It’s been a quiet week in Google-land. We suspect the Google bots are still recovering from a long weekend full of parties and picnics – you know, hungover from all those hot dogs and hamburgers. It’s the last weekend of summer, we can’t blame them. Gotta get the burgers while you can.

But, alas, the PPC news must go on, and go on it does. With all kinds of stuff you may or may not want to hear. I know, I know, but bearing the news of the land of PPC is my duty, and fulfill it I must. That means I bring news of close-match variants and ramping up for seasonal advertising campaigns, a.k.a. the holidays.

Hate me if you must, but upon the New Year, my loyal PPC readers, you will be singing my praises as my relentless pursuit of persuading you to begin planning your seasonal campaigns in a timely fashion will reward you handsomely, with a nice, plump bottom line. Hate me today, love me tomorrow.

And in other interesting news, it seems as though Bing has itself in a bit of a pickle with Getty Images over copyright infringement. Curious? Read on.

 

Let’s see what’s up with Google this week…

What matters most to your customers? As a marketer, that question should always be at the top of your mind anyway. But now, you can put that critical information in the forefront of your audience’s mind, too, thanks to Google’s new callout extensions.

What are they, exactly? According to Google, callout extensions are “additional text that shows with your Google search ads, highlighting specific information about your products and services.” That means things like free shipping, 24-hour customer service, and price-matching offers can appear along with your ad copy, placing those conversion-boosting details right in front of your target prospects before they even click.

Callouts can be used in conjunction with different ad formats. Google poses these scenarios:

  • If you’re using sitelinks to point to women’s clothing or back-to-school, callouts can be used to let visitors know you’re offering 20% off site-wide. This encourages clicks and ultimately, conversions.
  • If you’re using call extensions, adding a callout that promotes 24/7 customer support is a logical compliment. This lets visitors know they can call you anytime, day or night.

Callouts can be added at the account, campaign, or ad group levels. That means you can offer more general information on products or services at your overall account level or campaign levels, with more detailed information at the ad group level. Read more about this new feature at the AdWords Blog.

 

Let’s pay Bing a friendly visit…

Yep, it’s that time: time for me to start endlessly harping on the fact that you need to get your holiday ad campaigns planned – like, now.

It’s not just me; Bing’s totally on board with my relentless pursuit of holiday advertising. In fact, they’re hosting a free webinar to help you plan your seasonal Bing Ads strategy. It’s next Tuesday, September 9th, so get your name on the roster now. Learn more and sign up here.

You knew it was inevitable. Bing Ads now include close variants in broad match modifier. This change aims to help advertisers capture those keywords that have the user intent you’re after, including misspellings, abbreviations, or shoddy grammar. Because, you know, not everyone is as skilled with a comma as I. Just kidding. I totally misuse commas, and sometimes I do it on purpose.

Specifically, your ads in Bing will now also show for keyword searches that match the user intent of your target keywords, including:

  • Plurals
  • Abbreviations
  • Acronyms
  • Spacing
  • Misspellings
  • Accents
  • Punctuation
  • Equivalent expressions

“In testing, we have seen some promising results, with click-through rates increasing on average 3%* for ads using broad match modifier with close variants applied, at no impact to average cost-per-click,” says Bing. It’s rolling out only in the U.S. market for now, and will ramp in early September. Get the full details on the Bing Ads Blog.

 

Taking a stroll around the web…

 

So, it seems Bing is in a bit of a pickle. With Getty Images, which is suing Bing for “massive copyright infringement” for its Image Widget, which allows publishers to display photos “pulled in by the Bing search engine,” according to Search Engine Land. The lawsuit claims Bing has turned the entire web into a massive collection of clipart. Get the scoop here.

What does the Impression Share metric really mean? Well, it’s believed to be a key metric telling of a brand’s market share, but a recent case study proves this to be misleading, according to PPC Hero. Find out what the real deal is with Impression Share here.

If you’re into social advertising, you really need to get in on the YouTube action. Search Engine Journal reports that YouTube converts more customers than any other social network. Check it out.

There’s a hot roundtable discussion happening on Tuesday, September 9th, with Brad Geddes, Founder of CertifiedKnowledge.org, Mike from SpyFu and Jaclyn from Wordstream on all things keywords. On the table for discussion, of course, is the death of exact match keywords, among other topics for the keyword-obsessed. Hey, that’s me – and you. Details from the man himself, Brad Geddes, at Certified Knowledge here.

And finally, over at RimmKaufman.com, James Page is weighing in on the hidden dangers of AdWords international broad matching. It’s scary stuff, which is rather apropros given that Halloween is around the corner, eh? More on the hidden horrors of international broad match right here.

And with that, my friends, I say that my work here for the week is done. Tune in next week to find out if Bing lives on from within its pickle.