Back in June of this year, Google announced the launch of its latest AI-powered campaign named Demand Gen. An upgrade from Discovery ads, Demand Gen ads claim to be a way for advertisers to increase ad creativity and create new demand for their products and/or services.
Demand Gen campaigns claim to allow advertisers to get in front of consumers at the right moment, using extremely visual and immersive ads, in order to drive sales, traffic and lead generation on platforms like YouTube, Discovery and Gmail. That’s a potential audience of over 3 billion users.
This is what they look like:
Currently, advertisers can choose to be a part of the beta test for this new type of campaign. This means that if you already have a Discovery campaign(s) active in your Google Ads account and choose to take part in the beta test, your Discovery campaign(s) will automatically be upgraded. Then, starting from next month (October 2023), select Discovery ads campaigns will automatically upgrade to Demand Gen. See the full timeline here:
How do Demand Gen ads compare to Discovery ads?
Here is an overview of the differences between the two and what is new with Demand Gen:
Demand Gen ads can also appear in YouTube Shorts and In-stream, along with the usual YouTube placements, Discovery, and Gmail etc. giving an increase in potential reach.
Tailored ad experiences
New Demand Gen campaigns allow advertisers to upload a variety of assets including short films, carousels, plus portrait and square images to the one campaign, allowing advertisers to engage with their audience in a variety of ways.
Flexible bidding options
As well as being able to set the campaign up to optimise for conversions or conversion value, Demand Gen campaigns can also be set to maximise clicks bidding strategy. This means that they can be used to generate sales/leads but also to generate extra traffic, too, and different creative can be used for each marketing objective, where appropriate.
Reporting and measurement
Performance is said to be a lot more transparent with this new campaign, with several extra layers of analysis available; conversion path reports, data-driven attribution and Brand Lift measurement. Plus Conversion Lift metrics will be coming soon.
Lookalike segments will be available in Demand Gen campaigns, allowing advertisers to submit their first-party data so that Google can find users with similar intent and interest signals. Also, device targeting will be an added option in the coming weeks/months.
New ad previews
Another great feature is the redesigned workflow and ad previews that are accessible at campaign creation:
This tool allows advertisers to easily see what their ads might look like across different platforms. And even better, there’s the option to A/B test creative across the various inventories (Discover, Gmail and YouTube).
To find out more about the experiments see: https://support.google.com/google-ads/answer/13719071?sjid=18150382246938531126-EU
Is Demand Gen for everyone?
As with any ad campaign, it will need to be tested before we know how well it performs and that won’t be possible for all advertisers. However, for those wanting to increase their reach and get their product/service in front of a new audience, as long as they are likely to be using Discover, Gmail and YouTube, this new campaign type may well be worth a punt.
With all Google campaigns, the advertiser is in control of the budget, so they can spend as much or as little as they want, but my gut says that this will require a fair bit of budget to learn what works and what doesn’t, money that many small businesses may not be able to afford.