Every week here at The Search Agency, we round up the latest in digital marketing news. Stay connected with us to keep up-to-date on what’s new, what’s trending and what to look out for in the near future.
Google Drive Has a New Look!
Google Drive’s Rebrand to Google One Includes Offers for Hotels Found in Search
Google is rolling out its rebranded and updated paid Google Drive plans under the new name “Google One.” The updated plans come with lower pricing, but what will interest marketers is a new “Benefits” section in the Google One app.
At launch, the “Benefits” section offers customers a $5 USD credit for the Google Play Store and also features discounts on hotels found in Google Search. Customers will see links to “Look for Google One member prices and save up to 40% on selected hotels you find in Google Search.”
Google clearly has plans to build out this section with more offers from other Google properties, including Google Express, its e-commerce program with retailers.
From Google One VP Pavni Diwanji:
“With Google One, you’ll also get extra benefits across Google. We’ve started with credits on Google Play and deals on hotels found in Google Search. In the coming months, keep an eye out for Google Store and Google Express benefits and more.”
Google One plans are now available to anyone in the U.S. While this seems like a bit of an AAA benefits program for marketers, we’re definitely noticing the trend of subscription or paid plans offering benefits to members as incentives across all industries.
More Info is Good Info
Google Launches New, Expandable Featured Snippets with More Information
Google has announced a new form of featured snippets aimed at showing users more useful aspects of the topic around their search. So, when you search for a query that triggers this new format, you’ll get a handful of expandable snippets below the main featured snippet with more information.
For example, if you search for “quartz vs. granite,” you’ll get the main featured snippet, with images, and then four additional featured snippets that can be expanded to show you ideas on costs, benefits, weight and durability. Another example can be seen when searching for “emergency fund.” Not only do you get the main featured snippet, but you’ll also see expandable tabs labeled “Size,” “Importance,” “Savings Account” and “Purpose.”
Let’s Get Political!
Google’s Political Ad Transparency Report and Library Offers More Accountability Around Election Ads
Google is building more transparency into the political ads and advertisers running campaigns on its ad networks. After updating its political ad policies in May — enforcing new ID requirements for anyone purchasing political ads — the company is now sharing its first transparency report focusing solely on political ads, as well as a political ad library.
Google first announced it would be releasing a public political ad transparency report and library of political ads that have been verified three months ago, and made them available last Wednesday.
The political ad transparency report includes a breakdown of money spent on political ads by state and by congressional district, as well as a list of top political advertisers based on how much they’re spending on Google ad campaigns.
There’s also a table highlighting the most popular keywords used by political advertisers, based on ad spend for each keyword or phrase.
The political ad library is a searchable archive of political ads appearing on Google’s ad networks going back to May 31, 2018. Queries can be filtered to find ads that ran during a specific date range, the amount spent on the ad’s campaign, impressions or the type of ad (image, video and text).
Transparency and safety are top-of-mind for Google and other digital ad platforms when it comes to political advertisers and campaigns. Almost all major social platforms have updated their ad policies after the discovery that the Russian government interfered in the 2016 U.S. elections by pumping malicious ad content into Facebook and Twitter (and to a lesser degree, Google).
Also, like Google, both Facebook and Twitter launched searchable ad archives. Twitter’s Ad Transparency Center shows all ads (not just political ads) shown in the past seven days. Facebook’s ad archive includes political and issue ad content going back seven years.
We think this kind of transparency is great, but the biggest benefit of this is we get to learn from these political ad campaigns. Data might not be easily transferable across industries, but it could possibly become a good lesson in audience targeting.
Do you have any digital marketing news tips? Let us know in the comments or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.