2024 PPC Predictions

Short Form Video to Dominate

YouTube is the highest-reaching social media service among UK online adults using smartphones, tablets or computers, taking the top spot in May 2023 from Facebook and the demand for more bite sized, snackable content is at an all-time high. In fact, Talk Shoppe are reporting viewers are now watching more short-form video than studio-produced TV and films (Google/TalkShoppe 2023).

Short-form video has become an integral part of marketing strategies. Things to remember:

  • Ensure content is concise and engaging.
  • Focusing on storytelling to grow brand authenticity.
  • Leverage short form trends and challenges.
  • Use captions and subtitles as users watch videos without sounds.
  • Ensure brand consistency.

With the introduction of Demand Gen replacing Discovery, advertisers will be able to incorporate YouTube Shorts into their existing campaigns, ensuring short-form content thrives with the current market trends. As short-form videos are generally less expensive to produce than long-form videos, creators can shoot and edit videos quickly and with less equipment, making it easier to produce high-quality video content on a budget.

Demand Gen offers specific video-first options for advertisers with goals of more views, or more demand. These campaigns reach across a variety of Google inventory.

Generative AI Expansion

Last year, thirty percent of UK internet users aged 16+ said they used a generative artificial intelligence tool – Ofcom: Online Nation 2023

Generative AI is poised to transform both Google and Microsoft Ads, offering a range of benefits for advertisers and users alike. Advertisers can expect to see significant improvements in ad creation, targeting, optimisation, management, and user engagement, leading to enhanced campaign performance and a more impactful user experience.

Keyways generative AI will be utilised across platforms:

  • Enhanced Ad Creation & Optimisation: streamlining the ad creation process. For example, images tailored to specific search queries and user intent. This may also enable real-time ad variation testing and optimisation, leading to improved performance and ROI.
  • Improved Audience Targeting & Reach: gain deeper insights into target audiences, enabling more effective audience segmentation and personalised ad delivery and make cross-channel messaging more consistent.
  • Automated Ad Campaign Management: move beyond machine learning capabilities further enhancing bid optimisation, budgeting, and campaign performance monitoring, ensuring campaigns are maximising their reach and impact.
  • Personalised Ad Experiences: power personalised ad experiences, delivering relevant ad content based on user queries, search history, and past interactions.
  • Conversational Ads and Interactive Engagement: enable conversational ads that engage users in a natural and interactive way, providing personalised product recommendations, answering user questions, and guiding users through the purchase journey. This approach will enhance user engagement and drive conversions.

The Resurgence of Bing

Bing is taking market share from Google, having experienced near-consistent growth since 2015. The second highest reaching search engine, Bing saw its UK online adult reach rise from 33% in January 2023 to 46% in May 2023, following the introduction of Bing AI in February 2023.

The integration of ChatGPT, enhancing AI-powered search, has no doubt encouraged this surge in Bing growth, bringing an early tech adopter/tech savvy audience to the Microsoft search engine. Roughly a third of all users of ‘The New Bing’ are utilising the ChatGPT functionality daily, averaging three chats per session. This demonstrates a longer-term shift in behaviour which is promising for advertisers seeking new opportunities.

In addition, very few people use two search engines, which means Microsoft Ads represents an incremental audience. If you’re struggling to further scale keywords/campaigns in Google Ads, Microsoft Ads provides a great opportunity to grow reach.

Continued Rise of Voice Search

Smart speakers are becoming more and more common in households across the world. Alexa and Google Home started out as a novelty at first, but voice technologies have continued to improve with more people using voice search as a convenient and hands-free way to find information. Today, more than one in four people regularly use voice search on their mobile devices. During 2024 experts estimate the number of voice assistants in use globally will reach 8.4 billion.

Here are some of the key areas to consider in your PPC strategy when targeting voice SERPS:

  • Integrate natural language patterns into your keyword strategy – consider the words, phrases that people are likely to use when speaking instead of typing.
  • Optimise ad groups with long-tail keywords – what words or phrases would your target audience ask to find solutions or information relating to your products?
  • Focus on Local – voice search is predominantly used to find local businesses for now. When optimising for voice search, we must think local long-tail location keywords to draw in users.
  • Extensions – for voice search it’s best to optimise PPC ads with extensions. Pivotal is call extensions so that ads surfaced from a voice search can quickly have the information to contact the business.
  • Targeting – website should be mobile friendly, as most people using voice search are using mobiles to click on links for voice searches. Targeting only mobile devices could improve engagement & CTR.

Durable Audience Solutions

With new regulatory changes coming into play in 2024, being privacy-ready will give businesses a competitive advantage. That’s why it’s more important than ever to update your marketing strategy to meet your customers’ privacy expectations. Google have offered up a range of durable audience solutions to help you address industry trends and capitalise on opportunities in a shifting marketing landscape.

Google durable audience solutions are:

  • First-party audience data (GA4 Audiences, Customer Match etc.)
  • Google Audiences (Demographics, In-Market, Affinity etc.)
  • AI-powered audience solutions (Optimized Targeting, Audience Expansion, Lifecycle Optimization).

Audiences are a critical signal that enriches Google AI and improves advertiser’s outcomes.

Your knowledge of your customers and your business, including high quality first-party data, are key factors in guiding Google AI to success and improving your cross-channel bid strategy.