Google Adwords

Google Now Lets You Target Ads At Yourself

Posted on March 12, 2009. Filed under: Google Adwords, Internet Market | Tags: , , |

By Erick Schonfeld,

google-ad-preferencesGoogle is wading into behavioral ad targeting in a big way today. It will start placing cookies on consumer’s browsers to collect information about their interests whenever they visit sites that show AdSense contextual ads. Then it will show ads targeted to those interests to the same person as he or she browses the Web on other sites that also serve AdSense ads (which is a large portion of all commercial sites).

Since Google already knows what each site or page is about, it will use this information to place each user in one of 600 subcategories of interest. If you visit tech blogs often, you are probably interested in technology. If you visit Trulia, you are probably in the market for real estate. Through AdSense, Google can now target ads not only based on the context of the page you are on, but also based on the context of the pages you have visited in the past, even if you are on a site that is completely unrelated. For instance, as a completely hypothetical example, it might show you a real estate ad targeted to the towns you were searching on Trulia when you visit a gadget blog.

Not only will Google now target ads at you based on your interest, but it will also let you target yourself. Anyone can go to Google’s Ad Preferences Manager and see exactly how Google is categorizing their interests. (Most people will probably see nothing right now, since this program is only being rolled out on a test basis and will gradually expand). Now, here’s the really smart part: Google lets you add or remove any interest. In effect, it is inviting you to declare what kind of ads you wan to see. You can also opt out of the program completely.

While most people will probably never bother to tweak their ad preferences or even be aware that they can, this represents an important new precedent in online advertising. Why should the ad networks be the only ones who can determine how to target ads at consumers? Why not let the consumers self-target if they care to do so?

Google knows that its interest-based targeting algorithms need a lot of work. Even if it can get just a small percentage of people to correct the algorithm, that data theoretically could be applied to other people with similar browsing patterns. Google gets to say that it is giving users more privacy and control, while collecting really valuable data that will help make its targeting more effective. In the online ad game, whoever can target the best can charge the most.


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Adwords in the News, Literally

Posted on March 2, 2009. Filed under: Google Adwords, Internet Market | Tags: , , |

By Frank Reed

google-newsGoogle is now placing paid search ads in the news results. Whether it’s a response to the economy of justthe next step it probably is considered to be a long time coming. As the search industry takes some hits due to the economy there will be more efforts to put more ads in front of more people. It seems a bit surprising that it has taken this long to happen anyway.

Paid Content tells about the story and points to CNET seeing some glitches early on as it relates to relevancy of the ads. The example that CNET points to is for the search “spring training” which yielded 1 out of three results being in the ballpark. CNET’s use of a search term that can be ‘confused’ with a hot online keyword like training though is playing hardball for sure. I tried a few more normal / regular searches and the ads were spot on regarding relevancy.

While this is news to a degree it’s more of a recognition that Google knows where its bread is buttered. They need to do a little asset optimization like everyone else to get through these times. The article also pointed out that the search marketing behemoth let go of 100 recruiters back in January as they reigned in hiring. I suspect that many want to start to toll the bells for Google. That kind of thinking would fit into the environment we live in where everyone is trying to out- gloom each other from the President on down. Good luck though because they are Google after all.

I suspect that Google is fine. In fact it sounds like they are maturing rather nicely. They are taking measures to continue to do good business despite a rapidly changing environment. The chances of them being blindsided seem slim since they don’t take an ‘ignore it and it will go away’ stance but rather a ‘hey, it’s rough out there let’s cover ourselves for now and come out the other side of this strong’ How many companies would like that opportunity these days?

Source: marketingpilgrim

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Google Testing SearchWiki For Adwords

Posted on February 17, 2009. Filed under: Google Adwords | Tags: , , , , |

Search Engine Roundtable and Webmaster World have started a discussion of Google’s testing of a SearchWiki for Adwords. The addition would give users the ability to push certain paid ads down similar to what they are offering for organic search results.

google testing searchwiki fo adwords

The screen shot was grabbed by a Webmaster World user but later edited out though Barry Schwartz included it in his post at The comments about this are interesting as they suggest they could be used to impact paid results.

Something tells me Google will allow individuals to drop the presentation of ads on a personal basis – like an iGoogle type of thing. Could they eventually watch trends and one day use them for Quality Scores? Yes, but that would be a very foolish move and one that would then open them up to manipulation.

The discussion of the situation on Sphinn is amusing to say the least. Well-known marketer Fantomaster starts the comments with “Yep – Negative SEO goes PPC. What another great Google idea!”

Then Marty Weintraub of AimClear replies “@fantomaster: Jup, just line em’ up and knock em off like shooting rats with a bbGun.”

Following those two amusing comments the gates opened and all sorts of rumors and thoughts of gaming Adwords. If Google were to use any of this as feedback it is obvious gaming would run rampant and not the 1% one Sphinner suggests. Adwords is too big of a game and too important to major online advertisers for it to be open to such manipulation.

Interestingly Google has yet to enter into the fray.

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