Advertisers react to ‘disappointing’ Google Marketing Live 2024

Advertisers haven’t been shy about sharing their thoughts on all of the Google Marketing Live 2024 announcements.

There were mixed feelings around the many AI updates (Boris Beceric used AI to count the number of AI mentions – 101). Performance Max updates were positive; The fact that B2B was overlooked upset others; and there were many more emotions in between.

Here is a summary of some of the responses to GML 2024 from nine experts:

AI and automation

Amalia Fowler, Founder, Good AF Consulting:

“I was confused by the statement that AI does not replace the marketer, followed later by AI that can execute marketing strategies. The “control” narrative felt like lip service, but a few updates do address advertisers’ concerns.

“We are in an age of automation and AI, and machine learning by definition requires volume to learn, which in the case of Google Ads requires budget. This tells me that advertisers with minimal budgets should wait before they can use Google Ads or spend more money on Google Ads, and that small businesses should carefully consider their marketing strategies from a holistic perspective.

“Many of the products mentioned require data from elsewhere – retrieving text samples or using feed ads. Garbage in, garbage out.

“Updates felt like slightly more advanced versions of last year’s GML.”

Jeremy Krantz, director of paid search, Compound Growth Marketing:

“The live Ai prototype felt like a knee-jerk reaction to ChatGPT 4o and everything else related to ai and pmax was highly expected.

“Overall, GML 2024 felt very disappointing, especially when looking at it from a B2B lens. No surprises or anything unexpected were announced.

“Hopefully B2B will come into the picture one day, because from now on we will be completely ignored again.”

Sarah Stemen, Founder, Sarah Stemen LLC:

“The production of AI assets in Pmax can be incredibly powerful for rapid testing. I believe the real power of this feature will be the combination of AI assets + asset-level reporting

Advertisements in AI overviews were inevitable because overviews take up a lot of space and offer countless commercial opportunities.

The delivery was unclear. It seems like Google doesn’t know how to do this yet.

Isn’t this essentially what happens when you convert images into videos when Google creates a video in Pmax?

It seemed to me like a variation on an existing process, but maybe that’s just my perspective. I’d love to hear your thoughts on whether this is really new or a different twist.

Navah Hopkins, Brand Evangelist, Optmyzr:

“There are several updates that apply to B2B/Lead Gen: image-to-video ads, brand controls, Demand Gen lookalikes that only require 100 users, profit bids, and ads shown in AI feeds.”

Niki Grant, Director of Partner Support, ClickTech Solution:

“I’m sure we all knew GML would be packed with AI updates, and features like brand guidelines are a step in the right direction for advertisers riding the AI ​​wave and still want to maintain some control over their presence.

“New visual formats will be interesting as Google continues to diversify away from the world of text ads, particularly brand profiles, which provide a new way to summarize your brand to customers; it’s nice to see something that looks really different than a variation on what we’re used to

“The profit optimization objectives in Performance Max sound particularly important because advertisers aim to optimize based on real business results rather than ‘media metrics’; I would like to know how much data these goals need to function, and whether smaller advertisers will be sidelined as a result.”

Lars Maat (founder Maatwerk Online):

“This [Meridian] can be ‘something’. In my opinion, Meridian is not suitable for all advertisers. MMM is something very ‘difficult’ and complex and I don’t think the majority of advertisers are ready for this. Agencies, okay. Big advertisers, okay. But the small businesses? Not so

About matching advertisements with the content in the AI ​​overview – ‘something that was already known?’ This came for us at the same time that SGE was launched. ”

Julie Friedman Bacchini (founder of Neptune Moon):

This conversational AI grates. Only me?

Advertisers don’t need to “democratize content creation.” We need advertising solutions that allow us to reach people who want to buy what we sell.

So Generation AI still makes mistakes, so don’t be upset if this happens in your account…

Google’s Gemini AI can’t generate people or product images, so keep that all in mind. The examples do not reflect this.

So if human input is essential, how can generative AI predict performance before anything is running?

Performance Max (PMax)

Fowler:

The 100 user lookalike list is the most important for me here, followed by brand checks related to PMax placements.

Scott Carruthers (Head of PPC at Journey Verder):

More insights for Performance Max – asset level reporting etc. (Isn’t this what we’ve all been waiting for?!)

Linking YouTube creator accounts to Ads accounts – being able to promote UGC is huge, and Google falls short in this area compared to other platforms. YT ads will definitely gain more traction due to better links/creator support.

Bacchini:

Item-level reporting and YouTube exclusions are a welcome addition to PMax.

A 10% improvement for broad match? That bar was low (check your demand reports everyone).

Jyll Saskin-Gales (Google Ads coach at Learn with Jyll):

While Search + PMax’s “Power Pair” proclamation is a good sales pitch, PMax is very clearly the way forward in this multimodal environment.

B2B and lead generation

Krantz:

Overall, GML 2024 felt very disappointing, especially when looking at it from a B2B lens. No surprises or anything unexpected were announced.

Hopefully B2B will come into the picture one day, because from now on we will be completely ignored again

Storm:

Numerous store and trade announcements. As Harrison Jack Hepp hilariously posted: No bot for lead generation objectives and/or B2B advertisers

To vote:

Virtual try-on, 3D product images are interesting because, although we already have similar solutions, any improvement to the shopping experience is, in my opinion, a net positive.

Interested in virtual trying on and 3D product images that enhance the shopping experience.

If Google creates a video in Pmax, isn’t this essentially what happens when you want to convert images into videos?

It seemed to me like a variation on an existing process, but maybe that’s just my perspective. I’d love to hear your thoughts on whether this is actually new or a different twist.

Storm:

How do you compete against TikTok Shop, Amazon, Pinterest and more? Google Lens Search and circle to search.

Scholarship:

While developments in Shopping formats sound innovative, it remains to be seen how many advertisers outside of major brands will find AI-driven Shopping formats a help in reducing production costs, or a hindrance with nuances and implications yet to be discovered. In the meantime, I’m looking forward to seeing how different brands decide to use ‘stickers’ on their YouTube Shorts!

Bacchini:

Shopping ads are going to include review text in your ads???? Is there any control over this?

Some things from last year also act like they’re new? Especially the images and video material.

Overall, the comments reflect a mix of cautious optimism about specific updates and significant skepticism about the broader relevance and innovation of GML 2024, especially for B2B and smaller advertisers.

Why we care. Advertisers are happy with some of the new updates, but they are growing tired of the frequent AI-driven changes. Smaller brands in particular are looking for better updates and a clearer understanding of how these changes will impact their performance. This need has not yet been met.

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