Three Ways to Use In-Market Audiences for Search Campaigns
As search marketers continue to push for better ways to reach their customers, ad platforms have been on the hook to meet this demand by regularly rolling out new targeting features to diversify their offerings. In turn, marketers have begun to shift their paid search campaigns from 100% reliance on keyword targeting to more nuanced combinations of keywords, intents, and audiences. Google has consistently led this charge by adapting many of their long-standing display features to the Search Network.
One such example is In-Market audience segments, which have been a feature of Google’s Display Network targeting since 2013, but was more recently extended to the Search Network. As the name suggests, In-Market audiences target searchers that Google identifies as being in the market for a particular product or service based on recent browser history and search query intent. These audiences cover a wide range of verticals, with the ability to drill down into more specific sub categories, that advertisers would historically apply to their display campaigns.
Now that In-Market audiences can be applied to search campaigns, much like Remarketing and Similar audiences, there are some concrete strategies advertisers can use to gain learnings and improve campaign performance. A few favorites of the OpenMoves team include:
1. Apply on Observation Mode
Let’s say you’re managing an account for a local landscaping company looking to increase leads for their design service. Your search campaign is likely to be filled with purchase intent keywords such as “landscape designer cost”, “best landscaping company”, “landscape designer near me”, etc. to deliver qualified traffic to their site. If you apply the In-Market audience “Landscape Design” to your campaign in Observation Mode you can begin to see (i.e. observe) how searchers who trigger your ads AND fall into this audience perform relative to those that don’t.
It’s very likely that the combination of a relevant search query along with a match to Google’s In-Market criteria will prove these searchers to be of higher value. Then, like you would with any valuable data segment, you can apply an increased bid modifier to this audience for maximum exposure.
2. Apply on Targeting Mode by segmenting existing keywords
Now let’s say that, after a period of time, data has proven this audience to be significantly more valuable. You’d like to give this audience as much exposure as possible, but are working with a limited budget. This presents an opportunity to segment your campaign using the Targeting setting. If you create an exact replica of your existing campaign, you can then have one that exclusively targets this audience and a lower priority campaign that only uses keyword targeting.
Then apply a larger budget to the campaign exclusively targeting this audience and allocate whatever is left over to fund your other campaign. You can even actively exclude this audience from your lower priority campaign to ensure the cleanest distribution of traffic.
3. Apply on Targeting Mode to test new keywords
If you end up in the position where you’d like to grow your campaign, In-Market audiences can be a great solution for incremental budget.
Think back to the original keyword list for your landscaping campaign – “landscape designer cost”, “best landscaping company”, “landscape designer near me”, etc. You know there are more landscaping keywords that you can build out, but are hesitant to get too ambiguous for fear of generating lower quality clicks. However, knowing that your In-Market audience provides an extra layer of quality control, you now have a stronger rational to expand your keyword portfolio.
In this case, you may consider developing a new campaign for upper funnel keywords such as “landscaping”, “landscaping ideas”, “beautiful landscapes”, etc. while targeting the same In-Market audience “Landscape Design”. With this strategy, you can attract searchers who are less prone to specificity in their queries, but may be just as qualified as those who do search with purchase intent.
Ultimately, you’ll need to test different combinations of In-Market audience targeting to see which mix works best for your search campaigns. Different campaigns may yield different results, but patterns will often emerge to help you continue to fine-tune your strategy.
Need help with PPC for your business? Contact us a consultation and to learn how we can help you!