Posts Tagged ‘Marin Software’

3 Key Takeaways from Google’s Planned AdWords Changes

By April 22nd, 2014

This morning, Google announced several new AdWords updates which will become available in the coming months. Vice President of Product Management Jerry Dischler made the reveal during the AdWords Performance Forum, where he reiterated Google’s mission to help advertisers “turn signals into stories,” and emphasized that “it’s no longer about the device; it’s about the consumer.”

Let’s take a look at their feature announcements in more detail:

1) Mobile App PromotionGoogle will focus on improving the ways in which advertisers drive mobile app installs, engagement, and conversions through AdWords.

AdWords mobile app promotionsChanges will include suggested keywords based on popular searches in Google Play, improved targeting options on the GDN, and deep linking in mobile app ads for users who have already downloaded an advertiser’s app.

Renewed emphasis on the mobile app space should come as no surprise. From a mobile usage perspective, the statistics are too glaring to ignore. While there have been more than 50 billion app downloads in Google Play across 190 countries, many advertisers still struggle to promote their apps and drive engagement post-download. In fact, some 60% of the available mobile apps on Google Play are never installed and over 80% of apps only get used once. According to eMarketer, more than 86% of mobile usage occurs via apps while only 14% occurs on the mobile web.

While Google was the first major advertising publisher to offer a mobile app install advertising solution (mobile app ad extensions), they’ve recently taken a backseat to Facebook. Approximately 18% of mobile app downloads now come from Facebook and Twitter, and many believe that social beats out search when it comes to app discovery and download. With these new mobile app promotion features, Google hopes to change that perception.

2) Intelligent Measurement Tools Google will focus on more intelligent measurement tools to help advertisers make the online-offline connection.

Last year, Google released Estimated Total Conversions. Marketed as a way to illustrate how Google search campaigns affect offline conversions, it also provides an estimated impact of advertising spend in one central location (AdWords). Today, Dischler announced additional tracking for offline conversions as part of this calculation. While his description of “offline conversions” was not specific, it will likely include in-store purchases.

This renewed focus on offline conversion tracking fits with Google’s aim to be a one-stop-shop for online advertising. However, advertiser concerns about sharing first-party data necessary for improved tracking still remain. Most advertisers prefer to keep most (if not all) of their first-party data out of Google’s reach due to privacy concerns. It will be interesting to see the adoption rate of this updated Estimated Total Conversions feature given the reluctance of advertisers to share offline data with Google.

3) Intelligent Tools for Power Users Google will focus on helping AdWords power users manage campaign complexities by adding a few sophisticated tools.

google adwords changes

Dischler recognized some current frustrations advertisers experience with AdWords, including the difficulty of completing large-scale bulk actions across campaigns. He called them “far too complicated” and acknowledged that many users currently go outside the interface and create complex spreadsheets to get the insight they need.

To address this pain point, Google will add functionality to help advertisers more easily upload, create and edit “hundreds” of Google advertising campaigns. In addition, AdWords users can expect new reporting, visualization and testing features in the AdWords interface. For example, advertisers will soon be able to drag and drop metrics into the UI to create pivot tables and easily manipulate reports “across multiple dimensions,” similar to what many do today within Excel. Through these “Intelligent Tools,” Google hopes to provide a way to handle reporting, analytics and optimization “all within AdWords.”

This is an exciting step for Google, but it’s important to note the data is Google-specific only, so advertisers will still need to go “offline” or to a third-party platform for comprehensive, cross-channel reporting. Furthermore, Google has historically struggled when it comes to reporting on actual revenue from purchase transactions. At best, Google will provide advertisers with revenue proxies and estimates which can be used for analytics and optimization.

A Note to Our Customers

At Marin, we see these newly announced Google features as a step in the right direction to help address gaps in the AdWords interface. The new features will initially be released in closed-beta, but we look forward to working closely with Google to integrate themas they become available in the AdWords API.

As the leading digital marketing platform and largest spender through the Google API, our mission to provide the industry’s best cross-channel marketing capabilities for advertisers remains the same. As always, we value your product feedback and look forward to receiving your comments.

#MarinMasters NY 2014 Streamcap

By April 15th, 2014

Last week, we were proud to host another engaging Marin Masters in NYC! Customers and partners gathered to network, share insights, and take in presentations from some of today’s top digital marketers. A big thanks to everyone who attended, and here’s a transcribed streamcap in case you missed it (#MarinMasters on Twitter):

The Marin Vision: Turning Complexity into Opportunity 
Matt Ackley, CMO, Marin Software

Customer Targeting and Optimization in Action
Cameron Urry, Senior Interactive Marketing Manager at Extra Space Storage

Audience Targeting and Building a Database of Intent
Molly Parr, Director of Product Marketing at BlueKai

Deconstructing Digital Daily Habits: A Deeper Understanding of How Gen Y/Z Affects Online Advertising
Edwin Wong, Senior Director of B2B Strategic Research & Insights at Yahoo!

Attribution & Optimization Techniques for Multi-Channel Success 
Panelists: Matej Horava – Head of Partnerships at LiveRamp, Paul Pellman – CEO of Adometry, David Greenbaum – CEO of Boost Media

Mobile Audience Targeting
Cathy Boyle, Senior Analyst of Mobile at eMarketer, Inc.

Combining Search & Social: The Performance Marketing Multiplier
Dan Morris – Senior Product Marketing Manager, Marin Software

The Digital Transformation of an Industry Vertical
Brian Long, Senior Manager of Performance Marketing at AutoTrader and Ian MacDonald, Senior Manager and Director of Consumer Marketing at AutoTrader

Fireside Chat
Chris Lien, CEO of Marin Software and Melissa Esmundo, VP of Marketing at Though Mudder

  • Got the faux fire going for our fireside chat with Marin CEO and Tough Mudder’s Melissa Esmundo #marinmasters pic.twitter.com/w7Xfm7cADE
  • Internationally, Tough Mudder uses a lot of Display advertising since social and search channels more fragmented #marinmasters
  • Interesting marketing tactics from @ToughMudder to drive obstacle course event sign ups. #MarinMasters #measure - Paul Pellman (@ppellman)
  • @mesmundo Story telling & content narrative campaigns start in fall in “off season.” Move into direct with start of season #marinmasters
  • @mesmundo Better mobile experience and better mobile optimization drove 40% increase in engagement on mobile #marinmasters
  • @mesmundo Build awareness over social leveraging iconic images. Constant changing landscape of mobile a challenge #marinmasters
  • @mesmundo Conversion process starts early with educating consumers what a Tough Mudder event is. Starts with Social. #marinmasters
  • #marinmasters – brought to you by Melissa Esmundo Senior VP Marketing, Tough Mudder – “the mo moment” understanding the mobile experience- Ken Solano (@kensolo_2345)

Miscellaneous Fun

Meet Dana: Marin Team Member & Inspiring Advocate

By April 14th, 2014

Marin Software is fortunate to have over 500 employees around the globe, and today we’re excited to tell you about Dana Carpenter! A member of our research team in Austin, Dana is also an advocate for people with disabilities and recently participated in her second Ms. Wheelchair Texas. This unique competition is dedicated to promoting the achievements and needs of people with disabilities, and it does so with glamour and glitz!

Ms Wheelchair Texas 2014 participants

This year’s gala and competition was held on March 29th in Houston.

Contestants in Ms. Wheelchair Texas utilize wheelchairs for 100% of their daily mobility needs, and compete to become a spokeswoman for millions of Americans with disabilities. During the course of the competition, each participant delivers a speech on a disability issue they feel strongly about and plan to support. This year, Dana’s platform was all about bringing awareness to companies on how flexible employment solutions – such as working from home – can increase employment opportunities for people with disabilities who are otherwise qualified for the position.

“Transportation is a huge barrier to employment for people with disabilities,” Dana said. “As of February of this year, only 19% of people with disabilities were employed compared to about 80% of their able bodied counterparts. All it takes is creativity and flexibility to make a difference!”

In her role at Marin, Dana is able to work from home, eliminating worries about how to get to and from the office. Her manager Paul Greer noted, “Dana’s efforts and warm positive demeanor strongly contribute to our overall goal to provide best in class sales development support.  She is an asset and ally and we’re very glad she chose Marin.”

Dana Carpenter Ms. Wheelchair Texas

Dana was escorted on stage in style.

Bobby Hollis, Senior Manager of Sales Development and close friend of Dana’s, echoed that sentiment saying, “Dana is not only a solid contribution to our team and culture, she backs it up with solid quality work that is making great impact to our sales process. Selfishly we want her in the office more because she’s just a ball to be around but quite honestly we are extremely fortunate to have her with us in any capacity.”

Dana loves competing in Ms. Wheelchair Texas, saying she appreciates being around other women in similar situations. “You really do form a sisterhood so to speak,” she explained. “Also, it is so empowering to be on that stage sharing all the ways we are changing the lives of people with disabilities! You feel like you can take on the world, and win!”

2014 Ms Wheelchair Texas participants

Dana (back, third from left) hangs out with the Ms. Wheelchair participants.

Marin is proud to support Dana in her advocacy, and to hire the best employees regardless of physical disability or mobility issues. If you want to learn more about Ms. Wheelchair Texas, please visit their website or watch Dana’s speech on YouTube.

“Marin has given me the opportunity to work from home, while still making me feel like I’m part of a team,” Dana said. “How cool is that?!”

 

Business as Usual After Google Announcement

By April 9th, 2014

Over the past couple days, you likely heard some alarming reports speculating on changes in how Google passes data to analytics software and advertisers. This understandably created lots of buzz, but today we have the facts as reported in Google’s official Ads Developer Blog:

“Today, we are extending our efforts to keep search secure by removing the query from the referrer on ad clicks originating from SSL searches on Google.com.

Advertisers will continue to have access to useful data to optimize and improve their campaigns and landing pages.  For example, you can access detailed information in the AdWords search terms report and the Google Webmaster Tools Search Queries report.”

Marin Software will continue to receive keyword data from Google. Conversion and revenue tracking, reporting,  and analytics will not be disrupted. Our CMO Matt Ackley explained, “As an AdWords API partner, Marin Software leverages keyword data – separate from search query data – in providing its market-leading analytics, campaign management and optimization capabilities.”

For customers leveraging Marin Tracker, Tracker will no longer be used as a source for keyword expansion. However, Marin’s Keyword Expansion tool will continue to bring in keyword suggestions via the publisher search query reports for both Google and Bing, which provide the majority of keyword suggestions today. If you’re using Tracker and have questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to your customer success team.

We look forward to business as usual, helping our customers to be the best marketers in the industry.

Fifth UK & European Search Award in Four Years Confirms Marin’s Position as a Leader in Europe

By April 3rd, 2014

We were delighted to pick up our fifth UK and European Search Award at last week’s ceremony in Iceland for our work with MoneySuperMarket. The award recognised the innovative work we carried out with MoneySuperMarket to build an open stack of technology to drive PPC efficiency alongside our partners Adometry and BlueKai. MoneySuperMarket took advantage of Revenue Connect to optimise paid search in Marin Enterprise using post-attributed data from Adometry, and optimised paid search campaigns based on audience data integrated from BlueKai into Marin through Audience Connect. The judges for the award commented:

“Judges felt this campaign pushed PPC efficiency to its limit showing creative innovation through technology integration.”

This fifth award won across the UK and European Search Awards series in four years reaffirms our continued presence as one of the leaders in the European search industry. Our momentum since opening up in 2009 has seen us hire more than 110 staff across 5 locations in Europe, managing campaigns for leading European brands including easyJet, Peugeot, Europcar, Nestle, Adidas, lastminute.com, LeGuide, Philips, Sainsburys and Zoopla. This growth now means we manage more than €1bn in annual European online advertising spend through our platform.

We also want to congratulate our numerous clients and partners who also won at the awards!

4 Best Practices for Search Beyond Google

By March 26th, 2014

Google versus Bing. While they may be duking it out for market share, these two search engines can actually go really well together as part of your overall online marketing portfolio.

According to an October comScore report, Google held 67% market share of searches in the US, while Bing accounted for 18%. Year-over-year, Google’s search share has remained flat while Bing’s has actually grown. If advertisers were to address this logically, they would invest search budget proportionally across these two search engines. However, we often find that advertisers under-invest in Bing, both in terms of budget and time managing/optimizing their accounts.

Crunch all the numbers over here in our full-length write-up, but advertising proportionally on Bing can provide a big boost to your total clicks for no additional spend. Here are some tips to get you started:

  • Start with what you know. Marin makes it easy to replicate your Google accounts in Bing. Simply change the account name, export from “Google” to “Bing,” and then upload. This will take about 10 minutes, provide full coverage across both search engines, and ensure up-to-date and fully optimized ad copy.
  • Evaluate your maximum CPC bids. It may be necessary to lower these, as CPCs are lower on Bing versus Google.
  • Use historical data. Take advantage of your Google keyword performance data in the event that the Bing keywords have no historical data. To do this in Marin, add the Bing keywords to the same Folder where the Google keywords reside.
  • Edit across publishers. Using Marin, optimize keywords from both Google and Bing in the same user interface. Consider setting automated alerts to identify when keywords are under-performing, regardless of which search engine account they belong.

For more info and case studies on the power of adding Bing to your programs, click here. Market-specific data is also available for our readers in the UK and Australia.

Benchmark Report: Mobile Search Advertising Around the Globe

By March 19th, 2014

Our much anticipated mobile benchmark report is here, packed full of data and graphs that illuminate the mobile search landscape. Make sure to download your full copy of Mobile Search Advertising Across the Globe: 2014 Annual Report.

mobile search advertising by country

Download the full report to see data for 13 countries/regions.

The report show that as consumer adoption of mobile devices has been increasing at a blistering speed, digital advertisers have matched the momentum, moving ad spend onto mobile devices to take advantage of this new channel. With mobile devices already accounting for over one third of all paid-search clicks, it’s clear why everyone has their eye on smartphone and tablet advertising. Smart allocation of ad spend on mobile will help advertisers stay ahead of the competition, as the landscape morphs into a more interconnected, mobile consumer-base.

In 2013, we saw US mobile click share break the one third mark with spend share close behind. Smartphones make up the majority of the mobile clicks and spend, emphasizing the widespread adoption of smartphones and increased ad integration within these devices.  In addition, smartphones and tablets have comparable click-through rates compared to desktops, while mobile cost per click remains lower than that of desktops. This means that performance has caught up, but competition on mobile isn’t full-blown yet.

Our data shows similar trends across the world, with mobile click and spend share growing at a remarkable pace. In some regions, mobile advertising is growing even faster than in the US. Across Europe, mobile device adoption has led spend share to nearly double in the last year, and click-through rates have shot above that of desktops. This is a strong indicator of the emerging value mobile devices hold for performance advertisers.

The pace of worldwide mobile adoption has changed the digital marketing paradigm on a global scale. With smartphones and desktops adding another layer of complexity on top of the conventional desktop model, advertisers have more opportunity to reach their audience than ever before. To learn about the opportunity to expand into new markets, or simply to benchmark your own campaigns, make sure to download the full report here.

Teaming Up with Boost Media

By March 4th, 2014

One of the single most effective ways a digital marketer can improve the performance of a campaign is through better ad copy. To help advertisers get more out of their creative, we’ve teamed up with Boost Media (formerly BoostCTR).

While this isn’t the first time Marin Software has worked with Boost, this is the first time Boost makes an appearance in the Marin app. Thanks to Marin’s open architecture, the performance of Boost optimized campaigns can now be viewed directly within Marin, saving joint customers all sorts of time in addition to providing insights that can then be used to make immediate changes.

BoostCTR in Marin Software
If you’re not familiar with Boost, the company offers marketers a network of 1,000+ expert copywriters skilled in creating compelling, high-performance ad copy for both search and social. Check them out.

What Facebook’s Campaign Restructure Means For You

By March 3rd, 2014

In late November, news broke that Facebook was planning a major overhaul to its advertising campaign structure in Q1. The revised campaign structure will include a new management “level” called the Ad Set, that will sit in between the Campaign and Ad levels.

Since the initial information leak, little has been publicly shared from Facebook as to what the new campaign structure will look like, how it will benefit advertisers, and how their workflow will be impacted. Sensing the significance of the overhaul, you may remember that we shared our thoughts here on the blog soon after.

After months of waiting, Facebook recently made an official announcement on the Facebook for Business blog. They confirmed that existing Facebook campaigns will be migrated on March 4th (tomorrow!). The new structure is described as a “simpler way to organize and optimize campaigns on Facebook,” and is aimed to improve advertiser workflow, reporting and optimization.

Today’s Facebook marketers may have hundreds or thousands of campaigns within an account targeting different audiences and objectives. For example, an advertiser could have 15% of their campaigns focused on acquiring more fans, 20% focused on driving mobile or desktop app engagement, and 65% focused on website acquisition toward an ROI objective. Managing thousands of campaigns across hundreds of targeted audiences with mixed objectives can be confusing and problematic for advertisers without a sophisticated management platform.

By moving to a new “3-tiered” campaign taxonomy, Facebook hopes to provide marketers with a better way to organize campaigns targeting similar business objectives. Using the example above, marketers will now be able to look at campaigns with “ROI” objectives and quickly determine which target audiences (specified at the Ad Set level) are driving the best performance. If a marketer wants to understand which creative design or message resonates best with a particular audience for a given objective, the marketer can then drill into the Ad Set and analyze Ad-level performance.

Marin has been working diligently on the new campaign structure since October and is excited to roll it out to our customers. We expect the impact to our customer’s workflow to be positive for two reasons. First, Marin’s platform architecture has been built on a three-tiered campaign structure since we went GA in 2007. What this means is that our Facebook advertising customers who also use our product for Search and Display will finally have a consistent campaign taxonomy across all their channels. Second, this restructure will allow for an even more streamlined and favorable cross-channel workflow and analytics experience.

As a Marin Facebook advertiser, here is what you can expect:

Your Existing Campaigns
Marin has partnered with Facebook to transition our mutual clients on Friday March 14th, in accordance with our i48 release. On this date, existing campaigns will be migrated to the new structure automatically, both in Facebook and in Marin. No additional steps will be required of the advertiser. The campaign will simply inherit the new setting, the “Objective.”

Creation of Ad Sets
Ad Sets will be created between the Campaign and Ad levels and inherit the settings of your existing campaigns.

Your Ads
Nothing will happen to your Ads as a result of the migration – everything will remain the same.

Your Customer Success Team is Here to Help
Marin believes in offering industry-leading support and service to our Facebook customers. We know this transition has big implications, and we want to be there to help. Please reach out to your Customer Success Team soon to discuss any questions or concerns about the transition. Following the transition, they will be eager to help you assimilate into your new workflow in Marin.

Best Practices Webinar!
On Tuesday, March 11, Marin will be holding a webinar for our customers to go through our new improved UI. We will be will also cover best practices for campaign creation, editing, and optimization with the new structure. Marin customers will be receiving an invitation via email in the coming days, so stay tuned!

In Search of Marinterns at Super Saturday

By February 28th, 2014

The search for summer interns is already on, and our recruiting team has been hitting the road! On Wednesday, we met with students at the Cal Internship & Summer Job Fair. Then on Thursday, we traveled to Oregon State University in Portland. (Did you know we now have an office in Portland?)

But the real apex was our “Super Saturday” event this past weekend. Our recruiters welcomed awesome students from Stanford and Cal to our headquarters for breakfast and a great conversion with Joe Chang, one of Marin’s co-founders and chief technical officer. Joe is also a proud Stanford grad. Students got to learn more about the ad tech space, what Marin’s been up to, and why it’s such a neat place to work. They also had the opportunity to interview for summer positions, in an engaging speed-dating style.

Finally it was off to lunch at Super Duper, to make it a truly super Saturday! (If you’re in the Bay Area, you’ll definitely want to try their burgers and shakes.) Thanks to all students who attended – it was great to meet you! And thanks also to our recruiting team for pulling off such a fun event.

Fun Fact: One of our engineers who attended Super Saturday was actually in the first class of Marin interns!

 

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