Are You Using Responsive Display Ads in Your Digital Marketing Strategy?

by | Digital Advertising

Are You Using Responsive Display Ads In Your Digital Marketing Strategy?

One of the most challenging parts of advertising can be coming up with creative assets to use in your display. It can take a creative designer hours, even days, to design a wide variety of images, sizes, and styles to meet your advertising needs.

It can also be frustrating when you’re searching for new ways to market your business and don’t have an asset that fits the requirements. Google responded to this frustration by creating responsive display ads (RDA).

What Are Responsive Display Ads?

Wouldn’t it be great if an ad could change based on where it was displayed? That’s the thought that drove Google to create responsive display ads.

Instead of you needing to provide a variety of ad designs in a wide array of sizes, Google does the hard part for you and automatically adjusts the size, appearance, and format of each ad to fit the available ad spaces. You provide the basics:

  • Short headline
  • Long headline
  • Business name
  • Description
  • Logo
  • Images or video

Then Google uses that information to build the ad based on the desired display space. So your ad can display in large format on one site and then take up an entirely different area on another page. Your basic information remains the same.

What Google Needs

While Google does rely on artificial intelligence to build ads based on whatever requirements a particular ad space features, you do still need to supply enough creative assets to make the builds possible. Google needs at least:

  • 5 images
  • 5 headlines
  • 5 short descriptions
  • A long headline
  • Business name
  • High-resolution logo

You can supply more, but this is your starting point. With everything on file, Google can feed the appropriate information into the space to create any design needed. It can mix and match all design work to create the perfect ad for each page’s needs and demands.

Responsive Display Ads—The Future Is Here

Artificial intelligence is moving into all aspects of life, including the advertising space. Responsive display ads allow Google to serve the right ad to the right customer, ultimately creating a better experience for the end user.

Google uses its own internal metrics to discover what works and what performs. It adjusts and tweaks, looking for more ways to get better results. The best part is your ad always looks professional: no more skewed photos stretched or out of balance.

Of course, Google can only use what you provide. This is where you should focus on ensuring you have the best creatives possible at the start of each campaign.

Why Should You Use Responsive Display Ads?

As a marketer, your goal is conversions: how can you increase traffic and convert more of that traffic into sales? While Google will never make any guarantees, advertisers find that responsive display ads give them better results. This can happen for several reasons.

Better Reach

Because Google can create ads on the fly and place them anywhere they see congruity, you’ll have greater reach than if you place the ads yourself. More impressions generate potential conversions, introducing you to new audiences you may have never had the opportunity to meet before.

Experience

Google has long since aimed to give the end user better experiences. If it has an option of placing a pre-made “okay” ad or designing a “great” ad on the fly, Google will always lean toward a better experience. There is no official word that Google prioritizes RDA options of pre-made ads, but you can assume that it will prioritize providing good-looking ads.

AI

Machine learning gives the advantage of using responsive display ad assets. As it calculates what works best on different pages and sites, it will use a history of performance-based metrics to guide the way. The more creative control AI has in testing and supplying results, the more it will favor building and showcasing what’s working best.

Where Responsive Display Ads Might Not Always Work

After reading all about responsive display ads, you might be excited to jump on the bandwagon and give it a try. They sound easy: Google does the work for you so you can eliminate a lot of the steps that used to take time and money. 

Before you get too excited, it’s equally important to consider the negatives before you dig in.

Branding

While responsive display ads can help you reach larger audiences, it isn’t fussy about the final results. It can pull creatives in a way that isn’t always visually appealing. If you are protective of your image and how ads appear on both mobile and desktop displays, more control might be better for you. Anytime you give up control, it has the potential to be less than perfect.

Legal

Some industries have to disclose certain information in every visual representation they produce. Because responsive display ads use random information, these creatives would not be a good fit for any organization that must include specific words and phrases.

Ready to Give Responsive Display Ads a Try?

If you’re convinced RDAs would work well for your business, your next step is to give them a try. There’s no time like the present to experiment with this new technology.

However, we often recommend testing before moving in full force. If you already have display ads working for you, continue with them. Then add RDAs to the mix and test how well they work against your traditional display ad metrics. Testing is always your best course of action when making any changes to your marketing.

As you watch what happens with your responsive display ads, you can use your knowledge to make changes in both types of advertising. This is a great way to tweak words, phrases, and images, finding out what works well and attracts more attention.

Adding a responsive display ad campaign alongside existing display ad campaigns is a great way to reach out to new audiences and test ideas to increase performance.

Have you tried responsive display ads yet?

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