August 2023 Digital Marketing News You Can Use

Google Renames ‘In-Stream’ Video Ads Amid YouTube Controversy

Topic: Online advertising

Key Point: Google’s TrueView campaigns hit a raw nerve with advertisers after an Adalytics report found that about 75% of ads served didn’t meet the promised standards. Instead of premium in-stream placement, it seems TrueView sent most of the ads to “lesser display surfaces.” 

Google says the Adalytics report is inaccurate, but renamed “in-stream ads” to “skippable ads,” to clear up confusion. That should cover the alternative placement complaints … or will it? 

Despite the denial, Google sent refunds and credits to certain clients. For the rest of the misled advertisers, a class-action lawsuit is in the works. Will this event get Google deeper into regulatory oversight?

X, formerly known as Twitter Tells Advertisers That Promoted Accounts Are Over

Topic: Online advertising | Social media

Key Point: Promoted accounts can no longer use the timeline to grow their brands on X. The aim is to  “optimize the X experience by prioritizing content formats,” according to an email from X obtained by Axios.

Promoted accounts appeared on the X timeline “as text-based posts, along with a ‘Follow’ button, enabling users to start following brands with minimal effort.” X says the company will find “alternative routes” to meet these goals. Currently, X suggests advertisers check other ad products like reach campaigns and engagement campaigns.

Many marketers say Elon Musk is ruining what used to be Twitter. Others are excited to see what unfolds. Which camp are you in?


Google Rolls Out AI Search Upgrades Focused On Education

Topic: AI | Search

Key Point: Users who opted into Google’s AI-powered Search Generative Experience (SGE) can now see definitions and diagrams in SGE — a move Google says will help users learn more about the topic. The AI-generated content will clarify concepts and help searchers understand the terminology used in the response. The essential information will be provided.

Google says this about the move: “You’ll be able to hover over certain words to preview definitions and see related diagrams or images on the topic. From here, you can tap to learn more.”

Topics addressed include science, technology, engineering, mathematics, history, economics, and others. The upgrade to SGE is in addition to the current content covering programming languages and tools.

To opt into all features, go to Google Search Labs and make sure SGE is turned on.


Topic: Digital marketing technology

Key Point: The founder of a technology analyst firm says the “struggles are more common than the success stories” in marketing technology (martech). To prove that point, this article lists myths every marketer needs to recognize (and learn from).

You’ll want to study the list for yourself, but we’ll bait the hook by describing one of them — the myth that “You must always personalize.” Martech gurus tend toward the idea that personalization is always the preferred method, but that may not be the case.

The author and analyst says this about a roundtable discussion on the topic:

Personalization program outcomes frequently varied by channel and call to action. For example, email and e-commerce personalization tended to yield higher ROI than website personalization, which sometimes exhibited even negative returns.

The bottom line: “Provide what your customers really want, not what you think they want.”


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