If you are running a campaign or planning to launch one, these ideas will come in handy. The truth is, in advertising, there is nothing written and the ads have to adapt to more visual formats and a more demanding audience. We hope to give you some new ideas and that you can put a lot of them into practice and of course that you can ask us any questions and give us your opinion in the comments.
Creative advertising vs Adblock and spam
We know that 50% of the population uses the internet and e-commerce is growing, currently 29% shop online once a week. At the same time, 615 million devices are using Adblock or similar. This has serious consequences for businesses. In 2016, the loss was estimated at $ 41 billion and from 2015 to 2016, the use of ad blockers increased by 30%.
As advertisers, that’s something that should give us pause, don’t you think?
On the one hand, there are the possibilities and the reasoning that if online shopping has increased, it is because there is a demand for thousands of products and services. We also have advanced targeting tools, but they don’t seem to work. Users “block ads” and many believe that behind a beautiful message there is nothing more than a trap. Why not make better use of personalized audiences? What are we doing wrong, we brands?
- Maybe we are obsessed with results and let the creativity out.
- Perhaps we have lost sight of the real needs of these potential customers.
- Maybe we abuse remarketing and expose too many ads to the same people.
- Maybe there is too much competition and too many brands advertising the same thing at the same time.
Is it possible to do better? I think it does and the ad doesn’t have to be negative if you take care of the message, format, targeting, and frequency.
Good advertising generates CTR and sales. Good advertising is simple, witty, and creative.
14 creative techniques for making ads in Adwords and social networks.
Many of them focus on SEM but most are ideas applicable to any project. Below I explain the tips in writing with more information and examples:
Test multiple audiences and ads on Facebook
Objective: test which advertisement and which audience is the most profitable
The advantage of social media advertising is that you can target based on the behaviors, interests, and demographics of your target audience. Facebook allows you to create your audiences, with remarketing or emails, and you can also create an audience from scratch with all the information they have about users.
Most companies test a few audiences in an a / b experiment, sometimes targeting men, sometimes women, sometimes by age, sometimes by geographic location, etc. That’s great, but if you want to take your campaigns to the next level, it’s not enough.
The image you add to your ad and the text you add to entice them to participate or click on your website also come into play. So why wonder what and who to show the ad when you can test hundreds? options?
You can do this with Facebook or Power Editor, but it would take a long time. Adespresso is a tool that helps you create multiple combinations of ads and audiences from a single campaign. Large companies use it to test different niche markets and find the most profitable ones, but also to test multiple advertising formats. The initial idea may be to test with small budgets (€ 20-30 per campaign) and then invest more in the ads and audiences that work better.
When you create a campaign, you can add multiple variations of:
- Titles or headlines (what will appear in the caption)
- Advertising texts (what will appear before the photo)
- Images or videos (or design them from Canva)
- Landing pages or URLs
- CTA buttons
- Save multiple audiences or create a new one
I recommend 2 or 3 of each option because if you add too many, the tool won’t save the changes properly, allowing you to compare and draw conclusions later.
Combine DSA campaign subtype + remarketing list
Goal: Attract users who left your website without purchasing with dynamic text advertising and a specific landing page (perfect for eCommerce).
DSA campaigns dynamically present ads to users, making it easier for e-commerce companies with hundreds or thousands of products to create groups and ads. DSA ads are not triggered by keywords but are activated based on organic content on our website.
On the other hand, remarketing helps you to list users who visit your website based on their behavior, i.e. you can categorize them by “site visitors”, “site visitors who bought, Or “site visitors who have not purchased”. The latter is the most interesting for this type of campaign. The goal is to ‘buy back’ them again with an ad and a special homepage so that they end up buying. To do this, you must:
- Create a specific and very attractive page: include promotions, discounts, and CTa that grab their attention.
- You also need to optimize the website from an SEO perspective so that the ad title works well.
- Create an advertising group as part of the DSA campaign
- Add special offers or discounts in the listing description
- Include in the advertisement the URL of the special home page with the offers.
- Include the remarketing tag on the website, create the list and add it to the campaign.
In Adwords, combine DSA + Remarketing to attract those who have abandoned you with dynamic ads.
Create targeted destination URLs for undecided users
Objective: to make relevant but generic keywords as profitable as specific keywords.
When we do Google Adwords search campaigns, it’s all about keywords. It depends on their willingness to show the advertisement to users with a firm intention to buy (adult users) or undecided people (immature users). The immature user is not sure what he wants and should be guided towards the purchase. Let’s see a real case:
Suppose the customer owns an online bicycle store. It has a variety of models but is mainly specialized in triathlon and BMX bikes. When users search for “triathlon bike” in Google, the client redirects them to a home page with triathlon bikes, but when they search for “sportbikes” it redirects them to a general home page with all models to choose from. After a few days, it detects that both have a good CTR (generates traffic) but the generic “sports bikes” do not generate conversions.
To optimize the campaign and continue to benefit from the traffic and visibility of the word “bikes for sports”, we can group these types of keywords in a different group, with ads and with a specific unindexed home page (to avoid duplicates) prepared to receive the immature user. The goal will be to resolve their possible doubts about the best and most suitable type of bike for them by making a page where valuable content predominates (non-commercial) using writing tips with CTA while highlighting and linking the customer’s main products.
Duplicate landing pages to improve CTR and Headword Quality Score, but without converting
Ideas for a perfect homepage
The goal: to keep users on your website longer and get more conversions.
Often the problem with a campaign is not in its setup, often what fails is the page we take users to after receiving a click on the ad. We’ve already seen how important it is to tailor content to users’ keywords, and we’ve also seen that you can experiment with different landings in case you’re in doubt about which one will convert the best. This is something you should consider if you have clicks but few conversions.
If you’re in doubt about how to target your landing page content, here are some tips:
- Show your product clearly and simply at the top of the page
- Make sure they understand the benefits, uses, and benefits of leasing or purchasing your product.
- Display the CTA well using color contrast, (the buttons that allow them to continue with the buying process).
- Show pictures of happy customers so new customers can see what they can get with your product.
- Set up a chat to be able to answer questions on the spot.
- Offer rewards at the end of the purchase process
- Visualize the offers and price reductions
- Generate urgency at specific times with deadlines for discounts or products.
Optimize and invest in your landing pages to have better quality levels and + conversions.
Landing Page Audit Tools
Objective: to have data on the performance of your landing pages to modify and adjust the content if necessary
The next idea I suggest to improve your campaigns is to do a free audit of your home page to find out if there is anything you can improve and also find out, if you have more than one, what is the page that works best. There are many such tools out there, but you can try these two free tools:
To use it, you need to link your Google Adwords account. After registering, you may know interesting things like
- The conversion rate of the pages
- The degree of efficiency and a conversion rate compared with the sector
- The relevance of the content of the page
- The relationship between the costliest pages and the best or worst converting pages
- Efficiency on mobile devices
It is also free and you can take a 21 question test on your pages. Based on your answer, you will find out how well you optimized factors such as relevance, user intent, details, benefits of your product, calls to action, distractions, and ease. of use during a purchase or registration process.
One keyword per ad group
Objective: determine the quality score of relevant keywords and get better positions for less money.
This idea breaks the patterns of Google Adwords, but it is extremely effective. It consists of creating groups with unique keywords, that is to say in creating groups where a single word activates the ad instead of using between 15 and 20 as Adwords advises. When we do this, the Quality Score for that word quickly reaches the highest values, between 9/10 and 10/10. This automatically improves the position of the ad for that keyword and therefore the CTR. As if that weren’t enough, you can also benefit in terms of cost as you keep the position even if you lower the CPC offer.
Do I have to do this with all the keywords? No, only the ones that are most relevant to your homepage and where you find the most competitive. You can have relevant groups of multiple keywords and other specific groups with a single keyword. The fun part of the experience is that you will be able to compare which group gives you the best CTR and conversions. A few things to keep in mind as part of this strategy:
- Remember to pause the word in one group and activate it in the other so that it is not duplicated.
- Use multiple matches per keyword. Example: “skating lessons”, + skating lessons, + skating lessons, [skating lessons].
- Advertise with the keyword in Headline 1 and the visible paths of the URL.
- Create a keyword-specific home page to boost the quality score.
Creative advertising formats
Objective: to differentiate ourselves from our competitors with different advertising formats, advanced and adapted to mobile devices.
Competition on Facebook is increasing and so is Google Adwords Display, Shopping, or any other paid channel. A simple drawing is not enough anymore and you need to think very carefully about what text, video, or image you are going to use to show your products. Well, you need to tailor the message to the target audience (male, female, age, etc.) so that the campaign works as a whole and you can achieve your goals.
There are three ad formats and three click-through rate or CTR tips that you can try:
- Carousels: are advertisements formed by a sequence of images or videos with which you can show a product in different colors, pan, or embed a story that challenges the user to uncover a story related to your product.
- Cinematography: it’s the perfect mix between an image, a gif, and a video. To achieve them you have to record a video but in fact, the result shown in the advertisement is an image with something moving. It’s an effect that captures the user’s attention and a great format for branding. They can be done with Photoshop or with specific tools. The most expensive but also the most advanced at the moment is Flixel (Cinemagraph Pro) for mac or ios but there are also free alternatives like Cinemagraph for android.
- Canvas: is an exclusive advertising format for mobile phones with which you can show several of your products, incorporate buttons, links, and that we appreciate as if it were a magazine in several directions: from left to the right, from top to bottom by sliding with the fingers.
- Calls to action with images: To get more clicks on your ads, you can try playing with the appearance of the people in the photo and using the color contrast between the product and the “buy” button. This will increase attention to the most important phrases or words.
Shared budgets in Adwords
Objective: optimize a small budget when you want to test a lot of things at the same time in Adwords.
Sometimes, with 20 euros per day, you try to achieve several goals within the framework of Google Adwords and it is difficult because you may have to do 4 campaigns and you have to divide those 20 euros between the 4, 2 there, 4 there, 5 in another… Some are likely starting to be limited on budget and this equates to losing impressions and therefore the possibility of having clicks.
Shared budgets are generated in the Google Adwords shared library and created as if they were the customer’s main budget, which is what you want them to spend per day. Then you have to tell each campaign in the account to use the shared budget so that it is distributed among all of them so that the campaign that needs it gets more money. That way, those who have more requested words and get more clicks won’t be limited.
Display advertising competition spy tool
The goal: to know where your competitors are placing their ads and to see what colors, designs, and messages they use to differentiate you.
Knowing what your competitors’ ads look like in Google Search isn’t a mystery, but with Display ads it is. One of the options that Google’s display network has is the ability to choose placements (publishers or placements), so imagine the benefits of having access to a study of your competitors’ placements.
Semrush has a display advertising beta feature. It’s worth it if you want to research multiple domains, know their publishers or advertisers, and directly see examples of your competitor’s creatives, as well as what percentage they’re using text ads, HML5 ads, or media.
Objective: optimize the advertising texts and the targeting of certain campaigns to capture traffic and conversions only from mobile devices.
We know that 80% of Spaniards use smartphones and 60% of searches are done from mobile. If we add to this the fact that 42% of them access their social networks with their mobile phone, that’s clear, isn’t it? Something has to be done to take advantage of this opportunity.
The creative idea at this stage is to add value to the use of the cell phone, from our advertising. To do this, you can target mobile-only ads and write ad copy knowing that the user will only see it from mobile. Perhaps that will appeal to the younger audience and we will get a conversion without waiting for them to come home and use a laptop or computer.
You can use 2 headings or descriptions like:
- “Learn now from your mobile”
- “Book without waiting from your mobile”
- “With your mobile in 2 minutes”
- “Everything is easier from your mobile”
Objective: to share information between partner companies to create remarketing audiences.
Co-marketing is an idea based on mutual benefit between two or more companies. It consists of sharing the relevant data appearing in the various Google Analytics dashboards to create advanced segments and personalized audiences which can then be used in Google Adwords. Also, all information relating to the demographic data of these visitors.
This collaboration can occur between sites or franchises of the same company, but also between apparently opposing brands. Imagine an online store for organic products and now imagine an online store for natural cosmetics. Both want to increase their sales and have thought of Remarketing. One only sells food and the other only sells makeup and in both cases, they are targeting a similar audience. Why compete with each other when they can complement each other?
The re-marketing lists can be exported and imported into different Adwords accounts. This way, you would reach a much larger specific target audience by adding traffic from both websites.
There are hundreds of cases where this might work:
- Between a head office and small franchises
- Between companies in the same sector that are not direct competitors
- Between new companies or startups
- Between complementary local businesses
Other Adwords optimization tools
Objective: to know which campaigns need to be improved and to audit our mobile page.
Word possibilities tool
You should always take some time out of the week to do a full review of your campaigns. In the case of Google Adwords, we have free and easy-to-implement options. The “Opportunities” window works like a checklist of the things you have good things about and those you need to improve. There may be some optimization ideas that you might have to give up because of your goals or budget, but most of them will be of great benefit to you.
Among the possibilities, you have a new feature in beta mode that you can use to optimize your search campaigns. It serves as a guide to go over what actions you have done well and other campaigns that need improvement. You can also see what percentage you were successful in optimizing the campaign for and highlight in orange those that have potential but are not profitable. And it can help you draw conclusions and compare the CTR, CPC, and cost/conversion of each.
This is another free tool that lets you know how effective your website or homepage is on different mobile devices. It gives you a general rating and a list of possible optimizations, as well as an explanation of how to fix them.
Ads on Youtube
Objective: take advantage of recommendation marketing from YouTubers and target products on specific videos.
Buy Ads on Youtube Another way to target your campaigns can be by advertising products on Youtube channels and videos. These are called Youtube or TrueView ads for shopping. The idea is to show your products in related videos and in videos where Youtube users recommend your product.
You can also target marketing if you want to show the product list on Youtube to people who have visited your website before.
If you are already using the Google Shopping network, it is very easy because you can reuse the same feed, and if not, you have to register in the Google shopping center to create the data for your products. Once the feed is created, you need to create a video campaign with the subtype “shopping”. You can then select specific products (by Product ID or URL) or create specific filters within a specific category or brand if you have a lot of products.
Ads with YouTubers, Instagramers, and Bloggers
Objective: to establish business relationships with influential profiles who talk about the products and recommend them.
Relationships between brands and “celebrities” have been around forever, but in most cases, they exceed the budgets of entrepreneurs or small businesses. You can turn that idea around and instead of appealing to TV celebrities, engage influencers and people with large numbers of social media followers.
You can search for bloggers, Instagramers, or Youtubers using keywords or, if you prefer, contact agencies specializing in this type of profile. Many options are depending on the type of trade you want to make. Some companies pay the influencer directly and others prefer to make an invitation or a gift in exchange for a review, photos, video, or recommendation.
Some Instagrammers charge $ 15,000 to attend a 3-hour event and others who will talk about your product to get a giveaway or a discount. Paying more or less for a campaign with influencers depends on their “visibility”, that is, the number of followers, but it’s all about offering options and negotiating directly with them.
Important conclusions for your ads
It’s never too late to optimize and to be honest
As professionals and advertisers, we need to adapt to new trends and not be afraid to experiment with new ways of advertising. We must create segmented campaigns so as not to saturate users and we must strive to make advertisements that are not misleading and always try to ensure that creativity (videos, images, sequences, product sheets) is of the highest quality.
If you don’t take risks, you don’t win
We know it’s not easy to differentiate yourself and beat the competition, but if others can, why can’t you? It’s always worth stopping to think, innovate, and try something new, especially if what you’re doing now isn’t right for you.
Businesses require specialized professionals
The SEM and advertising evolve along with technology, mobile phones, social networks, and the way we use the Internet. Companies need to specialize their workers and professionals need to acquire new skills to optimize and create campaigns. If you want to continue learning, you might be interested in our Adwords courses in Madrid or even the Google Ads online distance learning course.
You can also learn at your own pace by following specialist blogs, videos, webinars, workshops, and events.