Google Marketing Live 2024: Your roundup of announcements

May 21, 2024

A gif saying "Google Marketing Live. A new era of AI. A new era of Ads."

At Google Marketing Live 2024, we're showcasing how AI is transforming media, creative, and measurement to usher in a new era of ads. Check out this roundup of all the products we’re announcing today:

Performance Max

Combine AI-powered Search campaigns with Performance Max to drive the strongest conversion and ROI performance across Google’s channels. Together, these form the Ads Power Pair.

Most retailers advertising with Google are already using Performance Max and seeing great results. And beyond retail, advertisers who adopt Performance Max see an average increase of 27% more conversions or value at a similar CPA/ROAS. This is even when they already use broad match and Smart Bidding in their Search campaigns.1 Today, we're introducing new innovations that give you more control over your ads in Performance Max, and more transparency into where they appear and how they're performing. Our latest creative tools also make it possible to exponentially scale your assets and their variety, while staying true to your brand.

Create visually engaging ads that are on brand

  •  Advancing our image generation technology in Performance Max and Demand Gen campaigns. We’ve tuned these models with performance data that includes your specific industry. This gives you generative AI tools that are purpose-built for advertising. Your data, together with Google’s data, are the core ingredients to help you generate high-quality, performant assets. These improved capabilities will start rolling out in the coming months. 
  • Create high-performing ads that meet your brand standards. Later in the year, you’ll be able to provide Google AI with your brand guidelines, including your brand colors and font, in order to serve more on-brand ads to customers across different formats and channels. You’ll also see options to upload example images as a reference point for generative AI to create new images that match your visual style. And if you already have assets you know perform well, create additional on-brand variants using the “Generate more like this” feature.

Brand guidelines section in the Google Ads UICreate high-performing ads with Google AI while making sure they meet your brand standards

  • Bring your own products front and center with AI-powered image editing. In the coming weeks, you'll be able to edit images—including product images from your Google Merchant Center feed—across Performance Max and other campaign types. We’ll also be adding the ability for all advertisers to add and remove objects, extend backgrounds, and adjust images to fit any size, orientation, and aspect ratio. If you need more options, AI-generated images will also appear in recommendations for Performance Max that show your products in new contexts and scenes—including lifestyle imagery. These recommendations will start rolling out in a few months to select product categories.

Edit image section in Google AdsBring your own products front and center with AI-powered image editing

  • Easily collaborate across Google Ads and third-party creative platforms. We’ve established various partnerships with creative platforms like Canva, Smartly, and Pencil Pro, with more partnerships coming in the future. Canva, Smartly, and Pencil Pro provide integrations with the asset library. Now, your creative teams can easily create assets in other platforms and export them to Google Ads.

Get more insight into your performance and areas of opportunity

  • See where your ads serve on YouTube. Ensure your brand shows up exactly where you want it, and nowhere you don’t, with improvements to Performance Max placement reporting. Going forward, we'll now surface YouTube videos in placement reports to improve transparency into where your Performance Max ads are showing on YouTube—and offer exclusions to keep you in control over where your brand appears.
  • Understand which assets perform best. With asset-level reporting coming to Performance Max in the coming months, you’ll be able to see key conversion metrics for each creative asset to help you understand what’s resonating with consumers.
  • Test the impact of adding more creative assets to your campaign. Experimentation is key to optimizing your Google Ads campaigns. Later this year, retailers will be able to test and measure the conversion uplift of including additional image, video, and text assets in Performance Max campaigns beyond their product feeds.
  • Measure incrementality with conversion lift studies. Conversion lift studies can help you answer the question: “Did your campaign really make a difference, or would those customers have converted anyway?” These privacy-preserving experiments give you rigorous proof for causality so you can trust the incrementality of your campaigns. Over time, you’ll know what moves the needle and what doesn’t, and can invest accordingly. Conversion lift studies will roll out globally in the coming months—in the meantime, reach out to your Google team to join the beta.  
  • Troubleshoot issues with revamped diagnostic insights. Later this year, we’re introducing a new diagnostics experience for Performance Max, Demand Gen, Search, Video, and Display campaigns. This will unify insights across areas like bidding, assets, conversion setup, and billing into a single view, with the option to drill in for more details. Diagnostic insights are also expanding to your campaign-level Overview. Critical issues will be immediately flagged at the top of the page, so you can easily check whether your campaign is working as intended. 

Hit the ground running with Performance Max

  • Get the best of Google all-in-one with Performance Max campaigns, the new default campaign type for new advertisers. Performance Max can deliver results using the best of Google AI, and connects you with customers no matter where they’re exploring. That’s why it’s now the recommended campaign type for most businesses starting their advertising journey with Google.

 

 Search

Today, we’re sharing how we’re applying the latest advancements in generative AI to help ads on Google Search do more than we ever imagined—from creating new, immersive experiences that guide consumers through complex purchase decisions to integrating ads directly inside AI Overviews. We’re also improving Google Ads to help you reach more customers as they engage with these new Search experiences. For example, in the last six months, AI-driven improvements to quality, relevance, and language understanding have improved broad match performance by 10% for advertisers using Smart Bidding.2

Find untapped demand in new Search ad experiences

  • Engage directly with visually-inspired consumers with Shopping ads in Google Lens and Circle to Search results. To create a more helpful experience, over the next few months Shopping ads will start showing at the top of visual search results when consumers use Google Lens3 or Circle to Search4. This new ad experience in visual search results will allow you to showcase your products when they’re relevant to the photos and screenshots that people search with.

Example Shopping ad with a suitcase
Over the next few months, Shopping ads will start showing at the top of visual search results when consumers use Google Lens or Circle to Search

  • Unlock new interactive ad experiences with Search ads that provide AI-powered recommendations. Search ads can now be more than offers by delivering interactive, AI-powered experiences that provide personalized recommendations—setting a new bar for what a helpful ad can be. For example, create a whole new way for customers to express demand where they can share more about what they want through multimodal inputs like photos and receive tailored recommendations. This experience will be tested with select advertisers in the U.S. over the coming weeks.

Example search "short term storage" 
Unlock new interactive ad experiences with Search ads that provide AI-powered recommendations

  • Reach consumers in new moments of exploration with ads integrated into AI Overviews. At I/O, we announced that AI Overviews are rolling out to everyone in the U.S., with more countries coming soon. In early testing, we’ve heard that people find the ads appearing above and below the AI-generated overview helpful. Soon, we’ll start testing Search and Shopping ads in AI Overviews for users in the U.S. Your ads from existing AI-powered Search and Performance Max campaigns will have the opportunity to appear within the AI Overview in a section clearly labeled as “Sponsored” when they’re relevant to both the query and the information in the AI Overview. By showing ads directly in AI Overviews, consumers will have more opportunities to discover relevant products and services, and take action as they learn about things your business can help with.

    We’ll start with a small experiment in the U.S. and take a responsible approach, applying learnings from user, advertiser, and publisher feedback.

Example search "how do i get wrinkles out of clothes"
Reach consumers in new moments of exploration. Soon, we’ll start testing Search and Shopping ads in AI Overviews for users in the U.S.

Build better Search campaigns with less effort

  • Create optimized Search campaigns with the conversational experience in Google Ads. Last year, we announced the conversational experience in Google Ads to help you create the ideal Search campaign set-up with just one URL from your website—complete with the right broad match keywords and assets. As a result, we’ve seen that small business advertisers that use the conversational experience in Google Ads are 63% more likely to publish Search campaigns with ‘Good’ or ‘Excellent’ Ad Strength.5

 

Demand Gen

If you want to invest in more visual storytelling, use Demand Gen campaigns to help maximize your presence on YouTube, Shorts, Discover, and Gmail. Create new demand and drive conversions on Google’s most immersive and entertainment-oriented surfaces where people stream, scroll, and connect. On average, advertisers who added Demand Gen to their Search and/or Performance Max campaigns saw 14% more conversions.6 Today, we’re announcing new ways to optimize performance at scale, deliver visually engaging ads, and reach more qualified customers.

Optimize performance at scale

  •  Run Demand Gen campaigns from the Google Marketing Platform. Demand Gen is rolling out to Display & Video 360 and Search Ads 360 in the coming months, with optimization powered by your Floodlight measurement setup.

Deliver visually engaging ads and control where they show

  • Drive more engagement with animated image ads for Demand Gen campaigns. Retailers with a Merchant Center account can now serve animated image ads on YouTube Shorts in addition to video ads. Animated image ads will be automatically generated using images from your product feeds to help you showcase relevant products based on customer interest.

Example image ad
Showcase relevant products with animated image ads on YouTube Shorts

 

  • Pin your video assets to control where they show. With creative preferences rolling out in the coming weeks, you’ll be able to pin video assets to specific surfaces in your Demand Gen campaigns, giving you more control over where video assets show up. For example, if you’ve developed an ad with a creator that’s really popular on Shorts, you can pin it to YouTube Shorts so it shows up there more often. We’re exploring how to bring these controls to other video campaigns based on what we learn from Demand Gen.

Video asset pinning in the Google Ads UIPin your video assets to specific surfaces that you prefer

Reach more qualified customers

  • Connect with new audiences that are similar to your existing customers. Lookalike segments are only available in Demand Gen campaigns, and in the coming weeks, we’re making it easier for smaller companies to create them by lowering the minimum required list size from 1,000 to just 100 users. Today, you can discover new insights about your Lookalike segments, such as affinity categories, in-market categories, age, gender, geography, devices, and more.
 

Retail and Commerce

Shoppers today are demanding and discerning, caring deeply about great content and the amazing brands behind them. Today, we’re sharing new ways Google AI can help you create more helpful shopping connections, deliver stronger ROI and customer loyalty, gain more insight into your customers, and make your apps more shoppable.

Create more helpful shopping connections

  • Create videos and product visuals in seconds with Google AI. To help you create beautiful on-brand product imagery and connect more deeply with shoppers online, later this year you‘ll be able to use Product Studio to transform static photos into eye-catching videos. Instantly generate visuals that match your brand’s style from just one reference image. 
  • Highlight your brand's unique story with the visual brand profile on Google Search, showcasing your images, videos, and promotions. We’ll roll the profile out in the coming months. Ads will continue to appear on the page along with the brand profile.
  • Boost shopper confidence and drive product discovery with video highlights. Later this year, we’ll be working with a small group of advertisers to introduce a new immersive experience in Shopping ads for select apparel and beauty categories. This experience invites shoppers to explore curated short videos from your brand, discover helpful customer quotes about a product, and browse additional brand offerings.

Example search "activewear mini dress"
Boost shopper confidence through your Shopping ads with video highlights

  • Showcase your apparel on a diverse set of models. In the coming months, we’re launching virtual try-on in Shopping ads for men’s and women’s tops. This experience will help shoppers see how your clothes fit on a variety of body types to build the confidence to buy.
  • Engage potential buyers with compelling imagery and relevant product details. In the coming months, potential customers will be able to see a 360 view of your shoes from a Shopping ad. Simply provide a few product images, then Google AI will create a 3D spin of your footwear. Your Shopping ads will also become even more informative by automatically surfacing key product information from your website and positive highlights from customer reviews.

Example search "cool sneakers"
A 3D spin of your shoes generated in your ads using just a few product images

 

Deliver stronger ROI and customer loyalty

  • Maximize profit using the profit optimization goal in Smart Bidding. In the coming months, you’ll be able to optimize for profit with your Performance Max and Standard Shopping campaigns using data from your cart-level conversions and cost of goods sold in Merchant Center. Google AI will prioritize ad placements that help drive higher profits for your business.
  • Drive sales from loyalty members. With Performance Max and Standard Shopping campaigns, you can make your loyalty program your competitive differentiator. In the coming months, you’ll have a brand new way to tailor promotions in your Shopping ads, such as highlighting member-only exclusive offers or special pricing. 
  • Differentiate your Shopping ads for new customers. With new customer pricing, it’s easy to stand out and differentiate your offerings for potential customers who may still be on the fence. Starting later this year, you’ll be able to feature first order promotions for new customers directly in Shopping ads from Performance Max and Standard Shopping campaigns.  
  • Include AI-powered dynamic sale pricing in Shopping ads. Later this year, we'll roll out an enhancement that lets you automatically update your Shopping ads with optimal prices based on sales from your online store to help you maximize profits and drive more purchases. This new feature will be available through Merchant Center and third-party platforms like Shopify and WooCommerce.
  • Show ads that feature redeemable coupons. To help you drive more store visits and in-store sales, you can now feature coupons when you add promotion assets to your Performance Max campaigns for store goals. This feature is available globally, except EU countries, EU Member State Territories, and EEA countries. 

Gain more insight into your customers

  • Get actionable performance insights in Merchant Center Next with Google AI. In the coming months, you'll start seeing tailored, generated insights as concise snippets directly in Merchant Center Next, offering performance guidance and outlining recommended next steps. You'll also be able to describe your desired report in plain language and get it instantly with visual insights. 
  • Get more category-based insights for your Shopping ads. Later this year, we’re rolling out category-level performance insights and demand trends with competitive benchmarks in Performance Max and Standard Shopping campaigns. These insights will include actionable recommendations to help you find optimization opportunities and help you drive more performance.
  • Scale client management for agencies. Agency users now have a single point of entry in Merchant Center that helps them quickly assess their client portfolio, prioritize actions, and maximize client performance. This feature is currently available to select agencies and will roll out to more later this year.

Make your apps more shoppable

  • Showcase your products on Discover inventory with App campaigns. When you connect your Merchant Center feeds with App campaigns, your ads will now be eligible to serve in a carousel format on Discover inventory to help you connect with more potential customers. 
  • Create more relevant, tailored ads for App campaigns. To make it easier for you to create tightly-themed ad groups with more relevant and tailored ads, we’re rolling out ad group feed filtering capabilities in the Google Ads UI over the next few weeks.
  • Showcase promotion assets with App campaign ads. You can now feature promotion assets in your App campaign ads to help you highlight promotions and sales. These assets will show with your ads when they serve on Display and YouTube inventory. 
  • Automatically update bids in App campaigns based on promotional events. To help you drive more performance from your App campaigns, you can now apply bid changes automatically based on details you provide about upcoming promotional events. Seasonality adjustments are currently available at the campaign level and will be rolling out at the ad group level in the coming months. 
  • Find more loyal shoppers with audience signals in App campaigns. To help you find more high-value shoppers, you can now link a range of audience lists, including your first-party audience lists, to your App campaigns. Google AI will learn from your input and show your ads to shoppers that are more likely to convert.

 

YouTube

YouTube is the best place for advertisers to not just efficiently drive reach, but build connections with engaged viewers for any marketing objective. Today, we’re announcing innovations that will help you inspire more viewers to take action and gain a deeper understanding of where your ads appear.

Inspire more viewers to take action

  • Make your Shorts ads more interactive with stickers. In the next few months, we’ll be introducing stickers to Shorts ads to help you make your ads more interactive and increase conversion potential in a way that feels native to the Shorts experience. We’ll pull existing elements from your product feed, app store listings, or information from your ad campaigns and show them as clickable stickers on top of your Shorts ads. 
  • Engage with more people watching Shorts. In the coming months, we're enabling ads to match the mindset of viewers watching Shorts, like the ability to swipe left to get to a landing page within YouTube, or the option to double tap to like. We’ll also give Shorts ad viewers the chance to discover your long-form content elsewhere on YouTube. 
  • Sell more products with creators and the expanded YouTube Shopping affiliate program. This program allows eligible YouTube creators to easily tag products in their videos, Shorts, and live streams, making it possible for viewers to shop while they watch. Later this year, Shopify Plus and Advanced merchants in the U.S. will be able to join the program, seamlessly sync their products to YouTube, and get access to insights showing which creators and content are driving sales.
  • Promote creator-made videos as YouTube ads. With our new partnership ads powered by BrandConnect, in the next few months you’ll be able to bring the excitement and innovation of creators right into your campaigns. You’ll also be able to create new audience segments based on viewers of those videos.

Gain a deeper understanding of your where your ads appear

  • Get more insight into where your YouTube ads show. Based on industry adjacency standards, now you can see the content your ads run between across various YouTube environments—including Shorts. Additionally, trusted and independent third-party partners can now access and report on Shorts ad placements across campaign types. You can also manage where your ads appear with refined placement and thematic exclusions on YouTube in-stream, and now YouTube Shorts.

 

Measurement and Audiences

By investing in measurement and audience solutions, you can create a durable foundation that fuels your AI to deliver long-term business outcomes for your marketing strategy. Today, we’re introducing new solutions that will help you streamline your data management, connect with more qualified customers, and uncover new insights. 

Streamline your data management and connect with more qualified customers

  • Tap into your data’s full potential. Now available to everyone, you can use Google Ads Data Manager to simplify the process of using your first-party data. With just a few clicks, you can connect with partners like Salesforce, BigQuery, and Google Cloud Storage to enable solutions like enhanced conversions or Customer Match.
  • Optimize campaigns using the new customer acquisition goal with Google Analytics. Campaigns using the new customer acquisition goal rely on an array of Google Ads signals to distinguish between new and existing customers. Later this year, you'll be able to automatically add Google Analytics signals to the mix to improve the models that power this goal—making it easier to get started and drive performance.
  • Manage your campaign budgets across channels more effectively. To better understand where to invest your budgets, we’re launching cross-channel budgeting in Google Analytics as a beta later this year. With this update, you’ll be able to track campaign pacing and projected performance across channels—and get recommendations.  
  • Re-engage customers who have interacted with your business. Later this year, we’re rolling out Google-engaged audiences—a new data segment consisting of people who visited your website from the search results page or ads on Google surfaces. This audience segment will automatically become available in eligible accounts.

Uncover new insights to make more informed decisions

  • Make faster, more informed decisions with generated insights. In the next few months, Google Analytics insight cards will be powered by generative AI to surface trends and significant changes in your data, proactively offering helpful explanations and recommendations in plain language. 
  • Get quicker reports and insights in Google Ads and Search Ads 360. To help you get faster answers in Google Ads and Search Ads 360, you’ll be able to use a simple prompt to filter your data and build reports with visuals effortlessly. This will start rolling out in a few months for English-language users.
  • Ensure you have the right measurement foundations in place. Get personalized recommendations with Measurement Diagnostics, a new hub launching in the next few months where you can validate and troubleshoot your measurement setup directly in Google Ads and Campaign Manager 360. View your measurement durability and readiness in one place so you can build and activate your first-party data.
  • Empower your teams to build best-in-class Marketing Mix Models and drive better business outcomes. Meridian, our open source MMM, will roll out globally later this year to help you measure the impact of your marketing strategy more confidently—helping you make more informed decisions. 
  • Benchmark your performance against similar businesses. Later this year, we’re rolling out a new feature in Google Analytics 4 that will help you understand how your performance stacks up against businesses similar to yours. With these insights, you’ll be able to make informed decisions on where to invest your time and resources.
  • Measure across the full funnel and channels. Later this year, Google Analytics 4 will integrate with linked Campaign Manager 360 accounts to bring aggregate impressions into your advertising workspace, giving you more insight into your brand’s performance across the funnel. Additionally, we’re making it simpler to import non-Google campaign data into Analytics. That means you’ll be able to authenticate reporting APIs from Pinterest, Reddit and Snap directly in your Analytics property using cost data import

 

Apps

App campaigns allow you to drive better engagement with your mobile users across Google’s surfaces. Today’s announcements will help you drive even more performance from Search and Performance Max campaigns with your app as well as better measure the impact of App campaigns more effectively.

Drive more performance from Search and Performance Max campaigns with your app

  • Deliver more in-app conversions with Web to App Connect. On average, Web to App Connect delivers a 2x higher conversion rate for clicks that land on your app versus your mobile website.7 To make it easier to adopt Web to App Connect, Google Ads will now provide customized nudges and recommendations when you create Search, Performance Max, or Shopping campaigns. Over the next few months, Web to App Connect will also roll out for Video, Hotel, and Demand Gen ads on both Android and iOS devices.

Measure the impact of your App campaigns more effectively

  • Measure the incrementality of your App campaigns. You can now set up geo-based, controlled experiments to more accurately measure the incremental ROI of your iOS and Android App campaign spend.8 These privacy-centric experiments can be easily set up in Google Ads, and work seamlessly with your Google Analytics 4 events or uploaded first-party data to report results.

 

AI Essentials in Optimization Score and Recommendations

Ensure your business has the essentials it needs for success with Google AI.

  • See where you stand and take action on the Google Ads AI Essentials with optimization score and recommendations. Now, there’s a new ‘AI Essentials’ category on the Recommendations page, designed to highlight opportunities to improve your optimization score in just a few clicks. We observed that advertisers who increased their account-level optimization score by at least 10 points saw an average 15% increase in conversions.9

 

Posted by The Google Marketing Live Team

 

1. Google Internal Data, Oct. 2023 to Nov. 2023. 
2. Google Internal Data, October 2023 - March 2024. Performance refers to conversions/conversion value at constant ROI
3. Google Lens results may vary depending on visual matches. Requires internet connection. 
4. Circle to Search is available on select devices and internet connection required. Works on compatible apps and surfaces. Results may vary depending on visual matches.
5. Google internal data,
2023-11-07 – 2024-01-17 US/UK, Search campaigns published using the conversational experience in Google Ads vs Search campaigns published not using the experience, excluding fraudster accounts.
2024-01-24 – 2024-03-14 Global, English Search campaigns with English landing pages published using the conversational experience in Google Ads vs English Search campaigns with English landing pages published not using the experience, excluding fraudster accounts.
6. Google Internal Data, April - May 2024.
7. Google internal data, Feb - March 2022 experiment.
8. You can get access to geo-based experiments through your Account Manager if your App campaigns target select countries: Brazil, France, Germany, Japan, Netherlands, Spain, UK, or US. More countries will roll out later this year. 
9. Google internal data, 2023-24.

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