With Christmas less than two weeks away, the world has literally gone mad. You probably don’t want to step foot inside a mall right about now, unless of course you’re one of those people who plans ridiculously far ahead and have all your shopping done. In that case, heading to the mall to laugh at all the crazed, credit-cards-maxed-out folks scurrying to score the hottest toys and gifts of the season can be a highly entertaining way to spend an afternoon.

While all that’s going down, the paid advertising world, and the marketing world in general, is abuzz with insights on how 2014 will go down in history. The verdict? Well, according to Google, 2014 will be remembered as the year retailers first truly embraced the omni-channel concept with massive-yet-unified campaigns creating a consistent experience across the multitude of digital channels that now fill our daily lives.

So, how’s 2014 going down in the history books for you? The year you totally rocked PPC and made massive profits from the holiday shopping madness? The year you finally took the leap and embraced paid advertising as a marketing strategy? There’s still time to make 2014 your most epic yet, and much of this week’s news will help you do just that.

 

Let’s see what’s going on in the world of Google…

Yesterday, Google announced the availability of a new Video Analytics page in AdWords for Video. Previously, advertisers had to find out how their videos were actually performing beyond when they appeared as ads in YouTube Analytics, a separate dashboard from the AdWords for Video dashboard where advertisers select targeting options and set budgets. But now, you can analyze video performance right within the AdWords Video interface. Get all the details here.

If you have a mobile app (or are thinking of developing one), you’ll be happy to know about new features to help drive downloads and re-engagement, the hallmarks of app success. The latest in Google’s Best Practices series will help you take your app to the next level of epic (because, you know, it’ already epic).

Tapping into Mobile App Installs and an accompanying checklist will show you how to:

  • Estimate the value of an app user
  • Attract clients with ads and App Store pages
  • Track and optimize app downloads acquired through display, search, and video

Tapping into Mobile App Engagement and its own one-page checklist offers insights on:

  • Tracking user behavior following app downloads
  • Creating compelling ads to re-engage users
  • Using deep-linking to lead users to the most important parts of your app
  • Driving app engagement by re-connecting with users through display and search

More details in this post.

There’s a new AdWords Editor in town, this one turned up to a sweet 11.0. This isn’t just any update; it’s the biggest update since the initial release of AdWords Editor all the way back in 2006. And yeah, that was like, a really long time ago now. Man, I’m getting old…

Anyway, here’s a look at some of the cool stuff you can do with AdWords Editor 11.0:

  • Manage accounts and items side-by-side
  • Find what you’re looking for faster
  • Perform more actions in bulk and at scale

More info on these new capabilities, and how to upgrade to the grand 11.0 release, right here.

Did you miss the Inside AdWords Livestream on Wednesday? You can still check it out if you want to “click through AdWords in 2014.”

Another juicy tidbit emerging from the Google-verse this week, Lightbox is now available across screens. More on that here.

And finally, the Inside AdWords Blog has an interesting look at the unified marketing efforts of Macy’s, Sephora, and REI, reflecting on 2014 as possibly being remembered as the “first truly omni-channel holiday season: the year retailers really stretched the sales funnel to include mobile, store visits and online buying under one big connected holiday umbrella.” Check it out.

 

And on to the ever-expanding Land of Bing…

Bing offers a look at the “Tools Trifecta: Bing Ads Editor, Bing Ads Intelligence and the Ad Preview Tool,” with an analysis of the capabilities of each tool and how they’re used together to create cohesive, powerful advertising campaigns that drive clicks, conversions, and business to your doors. Read it here.

Hey, so you know what also happens right around the holiday season and following the New Year? Football championship season. In fact, the Super Bowl is the second-highest food consumption day in the U.S., next to Thanksgiving. Yeah, so people consume an average of 1,200 calories and 50 grams of fat on Super Bowl Sunday…just in snacks. If you’re in the food industry, or anything with any sort of relevance to football, partying, or eating, the football championship season can be quite profitable.

As such, Bing weighs in with some timely tips and insights to help you capitalize on the food-eating, beer-drinking frenzy that’s in store. Get ‘em here.

 

What’s up in the suburbs of the World Wide Web?

Do you know what motivates your PPC audience? Is it deals, value, status? PPCHero takes a look at motivating factors and how to understand what drives your audience to take desired actions in this post.

3QDigital is calling AdWords Custom Columns a “holiday miracle.” Find out why here.

Are you wasting ad spend? How many of your ads are going nowhere fast? PPCHero offers insights into remedying wasted ad spend.

Certified Knowledge is running a series with tutorials on how to audit your PPC campaigns. In Part 11, Wijnand Meijer looks at the Lin-Rodnitzky Ratio.

Clix Marketing is holiday-ing it up with a series of holidays-focused posts. This week, you can learn about the best toys in the PPC world in this post.

Do you know how to measure total paid search value? Learn how to find out how much value your PPC campaigns are really providing in this video from RKG.

Are you a solopreneur or micro-business? Don’t discount PPC as a viable tactic for building your brand and generating new business. WordStream offers up six tips for making PPC work for entrepreneurs and very small businesses. Check it out.

Do your conversion rates suck? Don’t fret, Oli Gardner from Unbounce weighs in with a Grumpy Cat meme and six expert tactics to remedy your sucky conversion rate situation. And if you’ve never read anything from Oli Gardner before, you’re in for a treat; he’s quite an entertainer. Read it here.

 

Now that I’ve loaded up your PPC plate with plenty of ideas and information to end 2014 on an epic note and kickoff 2015 like a PPC rockstar, I’ll leave you to digest all the amazing ways you can use paid advertising to get better results for your business and make some more cash to pay off all those holiday shopping bills. Enjoy your weekend, folks!