How NOT to Run Your Google Ads

We are coming to you today with a very important message –keep your ads up to date!

Even the most innocent and well-intentioned advertisements can go terribly wrong depending on what’s going on in the world. For example, take a look at this ad for facemasks:

How NOT to Run Your Google Ads face mask coronavirus

While this may have been a perfectly acceptable advertisement all the way until late 2019; in the wake of the recent Coronavirus epidemic, any mention of the city of origin evokes an immediate recoil from buyers. Of course, there’s an added level of irony here, as demand for these masks on Google search has increased due to global fears about Coronavirus.

It’s all about context, so we recommend you do your best to keep on top of what news is circulating. Then again, if you are selling medical-grade facemasks and operate your business within the epicentre of an epidemic, it should be pretty obvious why your credibility would come into question.

Anyone who’s going out of their way to order facemasks online probably knows about Coronavirus and the city it originated from; Wuhan, China. This ad showcases a deep disconnect between the product’s utility, the circumstantial/seasonal nature of spikes in demand, and understanding of the target audience.

With this example fresh in mind, let’s take a look at some of the things you need to AVOID when running your Google ads.

Failing to direct product ads to dedicated landing pages

If you are only selling one product, or if you are a specific service (like a plumber or electrician), then it’s unlikely you will make this mistake since you only have one general thing to sell. However, if you sell multiple products and have an ad for one of them, then people who click that ad need to be directed to a landing page for that specific product.

For example, if you sell barbeques and put an ad up for a specific type of gas barbeque – and the ad took people to your homepage – they would then have to try and navigate back to that particular product. Needless to say, this creates an awkward pause in the buying journey for your customers that will turn many people off – when you make buying your product needlessly difficult, consumers are eager to punish you for wasting their time.

Be regionally minded

While we live in a globalised economy, we don’t live in a global culture (at least not yet), and that means that values will differ from region to region. A prime example of this is where some countries may have more relaxed attitudes towards skin exposure than others – a women’s swimsuit brand that may be popular and accepted in one country may be reviled in another.

Don’t make the mistake of assuming the internet is divorced from the real world. The internet may not have a specific culture, but the people who use it do.

Not leveraging the power of re-targeted ads

Re-targeted ads are an incredibly powerful tool enabled by internet technology that more and more businesses are starting to leverage. Basically, it uses data about someone’s shopping behaviour on your website to serve them ads specific to them in the future.

The clearest example of this is when someone adds a product to their shopping cart on a website, but then abandons it at the point of sale when things like shipping costs and delivery time begin to influence the buying decision. A re-targeted ad will show that person an image of the product they almost bought, instantly reminding them of the temptation they had, and prompting them to finish that last step.

A great example of a company using re-targeted ads is Displate, a supplier of metal posters with various niche pop-culture designs focusing on video games/anime etc. Their retargeted ads will remember which poster designs the user added to their cart, and then show them in banner ads that are served to the user during their other web browsing.

For example, if someone really loves Back to The Future, and they almost purchased a poster of the DeLorean, then their retargeted ads will be personalised for them by showing a preview of the specific DeLorean poster they were considering. As you probably guessed, this makes the advertisement 100% more eye-catching to the target audience, as well as invoking their feelings of nostalgia/fanfare.

Don’t worry if you’re feeling a little stumped right now, our free digital marketing guide should lead you in the right direction.