Winning the shift to mobile: A new guide to mastering micro-moments

Thursday, September 24, 2015 | 7:30 AM

Mobile has changed the marketing world. Today we're launching an executive guide that shows how brands like Sephora, Virgin America, Walgreens and Home Depot are conquering that new world. It's called Micro-Moments: Your Guide to Winning the Shift to Mobile.

Smartphones have given marketers billions of new daily moments to connect with people. Some of those moments are better for marketing than others, of course: you’re not looking for brand engagement as you post your vacation photos from Bermuda to make your friends jealous.

But there are many more moments when we all turn to our devices and welcome what brands have to say. Those are the I-want-to-know, I-want-to-go, I want-to-do, and I want-to-buy moments when we look for answers, plan ahead and make decisions. At Google, we call these micro-moments.

In these micro-moments, consumers are often more loyal to their immediate needs than to a particular brand. In fact, 65% of smartphone users say that when searching on their smartphones, they look for the most relevant information regardless of the company providing the information.

That makes micro-moments a real land of opportunity. And there's a clear way for brands to win: Identify the moments that matter to their customers, commit to being there with relevant and useful content, and deliver frictionless experiences across devices and channels.

It's essential to be useful: only 9% of users will stay on a mobile site or app if they can't find what they want, it's too slow or it just doesn’t satisfy their needs.

Our new micro-moments guide can help your brand win the shift to mobile and crack the micro-moments code. It’s full of actionable insights to help you...

  • Be There: Anticipate the micro-moments for users in your industry, and be in place when they happen.

  • Be Useful: Be relevant to consumers’ micro-moment needs and connect them to the answers and content they’re looking for.

  • Be Quick: Deliver a fast and frictionless mobile experience.

  • Connect the Dots: Reshape your measurement strategy and teams to extract the full value of micro-moments on all screens and channels.
Download the micro-moments guide and look over the executive summary. We hope the brand studies in particular will inspire ideas for your clients’ content, campaigns and mobile site and app experiences.

1. Consumers in the Micro-Moment, Wave 3, Google/Ipsos, U.S., August 2015, n=1291 online smartphone users 18+
2. Consumers in the Micro-Moment, Wave 3, Google/Ipsos, U.S., August 2015, n=1291 online smartphone users 18+

Explore New Data With The Interactive Travel Dashboard

Tuesday, August 25, 2015 | 12:08 PM

Wherever travelers go, they're online. Whether planning a trip, navigating a new city, or sharing vacation memories, they turn to the web, using whatever device is at hand. This has completely reshaped the path to purchase, creating many moments of intent. 

Our new interactive travel dashboard uses Google data to show just when those moments happen and how travelers search. Each quarter, we'll be updating the tool to show the latest trends across the car rental, air, and hotel categories so you can plan for the season ahead.

One big trend to watch, as always, is how travelers use smartphones to plan trips. As of March 2015, mobile searches are up 32% YoY for air travel—and 39% YoY for hotels. But the data doesn't just show how people are searching—it also shows where they are looking to go. The top itinerary in summer 2014? Los Angeles to Las Vegas.

For more valuable stats and insights, explore the interactive travel dashboard on Think with Google.

Understanding How Viewability Relates to Brand Metrics for Video Ads

Tuesday, August 11, 2015 | 6:00 AM

As a brand trying to reach consumers in today’s increasingly fragmented media landscape, it is critical that you understand the impact of your ads on brand metrics such as awareness and consideration.

Viewability is the starting point, an initial understanding of whether the ad had a chance to be seen. We have talked before about why measuring the viewability of advertising matters.

In December 2014, we shared insights on the state of display ad viewability across the web. As a continuation of that effort, in May we released new insights from our video ad platforms, including YouTube, to start the discussion about the state of video ad viewability.

We wanted to take this research a step further, by analyzing the relationship between viewability and brand metrics.

To do so, we took our Brand Lift solution, which gives you insights into what impact your ads have on the consumer journey - from awareness, to ad recall, to brand interest - and tied the data to viewability metrics from our Active View technology for a set of YouTube TrueView ads. By connecting these two solutions, we were able to draw out some insights about the relationship between viewability and brand metrics.

Sight, Sound and Motion Combined Drive Higher Lift

When it comes to brand metrics, ad recall is a foundation for measuring the impact of your ad. As a brand advertiser, knowing if your ad breaks through with users is a key first step to understanding the overall impact of an ad on a suite of brand metrics. In this analysis, we were able to analyze how being able to hear and see your ad affected a user’s ability to recall your ad.

Our data shows that users exposed to even one aspect of your video ad (audio or video only), exhibit significant lift in ad recall. However, the full immersive experience of sight, sound and motion delivers more ad recall than either audio or video alone. In fact, the impact on ad recall was 23% higher when users were exposed to ads with audio and video together versus ads with just audio alone.

The Longer in View, the Better You Do (on Brand Metrics)

Time in view also plays a large role when it comes to moving the needle on brand awareness and consideration. We recently introduced the ability for Active View users to measure average viewable time - the average time, in seconds, a given ad appeared on screen - in Doubleclick Bid Manager. By connecting these measurements, we can see the relationship between viewable time and brand metrics.

We found that there is a consistent relationship between how long an ad is viewable and increases in brand awareness and consideration. The longer a user views your ad, the higher the lift in these two important brand metrics

What the Results Mean for Your Brand

These results prompt you to think about your brand advertising in a few important ways:
  • Are users viewing your creative for longer periods of time? Brand metrics continue to get higher the longer a user views your ad.
  • Are you buying the right media to have an impact on brand metrics? YouTube’s opt-in TrueView ads are uniquely suited to deliver long-form video content at scale for brand advertisers.
  • Finally, are you thinking beyond viewability to capture effectiveness metrics? You want your ads to move consumers at the moments that matter, and measuring the impact on brand metrics will make for more effective ad spend.
This is just the beginning of understanding what impacts brand metrics for video ads. As brands look to measure the effectiveness of their digital video advertising, a continued understanding of what factors drive brand metrics will be crucial to more effective brand spend.

Read further research on the impact of online video.

To read all of our research on viewability, check out

To see how viewability is measured, visit our interactive Active View demo.

Sanaz Ahari, Group Product Manager, Brand Measurement

Learn how to design and build HTML5 with Google Web Designer

Monday, July 27, 2015 | 9:45 AM

We dubbed last week #HTML5Week and Google Web Designer launched multiple HTML5 resources, hangouts and product updates to help make it easier to build all your ads in HTML5. Today, we are pleased to announce the launch of our Google Web Designer Certification exam and training resources.

Google Web Designer helps you create engaging HTML5 content. Use animations and interactive elements to bring your creative vision to life and enjoy integrations with other Google products, including a shared asset library and one-click-to-publish integration with DoubleClick Studio, compatibility with AdWords, and the ability to collaborate on works-in-progress in Google Drive.

The new Google Web Designer Fundamentals certification allows users to demonstrate proficiency and understanding of the Google Web Designer interface and features. You'll learn:
- The Google Web Designer interface
- How to create templates and animations
- How to build interstitial ads
- How to build advanced expandable ads

The program consists of a </span>step-by-step eLearning takes you through the basics of Google Web Designer and helps you get trained quickly in building HTML5 ads using the tool. Once you finish the eLearning and build a few test ads, you can take a certification exam to test your knowledge and demonstrate your proficiency. If you pass the certification, you can get your name listed on the Certified Users list in the Rich Media Gallery.

We hope this new certification exam helps you learn the ins and outs of the Google Web Designer tool, so that you can more easily create your HTML5 ads.
Posted by Becky Chappell, Product Marketing Manager, DoubleClick and Google Web Designer Your New Home for Google’s Insights Tools

Monday, July 20, 2015 | 12:00 PM

Today, our lives are lived in moments. We share vacation photos with family and check in on what our friends are up to. There are also other types of moments: the I-want-to-know, I-want-to-go, I-want-to-do, and I-want-to-buy moments. These moments, when we act on a specific intent and expect an immediate answer, happen all the time and all along the consumer decision journey. And they’re increasingly happening on digital platforms.

As we are now able to immediately act on our impulses to answer a question, learn a skill or find the best product for us, the link between our action and our intent has never been closer. The challenge for marketers is to quickly aggregate all of the intent behind these moments into something meaningful, some sense of understanding what consumers truly desire.

Enter Google. Google has the innovative technologies to turn this massive data set into data that can help people create new services and solve big problems.

Even with the biggest of data sets, it’s hard to engineer an insight.  Google provides the factbase of category, consumer, brand, and content data from which just about anyone can find something interesting. But in the hands of experts – the brand managers, planners and creatives of the world – your expertise can turn our findings into true insights. When we can put our data and our tools into your hands, truly groundbreaking work is possible. A centralized location for Google’s insights tools
To help you better harness the power of our data, we have redesigned as a central starting point for the insights discovery process.  Here, you can understand how our solutions help you to understand the intent behind the moments that matter:    

  • Google Consumer Surveys: make confident business decisions with fast, accurate, and insightful market research
  • Google Trends: Anticipate industry trends before they happen, with real-time insights into search behavior
  • Google Correlate: See how seasonality, location, and world events affect search behavior relevant to your industry

In addition, you will find links to compelling, research-driven insights we have published so far, as well as examples on how other brands have partnered with Google and used our data and tools to successfully drive their businesses forward.

Companies of all sizes and across all industries rely on our data and tools to discover how to find solutions to problems and understand what moves consumers.  Today and tomorrow, Google will be there to partner with marketers to help solve their most challenging questions.

Top 100 Brands Report: Insight into Brand Content on YouTube

Sunday, July 19, 2015 | 5:00 PM

YouTube recently celebrated its 10th birthday, and with this milestone in mind we reflected on how YouTube has become a daily part of the lives of millions of people. Communities, both small and large, explore their passions on YouTube. Car buyers check out potential purchases with in-action auto videos, gamers discover the latest games through a deep library of trailers, and new moms gain insights around parenting from both brands and mommy vloggers. 

Ten years in, YouTube is a daily go-to destination for people who seek to connect with others around their passions and interests. In a recent survey of 18-34 year old millennials, YouTube was most chosen out of their top 3 favorite video destinations to watch online videos.1 Statistics like this show why YouTube is growing faster than it has in years—watch time is up 60% across devices, and 100% on mobile year over year.2

Viewers are also coming to YouTube specifically to watch content from brands. In fact, four of the top 10 trending videos on all of YouTube in 2014 were created by brands.3 We recently partnered with Pixability to analyze viewership and publishing trends from the Top 100 Brands as defined by the Interbrand 2014 Best Global Brands ranking. 

Viewership of brand content is growing
Brands are seeing an explosion of engagement and views on YouTube. Views of branded content of the top 100 brands have nearly doubled in the last 12 months: consumers have watched their videos more than 40B times in total,4 with over 18B of those views taking place in the last year.5 And brands are building sustained relationships with their viewers on YouTube: brand channel subscriptions are up 47% year over year.6  Brands like Toyota have experienced this engagement growth firsthand:   

“The benefit of a diverse platform like YouTube is they have an unparalleled ability to reach a variety of demographics,” says Dionne Colvin-Lovely, Director, Traditional & New Media, Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A. “That aligns very well with Toyota’s diverse consumer and product lineup. YouTube allows our brand’s message to break through in an impactful way, and it offers great metrics to see if the content is resonating with the intended audience.”

Brands are becoming more active on YouTube
Brands are now adopting similar content strategies as some of our most successful creators on YouTube. They’re actively managing their YouTube channels, and publishing new content on a regular basis to engage viewers and keep them coming back. According to Pixability, the Interbrand Top 100 brands are collectively uploading a video to YouTube every 18.5 minutes.7 Also a fun fact: Thursday is the most popular day for uploads.8 

In terms of content, 10% of brand videos posted to YouTube in the last year are over 10 minutes long.9 This indicates that brands are creating made-for-YouTube content, which tends to perform better than repurposed material. Brands are realizing if they have an authentic voice, they can engage people familiar with their brand and also attract new customers. Coca-Cola is also using YouTube as a platform on which to build relationships and engage consumers with unique, relevant content:

“We love the opportunity YouTube gives Coca-Cola to interact, build relationships and share stories that are authentic and relevant to the brand,” said Chris Bigda, Director, Connections Planning & Investment, Coca-Cola North America. “We are seeing continued success on the platform, uploading higher quality content and achieving better results for it. We are really proud to be part of the YouTube community and excited by the partnership.”

Screen Shot 2015-07-17 at 11.41.28 AM.png

Wayfair, for example, is using YouTube to experiment with new content and reach untapped demographics:

“YouTube has become an incredibly valuable marketing tool for Wayfair by providing us with a platform to deliver new and authentic content to our customers. It's exciting to see that we're also reaching new audiences for our portfolio of brands,” said Ben Young, Media Manager- Wayfair TV and Video. “Despite our success to date, it feels like we’ve only just scratched the surface with the YouTube platform.” 

Brands are investing more on YouTube
In addition to brands creating more content for YouTube, we’re also seeing that brands are investing more in video ads to promote this content. The average spend of the top 100 video advertisers, as defined by media spend, is up 60%,10 and the number of advertisers investing in video ads is up 40% year over year.11  By investing in YouTube, these advertisers aren’t just building their brand, they’re also contributing to the YouTube ecosystem.

These first 10 years are just the beginning—we’re looking forward to seeing how brands will continue to evolve and innovate on YouTube over the next 10.

Posted by Cenk Bulbul, Head of Strategy and Insights, YouTube Ads Marketing

1. BAVC Consulting & YouTube Marketing, Custom Survey Study Millennials (150 18-34 year olds), US data July 2015
2. YouTube Global Data, Q2 2015 compared to Q2 2014
3. YouTube Trends Data, 2014
4. Top 100 Brands Pixability research, all time global data (2005-2015)
5. Top 100 Brands Pixability research, June 2014 to June 2015
6. Top 100 Brands Pixability research, Jan to June 2014 and Jan to June 2015
7. Top 100 Brands Pixability research, Jan to June 2015
8. Top 100 Brands Pixability research, all time global data (2005-2015)
9. Top 100 Brands Pixability research, global data June 2014 to June 2015
10. Google Global Data, April to June 2014 and April to June 2015, Top 100 advertisers list determined by media spend.
11. Google Global Data, April to June 2014 and April to June 2015

Making it easier to deliver compelling experiences across screens

Tuesday, June 30, 2015 | 2:54 PM

Making it easier to deliver compelling experiences across screens
We’ve explained how Programmatic Guaranteed in DoubleClick Bid Manager and Native Ads in DoubleClick for Publishers help ensure your brand shows up in the right place and context. But once you’re present, you have to show a relevant, engaging message to each viewer. Today, we’re excited to launch three new mobile video formats for DoubleClick and a new Creative Preview App, to make it easier to deliver compelling experiences across screens.
Bring interactive video to mobile devices: Video Cue Points component in Google Web Designer
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. Interactive HTML5 banners with video might take 2-3 weeks of developer time to hand code, but with Google Web Designer and our Video Cue Points component, it can take as little as 3-4 hours.

“Teaser Reels” mobile video component in DoubleClick Studio
With Teaser Reels, you can easily create an HTML5 display ad with an autoplay video teaser. Imagine an interstitial between game levels or directly within mobile web content - a user sees the teaser video automatically and then can click to play the entire video on their device. This will be launching in mid-July, so check back on our help center for more details. (Studio login required)

New mobile in-app templates in Google Web Designer
Our mobile starter templates make it easy to create rich in-app experiences, such as this expandable HTML5 video unit, built by the creative agency 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
Once you've built ads specifically designed for mobile, you'll want to preview them across device types to ensure the user experience is positive in every environment and size. We’ve launched the 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. Now you can preview and test mobile ads in an actual mobile environment. You can also test the exits in your ads to see reporting metrics come through in the DoubleClick Studio output console on your desktop.
We’re working to make the process of building rich, engaging ads for every environment more seamless for brands and agencies, from creative authoring through to delivering the right ad to the right customer at the right time.

Posted by Karin Hennessy, Product Manager, DoubleClick Creative Solutions