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How to use AI and machine-learning with Google Ads

Written by Amber Dawson

The whole Adzooma platform. For free

These trying times are tough for all. So we're giving away our whole award-winning platform for free until June 1st 2020. That's automated PPC ads, one-click optimisations, and world-class reporting - at zero cost.

No strings attached. No credit card required.

We look at how Google Ads tools work with AI to optimise PPC campaigns and explore how they can help your business.

There’s no doubt that Google Ads is extremely popular. A lot of businesses have uncovered the huge benefits of online advertising and are fighting for a piece of their industry’s pie.

And, as always, everyone is looking to make their lives easier. That’s where Artificial Intelligence (AI) is stepping up its game.

But, there’s a lot of grey area surrounding Artificial Intelligence. This is primarily because people don’t fully understand what it is. And it’s easy to see why. Nobody ever starts off a conversation about complicated things with a quick and easy definition. No, that would be far too helpful.

So, if you’re asking yourself: ‘What is AI?’, here you go:

"Artificial intelligence is a branch of computer science that works to simulate and imitate intelligent human behaviour.“

That's quite a dry definition though. And as with most dry definitions, it doesn't really say a lot. So, let's expand it out a bit.

Basically, AI is about making intelligent programs and machines. This encompasses loads of different divisions of technology including machine learning, robots and automation.

Robots can now automate physical or manufacturing tasks, machine learning can streamline computer calculations and automation removes tedious, repetitive tasks from your workload. There are thousands of benefits, but many people are scared of where it will lead us in the future.

The Fear of AI and Machine Learning

Let’s quickly look at why people fear the growth of artificial intelligence.

It’s not an unfounded concern. A conversation that talks about AI frequently jumps to how robots are going to steal everyone’s jobs. Technology has been accelerating at insane speeds for decades and most of the time people embrace the changes it brings. So why now are people freaking out?

The primary worry is that soon, basic jobs won’t need doing because they’ll be done by machines. This is somewhat true, but looking at this as a completely bad thing is all wrong. It’s not a good versus evil story.

Firstly, AI is already a part of your day-to-day life: it’s the reason for so many conveniences you already take advantage of. Netflix uses AI to suggest what you should binge-watch next. Amazon uses it to recommend other items you might want to buy. Chatbots help you skip the line with customer service queries.

Most people are okay with this, and enjoy the benefits of an easier life without asking how technology can know their habits so well.In fact, 51% of marketing leaders are already using AI.

But when this is applied to their livelihoods and how a computer can do things faster and more accurately than them, opinions change.

We don’t need to see AI as a threat – it’s designed to make things easier. To take away the tasks you don’t want to be doing anyway. If technology can do the calculations faster and more accurately, why would you say no? It doesn’t mean you’re not needed anymore, but rather that your human expertise is free to focus on the more important stuff.

This is particularly true for PPC AI – these clever machines can supplement an account manager's workload on their campaigns and improve productivity. You don’t need to spend your time number-crunching if it’s already been done for you. It's like refusing to use a calculator and doing all the math by hand because you just don't trust the machines.

Moreover, machine learning and AI may simulate human actions but it doesn’t mean they're human. They don’t have the creative flair, the emotion or the personality that we do. So, until they develop robots with souls, you don’t need to panic.

AI and Google Ads Tools

People get worried when you mention AI, but are you okay with using an AI Google Ads management tool. But really, they’re often the same thing. A lot of Google Ads tools utilise AI to get rid of things which don’t need to waste a human's time.

The reason you look to a Google Ads manager for help is to save time. How do you think a tool is able to do it so much quicker? Artificial intelligence.

It's not as scary when you think of it like that. It's just taking the legwork out of things you don't want to do anyway.

Repetitive tasks that take up the valuable time of a PPC manager are expensive. If automated bidding and AI generated ads can save you just ten minutes on each account a day, and you have 10 accounts, that’s over 8 hours a week saved – or a full working day. Now, you're interested, aren't you?

Why use AI for Google Ads?

We now have access to more data than we could previously dream of. Marketers don't have to use gut-instinct or guesswork now there are cold hard facts to look at. We can work out how to target the perfect people. We know exactly what we want to achieve. Our objectives are more specific than ever.

This is all great stuff, but unless we've also invented a time machine, we're going to need some help getting through it all.

This is where AI comes in: it allows you to be smarter with your time by automating tasks. It's not replacing you but simply taking away the tedious tasks from your to-do list.

Being stubborn and insisting that machines can't help will soon mean that you just get left behind. Plus, your competition will know how to do things quicker and more efficiently than ever before.

The whole Adzooma platform. For free

These trying times are tough for all. So we're giving away our whole award-winning platform for free until June 1st 2020. That's automated PPC ads, one-click optimisations, and world-class reporting - at zero cost.

No strings attached. No credit card required.

Why Google Likes Ads AI

Whether you or your colleagues have concerns over the progression of AI, at the end of the day it's the tech giants that will lead the way in whether it becomes part of our future or not.

Google likes AI.

You can see it in their current updates.

They're pushing you into using AI more and more. New updates inside Google Ads mean that soon you won't be able to opt for accelerated delivery. This is just one way Google is encouraging you to adopt its preferred methods.

In this case, Google wants you to use their smart bidding feature. Powered by machine learning, automated bidding works by automating your bid delivery so that you don't have to manually make changes. It aims to make your life easier as you don't have to manually make changes.

However, smart bidding needs a lot of data to work. If you don't currently have more than 30 conversions a month, this isn't something you can adopt just yet. But it shows you the landscape for the future of PPC AI.

It's a way of scaling up your campaigns without having to outsource things. This is great news, and with nearly 70% of advertisers taking advantage of smart bidding, others are clearly thinking the same way.

Another way Google are getting people immersed in automated ad creation and ai ad optimisation is through Responsive Search Ads (RSAs). The way they work is that you create up to 15 headlines and four descriptions which can work in any combination. Then, Google Ads AI tests different combinations and works out what performs the best.

RSAs are a great way of making your campaigns flexible. It also means you can leave all the hard work to Google as it decides what’s best to show to each customer.

Smart bidding and RSAs are the future of Ads AI – adopting them into your campaigns will help you stay ahead of the competition, whilst actually making your life easier.

The Benefits of Using AI for Google Ads Management

If you're used to managing PPC campaigns on a day-to-day basis, you know the struggles. In order to improve, you have to know what's working and what isn't. That means data – a lot of it. Looking through it is a time-consuming process that doesn't exactly make you want to jump out of bed in the morning.

This is where automation can really help you. For example, it can be difficult to think of keywords when creating new campaigns, and there are different free tools that will automate these tasks for you.

So you can save time and energy thinking of combinations with them right in front of you. This will generate permutations of the words you enter which you can then easily flick through.

Free tools are a great way of saving time. The Adzooma Performance Report for example identifies ways to improve your Google Ads in less than 60 seconds.

Find out more and download your free report.

You may not expect AI to look like this, you may think this is rather simplistic. But this is a good thing. It takes away the hard work and means you can focus on other important tasks. This time can be used to focus on tasks which can only be done by a human.

How much does AI cost?

The cost of using an AI tool for help with your campaigns will vary. A frequent misconception is that using AI has to cost a fortune. Yes, some Artificial Intelligence can be expensive, but like anything, it depends on what you’re using it for. Adzooma uses AI for its automation feature, and the platform is cost-effective compared to competitors.

When it comes to Google Ads management tools, there's a range of options out there for any budget. If you choose the right tool, it'll be an investment. This means that your campaigns will benefit long term and you'll save time and money in the long run.

So, be sure you don’t discount AI straight away because of the cost.

How to Work with AI and Machine Learning Tools

The best Google Ads campaigns will use a mixture of human expertise and artificial intelligence. It will take time to get the balance right, but the results when you perfect it will be worth it.

You don't have to be a big business to take advantage of AI. It's not something that's reserved for those with money. As discussed, it can be cost-effective when it's in bitesize pieces. And that's all you need.

You’re not trying to harvest thousands of crops or power a multi-billion platform. You just want to simplify your day to day PPC management processes.

It's important to spend the time working out how much you could get out of artificial intelligence. After all, it’s continuously growing. The software you invest in now needs to be continually working to add features and harness the power that machine learning offers.

The free tools out there which offer permutations or match types are helpful but limited. You need to look past the basics and think about the best-case scenario. In an ideal situation, what tasks would you want to get rid of? What would you like your campaigns to look like? Picture that, and work towards it. Make the most of the possibilities of AI.

The Future of Google Ads AI

Automation has already changed the way people run their Google Ads. For starters, it's made things a lot more accessible. Before, you had to be an expert to know what to do after a certain level. Now, there are machines that can give you a helping hand.

This is great for a lot of other things as well. You don't have to know the ins and outs of everything to make it work.

What Artificial Intelligence has brought to Google Ads management is huge. And it's only going to keep accelerating. The best path forward is one that makes the most of human strengths and machine learning.

AI is great. That's why we use it to power Adzooma. Just some of the features it powers are:

The Opportunity Engine

The Opportunity Engineuses AI to analyse your account and suggests improvements based on your specific data. You get to decide whether to action them or not, so you're always in control. But you don’t have to spend time discovering what changes would get you the best results.

Our handy queue feature means that you can add all the opportunities to a list and get an overview of the amount of time, money and clicks you’ll gain by implementing them. The best thing? Once you're happy all it takes is a single click to apply them.

There are over 50 opportunities that can be suggested covering everything from best practices, reducing wasted spend, improving performance and account structure

Automated Rules

In the name of making your life easier, we introduce automation rules.

You can't sleep with one eye open. Well, maybe you can but you'll have bags bigger than when I go to Lidl before you know it.

But then, how can you be sure your campaigns aren’t going over budget? That your keywords aren’t going rogue or that you're not missing out those prime-time clicks.

Well, if you set up automated rules then you can sleep like a baby. Adzooma will handle it all for you, and you’ll be notified of any changes. Alternatively, you can just be notified when something happens so you can manually make changes.

You can set up rules for all sorts of different things. For example, you can set up a rule so that if a certain campaign has less than 10 clicks in a week, you can turn it off. Similarly, if a keyword received less than 100 impressions, you could decrease the budget. Every rule can be customised to make your life easier and ensure that your campaigns are running as you want them to.

Automation and AI advertising tools are really just another step in reducing your workload.

Reporting

Adzooma also lets you create custom reports quickly and easily. This is another way to reduce the repetition in your day to day job. The custom reporting feature allows you to build the data you need into a clear report and then export as a PDF.

A common problem with reports is that the few facts you actually need are buried under loads of information you don't. Adzooma lets you strip things back and get to what you need quickly.

You can add your own logo to the report and save drafts to make things even quicker next time. Using machines to automate reports means that sending key information to clients and colleagues is no longer a hardship.

This is particularly important for bigger agencies which handle hundreds of clients and thousands of campaigns.

Ready to use the power of AI?

FAQs

Is ‘OK Google’ an AI?

Yes, Ok Google, or Google Assistant is an AI that, when asked a question, scours the results in Google’s search index and returns the most relevant answers for you.

How does Google use AI for marketing?

Google’s engineers use AI and automation in many ways, including maximising relevance and performance on YouTube, delivering more responsive search ads, driving more foot traffic through local campaigns and so on. You can learn more about how Google uses machine learning for advertising on the company’s website.