Hey, my faithful PPC-ers — did ya miss me? Been a few weeks due to some circumstances outside my control, but I’m back in action (and better than ever).

We have a couple weeks of highlights to cover on what’s been happening in the PPC world, so let’s dive right in.

Checking in with Google…

Google has introduced 360-degree video ads. What’s that mean? It means that you can engage your audience in an entirely new way. “Viewers can explore every angle of your videos by dragging their mouse or moving their phone to shift their POV 360 degrees – up, down, left or right. Thanks to the ability simply to move your phone to see different parts of the video, 360 video ads are a truly mobile-first video ad product.” Learn more from this post.

Manufacturers can now enhance the accuracy of the product information they share with shoppers thanks to Google’s new Manufacturer Center. Find out what you can do with this new tool here.

The Trustworthy Accountability Group (TAG) announced a new pilot blacklist to protect advertisers across the industry, comprised of data-center IP addresses associated with non-human ad requests. Clearly, this is a great thing for advertisers who don’t want to pay for any non-human ad impressions. More on this here.

Those micro-moments we’ve been talking so much about are transforming the online and real-world shopping experience. Google takes a look at some useful stats and how advertisers can change the game by capitalizing on micro-moments in this post.

Want richer insights? Duh, of course you do. Well, good news: Deeper, more valuable insights are within reach when you measure your display ads across apps and the web. Using Estimated Total Conversions, you can now measure conversions that started on the web and finished in an app, or vice-versa. More details in this post.

On June 30th, the Agency Blog announced the launch of three new mobile video formats for DoubleClick and a new Creative Preview App to make it easier to deliver such compelling, cross-screen experiences.

Here’s a look at what’s new:

  • The Video Cue Points component, now available for download, allows developers to build an interactive video ad that looks and feels like VPAID, except that the video runs directly within the display ad on mobile devices.
  • The “Teaser Reels” mobile video component in DoubleClick Studio allows you to easily create an HTML5 display ad with an autoplay video teaser.
  • New mobile in-app templates in Google Web Designer. These starter templates for mobile make it easy to create rich in-app experiences, such as this expandable HTML5 video unit, which was built by Think Jam to promote the release of Warner Brother’s Hobbit film. Learn more about Google Web Designer templates here.
  • The new Creative Preview App, now available for Google Play and coming soon to iOS, which allows you to push mobile ads from DoubleClick Studio directly to your mobile device. That means you can preview and test mobile ads in an actual mobile environment.

Hit up this post on the Agency Blog for more details.

At the DoubleClick Leadership Summit, thought leaders discussed the discussed the implications for brands, broadcasters, and publishers of the shift from Primetime to All-the-time. The presentation included four ways brands can break through the noise and cut through the cross-screen complexity to deliver more effective video advertising, including:

  • Being on the best screen for the “moment”
  • Connecting and engaging with every interaction
  • Buying smarter across all screens
  • Focusing on your impact, not views

This article, featured at the new-and-improved DoubleClick.com, delves deeper into how to make video advertising work in today’s complex media landscape.

Now that it’s summer, Google and Your Business is offering up some insights on how seasonal change affects small businesses, such as:

  • 25% of small businesses change their operating hours during the summer.
  • But that doesn’t mean they’re cutting back. In fact, most are extending their hours and staying open longer than they do during other seasons.
  • Yet, since the unofficial start of summer (Memorial Day), just 1% of businesses have adjusted their hours on Google My Business.
  • Businesses in Ohio, Delaware, and Wisconsin have been the most proactive about updating their operating hours on Google My Business.

What does this mean? Well, how do you expect customers to take advantage of your extended summer hours if they don’t know when you’re open? In other words, hop on over to Google My Business and make sure your hours of operation are up-to-date. More details and insights in this post.

 

Hangin’ with Bing…

Bing is expanding the reach of the Bing Ads platform with Bing Native Ads, in beta, which will enable advertisers to target user intent even outside search. Wow, pretty impressive stuff, huh? Here’s how it all goes down:

Basically, Bing Native Ads will combine native experiences with relevant, natural strong intent signals, including:

  • users’ interests expressed by their prior search queries
  • intent signals from the content of the experience in which the users are at any given point
  • user actions like looking for products or taking actions on advertiser sites

In addition to matching intent signals such as those listed above, “Bing Native Ads offer the same advanced targeting or bid boosting capabilities available from Bing Ads including location, device type, time of day, day of week, and site remarketing.” In other words, you want in on this, ASAP. Learn more in this post.

One of many areas in which Bing excels is offering valuable tips and information to help advertisers succeed on the Bing Ads platform. In a video series, Bing is offering universal tips that will help you gear up for a successful advertising experience no matter your vertical or market. Check out this video on getting results with Bing Ads.

In case you missed it, Bing Shopping Campaigns are now officially rolled out and available to all U.S. advertisers. Get the scoop here.

Hackers. They’re everywhere, and they’ve been phishing around for Bing Ads login credentials using Google Search. Find out how to keep your credentials secure in this post.

Demographic targeting is better than ever in Bing Ads. Read this post for more on the improvements to your targeting options.

Some changes are coming to Content Ads in August. Bing Ads Content Ads give search advertisers a way to extend their reach to potential customers who are browsing websites or in apps. And, the Content Ads themselves are text ads that are displayed next to content on Microsoft and Yahoo websites, across the Bing network of partner sites and in apps for Windows and Windows Phone.

What’s changing?

  • Bing Ads will no longer serve Content Ads on Microsoft, Yahoo and our network of partner websites beginning August 1st.
  • Bing Ads will continue to serve Content Ads through Windows Media and in apps for Windows Phone and Windows.

Not to worry, though: Advertisers should see little to no change in their overall clicks and spend in their Bing Ads account with these changes. Content Ads represent a very small portion (just 2%) of the total network traffic available through Bing Ads. More details here.

Bing shares some performance and optimization tips for improving your Bing Shopping Campaigns in the last of a series of posts on Bing Shopping Campaigns. This particular post focuses on tracking and viewing performance statistics for Shopping Campaigns in Bing Ads, explaining three ways to track performance: Product Groups page, Reports, or Dimensions tab.

You’ll also learn about the Product Partition Report and the Product Dimension Report, which will be used instead of the Product ads reports to view data about your Bing Shopping Campaigns. Finally, you’ll learn how to use the Dimension tab for Shopping views, along with some key points to remember and valuable tips for optimizing your campaigns. Check it out here.

Beginning January 1, 2016, Bing will be the exclusive provider of search and search advertising services across AOL properties for even greater consumer and marketer reach. Bing currently holds 20% of the market share in the U.S., and this 10-year partnership with AOL is the latest in a string of moves to solidify Bing’s position as a key player in the search industry. More details in this post.

 

On to the thought leadership camp…

Did you ever think about how your PPC accounts are kind of like toddlers? Truly, the similarities are uncanny. PPCHero shares the toddler-esque qualities of your PPC accounts in this post.

Oh, hey, you losing your mind? Most of us PPC-ers feel like we need a straightjacket now and then. Fortunately, PPCHero is saving the day once again with these 8 email alerts for your PPC accounts that will save your sanity.

PPCHero takes a look at the shifting landscape – to, of course, a world filled with micro-moments – and how to rethink your PPC strategy to accommodate the always-on, in-the-moment mobile world. Read it here.

Are your ads not working? PPCHero is doing a PPC facepalm and sharing seven reasons why your ads might not be working (and how to fix them). Check it out.

Are your PPC accounts making you hungry? According to this post from 3Q Digital, optimizing PPC accounts is a hunger-inducing activity. Read to find out why.

You should also check out this simple, step-by-step tutorial on setting up YouTube ads in AdWords for Video, also from 3Q.

It’s a frequently asked question: Should you bid on your own brand? The answer, according to 3Q Digital, is not always. They explain why in this post.

And in this post from 3Q Digital, you’ll find out how to discover your target audience with Google Analytics.

Are you proactively layering your PPC targeting? You should be. Clix Marketing reveals why in this post.

Few things in life do I love more than a great roundup, so naturally, I’m recommending that you check out this roundup from Clix Marketing, which reveals seven killer resources for learning PPC.

Has mobile impacted paid search? This video from Merkle |RKG takes a look.

Oh, and what about that crazy epic Amazon Prime Day? What the heck was that? If the resounding opinion on the interwebs was any indication, Amazon Prime Day was epic alright — an epic fail. Merkle | RKG looks at the impact of Amazon Prime Day, specifically, that it drove Amazon Product Ads conversions down, while boosting Google impressions. Have a look.

Keyword analysis can be a PPC advertiser’s weakest link, but WordStream has 3 keys to better keyword analysis to up your game.

Is there a downside to Bing Native Ads? There just might be — a loss of advertiser control. Find out what WordStream has to say here.

You should also take a look at these five psychological hacks to exploit in your PPC ad copy for stellar results.

WordStream talks about landing page relevance and whether it’s possible to optimize for Quality Score, in this post.

And last but not least, a little fun: Hashtags are incredibly powerful on Twitter. In this post, WordStream takes a look at the amazing power of Twitter hashtags and how you can use them to your advantage.

 

Whew. Feeling caught up now? I know I am. On to the weekend…make it fabulous, and get out from in front of that laptop and get some sun, k? We all need a little Vitamin D in our lives now and then.