve a certain marketing goal or are you just doing a bit of everything because you have that option?
I don’t have three quick tips. I have one simple tip. Stop treating your digital efforts like an all you can eat buffet. You do not have to eat everything that’s available because it’s available and you paid for it. Get clarity about what different platforms can do for you and then think about what you need to be doing. This makes your digital efforts so much more simple, affordable and easier to manage, makes it easier to achieve your goals. Just because the whole world is jumping onto the next big bandwagon, doesn’t mean your business must too.
(Side note : Have you tried using SEMRush for improving your ad words efforts?)
Reema Prasanna is a digital marketing strategist with focus on Search Marketing, Social Marketing and Content Strategy. She’s a SEM trainer with DigitalVidya.com, Google Regional Trainer with Cardinal Path & Google Partners Trainer. She works independently with digital startups in Mumbai. She has previously worked at multiple Indian digital agencies and Google India Pvt Ltd. Complete hatred for traffic jams and skewed work-life balance made her give up her previous desk-imprisoned 9-to-9 corporate life. She is also into fitness, meditation and cooking.