Google is always coming out with new things. Beta tests, closed betas, open betas, where to display ads, how to display ads and so on and so forth, but recently one caught my eye. As a search marketer who specializes in display advertising, Google AdWords new “Search companion marketing” seemed rather interesting to me. After a few calls, emails and countless searches contradicting each other, I finally got a bit more information on this.
As we all know retargeting is a very useful tool. Retargeting targets users who we know have already expressed an interest in the product or item you are advertising by visiting the website. Search Companion Marketing takes this one step further and allows you to target ads based on search queries all across the GDN (Google Display Network). So no matter whether they are using Google, Bing, or Yahoo, (as long as the destination site is in the GDN) your ads can appear.
This is how companion targeting is supposed to work: When a user types a search query into any of the mentioned search engines the usual paid ads will appear. The user will click on the ad that appears most relevant to them. From there your period of stealthily targeting the user begins. As long as the landing page is within the GDN and you have an ad group set up for this search query, your ad has the opportunity of displaying. Then, even once the user has left that page, your keyword-targeted ads will continue to appear on other pages within the GDN they have moved on to. This type of targeting is bringing together what the users have expressed an interest in and what you have to offer by reminding them for hours after what they “really want.” Since we know the user is interested in what you have to offer, this should increase your CTR and improve your ROI.
The catch? You must have an account manager at Google set it up for you, you may not advertise on sensitive topics, and you cannot be a Google competitor. Other than that you are ready to go. Happy Advertising!