Company

You may have seen news recently about a security flaw in a common software library called Log4j that could affect large portions of the internet. Also known as CVE-2021-44228, the vulnerability is specific to Java-based services. A successful attack could potentially allow an attacker to access host data and resources.

At Marin Software, the privacy and integrity of our customers' data is a top priority. Marin has evaluated its primary external services and preliminarily determined there is limited vulnerability, if any, to the log4j issue.

  • MarinOne, Marin Enterprise, Marin Social, Marin Go, and Marin Labs: Internet-facing services are non-Java.
  • BI Connect: all components have been upgraded to remediate against the vulnerability.
  • Marin Tracker: runs “outside the firewall” and communicates via asynchronous file transfer using a non-Java mechanism.
  • Marin hardware, OS, and network infrastructure: confirmed cleared of vulnerability per vendor statements.

Because of the evolving nature of the threat and the high volume of potential attacks at this time, Marin will continue to investigate these services as well as secondary / internal services. For publisher remediation status, customers should contact those publishers directly.

Update published January 5, 2021:

Marin has completed its assessment of the Marin application.  We believe that the Marin application host systems and related data are currently protected from the vulnerability noted above and related Log4j vulnerabilities.  We believe the Marin application host systems and related data were not compromised.  Our conclusions are based on many factors, including but not limited to a lack of Java-based external services, tightly circumscribed host settings and network privileges, and communications with third party vendors.  As part of a defense-in-depth approach to system security, Marin has also taken several steps recently that have been designed to create additional protections against this class of vulnerabilities.

Marin will continue to evaluate any vulnerabilities as they come up, and we will work to comply with industry best-practices in application, host, and network security.


This week, we disclosed that Google and Marin have entered into a new 3-year revenue share agreement. The agreement supports innovation and choice in paid search management and optimization. Google has agreed to make revenue payments to Marin based on the total paid search spend Marin’s customers are managing on our platform across Google and other search publishers.

Independent solution providers like Marin improve the ecosystem and help advertisers succeed. With the revenue share payments, Marin will further develop and enhance our MarinOne platform to serve the needs of the world’s leading search advertisers.

Our goal with MarinOne is to complement the tools built by the publishers, expanding advertising abilities to analyze, automate and optimize their digital marketing campaigns. As an independent third-party, we help advertisers leverage their data and make better budget allocation decisions and deliver better results across all publishers.

This agreement provides an additional source of revenue and will support Marin’s investments in innovation and delivering value to our customers.

Digital marketing is an ever changing industry and we are in a great position to help our customers deliver more growth and maximize the return on their digital marketing investments.

Onward,

Chris Lien

Marin Software has been recognized as an Apple Search Ads Partner specializing in campaign management. Apple Search Ads Partners are leading companies skilled in helping Apple Search Ads Advanced customers manage, measure and optimize their campaigns. Marin has been helping digital advertisers get the best performance from their advertising campaigns for almost 15 years and has helped manage and optimize over $40 billion in advertising spend.



Our self-serve MarinOne platform has been helping advertisers manage and optimize their Apple Search Ads campaigns since 2019. In the first quarter of 2020, our client’s Apple Search Ads spend grew by 200% year-over-year, a sign of their success with this advertising channel.



MarinOne Dashboard



As an Apple Search Ads Partner, Marin will work closely with Apple Search Ads to provide our joint customers with the highest level of support and expertise, including sharing best practices and implementing the latest Apple Search Ads features.



“Apps represent an increasingly important part of the marketing mix for many advertisers, not just for app and game developers,” said Chris Lien, Marin’s Chairman and CEO. “Our customers have seen fantastic results using MarinOne to optimize their Apple Search Ads while coordinating with their other search, social and eCommerce campaigns.”



Paddy Power, one of the most popular betting brands in the UK and Ireland, tested Marin Bidding on their Apple Search Ads campaigns to see if they could improve efficiency and lower CPCs and CPAs while maintaining steady app installs and revenue.



“We tested Marin Bidding on Apple Search Ads and our CPAs came down by 30%. Our CPCs became more manageable and we were able to free up budget to re-invest in additional growth opportunities. We’re thrilled with the results, and we plan to keep using MarinOne Bidding for Apple Search Ads on other lines of business in the future,” noted Anthony Elders, Head of Search, Paddy Power Betfair.



The powerful MarinOne platform integrates with leading mobile measurement solutions including Kochava, Appsflyer, Branch and Singular, as well as traditional measurement solutions like Google Analytics  to give advertisers a complete view of their return on investment.



Apple Search Ads




Our optimization tools help identify optimal levels of spend while MarinOne bidding delivers the best possible performance. MarinOne’s Insight module automatically identifies opportunities in your account with estimates of potential value and easy implementation.




Automation tools make it easier and more efficient to manage Apple Search Ads campaigns. Advertisers can manage their Apple Search Ads alongside their Google Universal App Campaigns, making it easy to share insights across publishers.



Click here to get started with Apple Search Ads today.


Lucie Ataya has been working at Marin for 8 years. She’s now a product manager working directly with Wister Walcott, Co-founder and EVP, Product and Technology

Tell us a bit more about your experience as a woman in tech at Marin


I joined Marin 8 years ago, after a couple of years being the very first hire in a Somerset-based tech startup. I started at the bottom, making my way into different roles, both as an individual contributor and in leadership positions. I've had a lot of opportunities to learn and explore different avenues, which has made for an exciting journey.

I had to face prejudice early on in my career, based on my age and gender, and it made for some challenging situations. Finding mentors, from both genders and from different backgrounds early on, who were able to guide me and help me grow was invaluable.

How does it feel to be the only woman in the room


I've found there can be a lot of unspoken and unconscious bias, both from men and women and the only way to get through it is to stand up for yourself - no one else is going to volunteer to do it for you.

There's a lot of self-help and self-improvement content out there, which in my opinion boils down to very little: it's all about building the confidence and the belief that you know what you're talking about and are worthy of being heard.

Getting that level of confidence, I think, comes to a large extent with being prepared and doing your due diligence. Make sure you do your homework.

It also comes with being mindful of the language you use - both what you say and your body language. Everything you say, the way in which you say it and the signals your body sends whilst you're saying it can either strengthen or undermine your message - not just for the people you're addressing, but for yourself too.

Advice for the future generation


There is a lot I've learnt in my decade in the tech sphere. If I had to pick the top few, my two cents would be:

If it doesn't seem right, it probably isn't - I know a lot of us try to rationalise situations that don't feel right by convincing ourselves we're 'probably overreacting'. We have to learn to recognise situations for what they truly are (nothing more, nothing less) and acknowledge the ones that carry prejudice. We need to start trusting our own instincts rather than try to tone it down for fear of what people might think. Only then can we start doing something about it.

If you don't ask, you don't get - Don't be scared of putting ideas forward, making suggestions and asking for guidance. The worst thing that will happen is people will say 'no'.

This is also valid for your own personal growth and career evolution. You're the best person to be looking after your own interests, no one else will ever be as vested as you are in making sure you succeed.

Be proactive in creating change - Don't wait for someone else to do the things you think will benefit you, your team or the company as a whole. If you can spot a gap or identify room for improvement, be the one to lead the way to make it happen.



Marie Boivent started as a customer engagement manager at Marin Software 11 years ago. She's now VP Revenue and managing a team of 50 people across the world.
Tell us a bit more about your experience as a woman in tech at Marin

I don't see myself as a "woman" in tech, I just happened to be a woman in tech. Before joining Marin I worked for an agency who were developing their own tech. I loved being part of a process where your feedback could directly impact the product. I applied for a job at Marin hoping to experience this again, which I did. I see the tech world being well suited for curious individuals who don't like settling into a routine and who expect to solve conflicting challenges day by day. The digital marketing industry is always evolving, new solutions coming into the market every couple of years mean that there's a lot you have to learn on the job no matter what your background is. I was just lucky to discover this world early in my career and to be part of companies that trusted me with new challenges and that gave me opportunities to continue learning, developing and growing.



How does it feel to be the only woman in the room?


Funnily enough, I never paid attention to it until I became the mum of 2 girls. I now feel a level of responsibility to change the status quo and lead by example. Becoming a parent can make you more disciplined and more efficient in your job.


Whether I'm the only woman in the room or not, I always approach meetings in the same way:



  • I make sure I'm prepared,
  • I focus more on the value I can bring to the meeting
  • I focus on the content I need to deliver.


If anything I see it more as an opportunity to stand out than something to be nervous about.



Advice for the future generation



Know your worth, and don't be shy to remind people about it.

Identify what you excel at and what you love doing and build upon it. There's a lot of material out there that can help you with it (The Art of Strengths Coaching by Mike Pegg or the self help book So Good They Can't Ignore You by Cal Newport have been eye opening for me).

Don't worry about what others think of you, worry about where you want to go and what kind of person you want to be.

Be proud of who you are, if being you allows you to stand out more, embrace it. I've always hated talks or webinars that tell you how to do things like a man. Being soft spoken doesn't mean that you cannot make yourself and your ideas heard.

We need more women in leadership roles to inspire other women to aspire to leadership roles. Be these women!

The search for better performance never stops. To help our customers get the most out their digital marketing dollar we have upgraded our optimization tools. MarinOne Bidding is our newest bidding solution that delivers peak performance, improved accuracy, faster bid calculations and increased scale.

Customers upgrading to MarinOne bidding from the previous version saw a 10-20% performance improvement and bidding times reduced by up to 95%.

MarinOne bidding automatically incorporates over 75+ signals for incredible responsiveness and accuracy across audiences, devices, geos and more. MarinOne Bidding is simple to set up but flexible enough to meet the needs of your business.  It is especially well suited for advertisers with third-party revenue tracking and longer sales cycles.


Accuracy, Speed and Scale


No need to choose, with MarinOne bidding you get all three:

  • Faster Run Times: The bid calculation job for large clients can be up to 90% faster than Marin search.
  • Increased Scale: MarinOne bidding can effortlessly handle accounts with 10M keywords.
  • Improved Accuracy: Dynamic Clustering algorithms improves predictions on lower-volume terms by strategically sharing across similar keywords via a decision tree clustering technique. The result: an average 28% lift in performance vs. Marin Search.
  • More Reactive: Flexible lookback periods efficiently use the right amount of historical data to improve reactions to changing market conditions.
  • Powerful Forecasts: In MarinOne’s Optimization page, users can forecast time into the future and explore trade-offs between volume and efficiency for each bid strategy.
  • Better Control: Advertisers can specify separate targets by device and MarinOne bidding will optimize based on device-specific performance.
  • Better Guardrails: In addition to max Users can set either a Top, Absolute Top, or Search Impression Share Cap.
  • Automation of Bidding Target Changes: Scheduled boosts simplify management of changes in bidding targets and can be set globally or segmented by device and publisher, MarinOne bidding can automatically exclude data from data from boosted sale periods. bidding.


Getting Started


Our existing customers using bidding are being upgraded to MarinOne bidding. If you are a Marin Customer looking to get started with bidding, please connect with your account manager.

If you are interested in learning more about MarinOne bidding getting started with Marin, click here to schedule a conversation.

We’ve added nine new bidding and setup Insights to help advertisers get the most out of digital marketing campaigns and provide them with the tools needed to quickly implement those recommendations.

Here are the new recommendations:

  • Enhanced CPC Identifies Google campaigns using Marin Bidding or Manual Bidding without Enhanced CPC and allows you to easily enable the Enhanced CPC setting
  • Bid Caps: Identifies keywords, ad groups, product groups, and placements performing above the bid strategy efficiency goal whose bids are limited by the Bid Cap setting. Users can then disable or raise the Bid Cap setting unless there is a specific business case to maintain a maximum bid
  • Bid Floors Identifies keywords, ad groups, product groups, and placements performing below the bid strategy efficiency goal whose bids are artificially raised using the Bid Floor setting. Users can disable the Bid Floor unless there is a specific business case to maintain a minimum bid
  • Keyword Bid Overrides Identifies keywords on Bid Override that are in active Bid Strategies. Users can disable these Bid Overrides unless there is a specific business case for manual bid optimization
  • Bidding Reactivity Identifies Marin Bidding Strategies that are not using the Limit Bid Changes under X% setting. Users can enable the Limit Bid Change setting and set it to 25% for affected folders.
  • Keyword Count Identifies ad groups with more than 100 active keywords. Advertisers should segment keywords into multiple ad groups to improve keyword/ad relevancy
  • Ad Count Identifies ad groups with less than 3 active ads. The publishers recommend maintaining at least 3 active ads in each ad group.
  • Invalid Credentials Identifies publisher accounts that require a password update in Marin.
  • Sync Errors Identifies campaigns that have fallen out of sync with Marin.


All Insights are available under the top-level Insights tab, next to your Home tab. For more details about Marin’s Automated Insights check out our original launch announcement.

2020 was likely the most unusual year of all of our lives, so I want to reflect on the past few months and then look forward to what we all expect to be better days in 2021.

The start of 2020 seems so distant. Marin first became aware of COVID from our team members in our Shanghai office early in 2020. At that time, it looked like a localized issue that would impact parts of China. I thought of SARs and MERS but didn’t think much of what might be to come. We quickly moved to enable our team members to work from home and supported them as they adjusted to public health restrictions.

From mid-March 2020 to now, Marin has operated on a fully remote basis with a focus on the safety and well being of our team members. Our team rallied to support each other and our customers and partners under these unusual circumstances. We learned that despite missing daily in-person social interactions our investments in technology and culture have enabled us to operate at a high level from home. I am proud of our efforts to help our customers work through the impact of COVID on their businesses.

On top of the pandemic, the United States and then the rest of the world also experienced a massive social change movement in the aftermath of the death of George Floyd. Marin is looking to play our part in moving society to greater racial justice with our investments in various Black Lives Matter initiatives, which include our providing pro bono software and services to Black-owned businesses as well as supporting a mentorship program.

Even with the challenges of 2020, Marin’s team continued to advance our products to deliver greater performance and time savings for our customers, the world’s leading brands and their agencies. Our cross-channel platform MarinOne was awarded Paid Search Technology of the Year. We expanded our support for paid search, social, and e-commerce ads across the leading publishers and gave advertisers more ways to drive higher returns from their online advertising investments. You can see a summary of our 2020 product highlights here.

As we close out 2020, we are not out of the woods yet, but we are encouraged by the vaccine rollouts and anticipate better days in 2021.

We wish you and your family a happy and safe holiday season.

Onward!

Chris

What are Automated Insights?


There are a lot of moving parts to a digital marketing campaign. So many that it’s hard for even an experienced marketer to know what they need to do to get the best results from their campaign. Collecting data, recognizing the trends for optimization and other paid search strategy efforts often do not come as quickly as advertisers would like. That’s where we come in.

Marin has been providing account insight to our customers for over 10 years and now we are delivering these powerful, actionable recommendations directly in the MarinOne platform.

Insights are automatic, tailored recommendations that help advertisers get more out of digital marketing campaigns and provide them with the tools needed to quickly implement those recommendations.

Automated Insights in MarinOne are designed to

  • uncover opportunities to reduce wasteful spending
  • capitalize on additional volume in high-performing areas
  • Implement learnings from one channel to another


How Insights Work


Each Marin Insight is a customized, cross-channel recommendation designed to increase your campaign’ performance. Unlike recommendations from the publishers, Marin Insights look across channels to identify the most efficient areas of improvement or to highlight where a learning in one publisher can be implemented in another. We also focus on recommendations that align with your business goals, not just increasing spend.

To help you prioritize your work, Marin Insights are always presented with a corresponding performance change. With this information you can easily tell how your account may change as a result of implementing and insight. These performance forecasts are built by analysing recent performance of campaigns, ads, keywords, and products and benchmarking that against the overall account performance.



If your account is tracking revenue data the forecasts will be reflected in terms of predicted change in Revenue and Spend. If your account does not currently track revenue, the prediction is in terms of Conversions and Spend.

Insights are updated daily based on performance data over the most recent four weeks so you never have to worry about wading through old materials.

What Insights Help You Do


Each Marin Insight is presented along with a downloadable report that enables you to go from insight to action. Each report can be uploaded back into MarinOne to apply the recommendation. This workflow gives you flexibility and the ability to accept or reject each recommendation at the most granular level.

Examples of our Insights Include:

Ad Copy Optimization - Identifies the individual word with the most clicks across an ad group's keyword set and determines if that word is included in the highest-traffic creative.

Ad Optimization - Identifies underperforming ads using the KPI and statistical confidence in your A/B test settings.

Budget Capped Campaigns - Identifies high performing campaigns limited by their daily budget.

Keyword Expansion - Identifies non-exact match search terms performing at a lower cost-per-conversion than their parent campaign based on Google conversion tracking.

Keyword Match Type Expansion- Identifies high performing keywords that do not exist on more specific match types.

Keyword Publisher Expansion - Identifies top-performing keywords that are not being leveraged in Bing.

Negative Keyword Expansion - Identifies non-converting search terms based on Google conversion tracking with a statistically significant amount of clicks.

Single Keyword Ad Groups - Showcases which keywords have significant mobile performance to move each into their own ad group so it can get its own mobile bid.

Top Performing Products - Identifies shopping products performing above average within their product group and should be moved to a dedicated product group for additional control.

Key Benefits:


Highly Qualified Recommendations - Volume and performance criteria result in recommendations that are expected to provide meaningful impact to your bottom-line performance.

Performance Predictions - Incremental spend, conversion, and revenue estimates allow you to prioritize your time on recommendations that will have the most impact.

Platform-Ready Exports - Downloadable reports allow you to review Insights at the most granular level. We've also made it easy to implement the recommended changes using a bulk upload.

Click on the Insights tab in MarinOne to see your personalized recommendations today!

If you aren’t yet a Marin customer, reach out today to learn about everything Marin has to offer.

We recently wrote a blog on The Power of Web Queries, a type of scheduled report in MarinOne that is hosted on a URL and automatically updated with the most recent data. These are fully customizable reports, right down to the date range, activity type and even how often the data is refreshed.

The flexible nature of Web Queries means that marketers can automatically import their data directly into Microsoft Excel instead of having to manually download their data and then import into Excel, saving you endless hours of time spent generating reports manually. You can even create dashboards and templates in Excel, which get updated with the most recent data at the click of a button.

The New and Improved Web Query Reports


Since our earlier blog post, we’ve made further enhancements to our Web Query reporting capabilities to not only allow data to be automatically imported into Excel, but now into Google Sheets too.

You’re probably asking why use Google Sheets? What’s the benefit? Well, here’s a few…

  • Due to the cloud-based nature of Google Sheets, collaboration between multiple users makes a marketers workflow easier and faster
  • Built-in revision history
  • No need to constantly press “Save” due to Google Sheets’ auto-save functionality
  • Real-time chat window with colleagues
  • Access to your Google Sheet and data from any computer/device
  • Refreshing of data is automatic on an hourly cadence - no manual intervention needed
  • Ability to control access levels to the data, i.e. Read-Only, Edit or Comment access
  • Share the data easily with management and stakeholders
  • The data can also be synced into big data tools from Google Sheets for enhanced customization and reporting i.e. Google Data Studio
  • Pricing – Google Sheets is completely free to use


Setting Up Web Query Reports for Google Sheets


Once you’ve generated your Web Query report from MarinOne, copy the URL and open up a Google Sheet then follow the steps below.

Click into a cell and type =IMPORTHTML(

  • This function / formula imports data into a Google Sheet from a table within a HTML page such as Marin’s Web Query reports that are hosted on a URL


The syntax format is =IMPORTHTML("url", "query", index)

  • url – The URL of the page to be examined, including protocol (e.g. https://).
    This is where you paste the Web Query report URL that you generated in MarinOne

  • The URL must be enclosed in quotation marks


  • query – Either "table" or "list" can be used, depending on what type of structure contains the data
    For Marin’s Web Query reports, it will be the query "table", and make sure to also enclose it in quotation marks


  • index – The index, starting at 1, which identifies which table or list (as defined in the HTML source) should be returned
    For Marin’s Web Query reports, there are three tables to choose from (as shown in the image below)




Your formula should look like the example below. Make sure that each syntax is separated with a comma.

=importhtml("https://one.marinsoftware.com","table",3)

  • Once you hit enter, the data will be imported into the Google Sheet from the Web Query report
  • Once you have the data into the spreadsheet, you’ll need to set the criteria for the data to be refreshed;Click File >> Spreadsheet settings >> in the pop up, click Calculation >> change the recalculation to ‘On change and every hour’ >> click Save Settings




Google will now automatically refresh the data on an hourly cadence, so you can be sure that the most recent data is up-to-date - There’s no need to manually refresh like you have to in Excel

Why not give it a try and enhance your workflow with our latest update? And if you haven’t already, check our earlier blog on Web Query reports: The Power of Web Queries.



Who Are the Big Four?


The digital marketing landscape has become more and more consolidated into “The Big Four” publishers — Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google.

These entities have a vested interest in keeping each other at arm’s length and they will continue to silo their data from each other. This means if you are relying on publisher-owned tools (Like Facebook Ad Manager, or SA 360) for your digital marketing management and bidding optimization, you will not be able to connect the dots for activities that jump from one silo to another and will be missing conversion data as a result.

Marin is able to work with, and across, all technologies in the space. This allows us to create cutting-edge features — like our Marin + Amazon Attribution feature, in order to provide advertisers a consolidated view of their Search, Social, and eCommerce activities alongside conversion data — regardless of where that conversion occurs.

If you have any tracking challenges or want to discuss how Marin can ensure you are effectively reporting and optimizing to a complete ROI for all your digital marketing initiatives — don’t hesitate to reach out today to speak with a Marin Expert.







Marin Community,

Back in May, the tragic death of George Floyd was a wake up call for many individuals and companies who suddenly became conscious that we needed to do better. Marin Software was no exception: we need to do better, we need to do more.

We committed ourselves to listening, learning and supporting the organizations that are already doing great work and making a real difference. We looked at what other companies are doing in that field. We educated ourselves on this topic and seeked feedback from our employees.

As a result, we identified 10 initiatives that we will begin rolling out internally. A couple of examples include:

  • Celebrating the emancipation of those who had been enslaved in the US by making Juneteenth a company holiday for our US employees
  • Promoting diversity in the ad/tech industry with dedicated internship opportunities for BIPOC and Latinx college students


Our goal is to continue fostering a work environment that reflects the rich and diverse communities that we live in. We want to reiterate our commitment to creating a tolerant and welcoming workplace for all.

Given our industry and our wealth of expertise in digital marketing, we have also decided to offer pro bono digital marketing consulting services to BLM organizations or black-owned businesses. This is where we call out to you, our network, for help. Do you or anyone in your network know of an organization that would benefit from an extra pair of eyes when it comes to their digital marketing strategy? If so, please get in touch with us by emailing diversity-inclusion_blm@marinsoftware.com

Reporting is often a mundane and repetitive task. How much time do you spend on reporting? If that answer is too much, then keep on reading.

Every marketer's dream is to spend as little time on reporting as possible. The fact is that the less time you spend on reporting, the more time you have to spend on your marketing strategy, campaign optimization or perhaps testing something completely new.

One of the key benefits of using MarinOne is its web query functionality.

In a nutshell, web queries enable you to pull data from a website's URL straight into Microsoft Excel. The web query format creates an automated report that is posted to a static URL every time the report is processed.

Web query reports in MarinOne are designed to let users take advantage of their existing reports and have the application update the data on a daily, weekly or monthly basis, saving you literally hours a week by not having to pull reports manually.

As you can imagine, the possibilities with web queries are endless. Below we have outlined a few examples of the web query alerts and reports that we tend to recommend.

Performance-based alerts and reports:


  • Poor performing campaigns, groups, creatives or keywords
  • Strong performing campaigns, groups, creatives or keywords
  • High potential keywords and search queries
  • Campaign, group, keyword coverage change
  • Low CTR/conversion rate creatives, keywords
  • Performance by match type
  • KPIs that have been achieved by certain objects in a given timeframe
  • Mobile vs. desktop performance


QA-based alerts and reports:


  • Disapproved creatives
  • Missing Google Analytics parameters
  • Active groups with less than two creatives



Example: Cross channel Dashboard build by using Web Queries



Setting Up Web Query Reports


Now that you know when to use web queries, how can you create one?

If you are using Windows, you can follow the below steps:

  1. Create a recurring report in MarinOne and select Excel Web Query as the format
  2. You can then run your report and click save.
  3. Right-click on the URL for the Excel link and select Copy Shortcut.
  4. In Excel, open the workbook where you wish to import the data. From the Data menu, select From Web under Get External Data.
  5. Paste the link you copied into the address bar and your report will be loaded into the window.
  6. You can choose which section of your report to import by checking boxes placed next to each table in the report.
  7. Click Import and you will be asked to specify the location for the report and you will have to enter your Marin credentials when prompted. If you wish to have the data in the report, refresh automatically when the file is opened, click Properties and select the Refresh Data When Opening File option.
  8. Click OK and your data will be imported into the workbook at the location you specified. This data range will be refreshed whenever you select Refresh All from the Data menu (or automatically, if you choose that option). Simply link your existing output report to this data section and your report will be updated.


As mentioned, web queries will help you save time and hopefully enhance your day-to-day workflow. If there are any questions or you would like to know more, don't hesitate to contact us.

“How can I improve the quality of leads for my sales team?” It’s a question I hear in nearly every conversation with a lead-focused marketer. Coupled with measuring ROI and longer sales cycles, difficulty obtaining enough quality leads is an ongoing battle for marketers in the automotive, real estate, B2B, insurance, and finance industries.

The balancing act between lead volume, lead quality, and lead cost is the triad we’re all trying to solve for. Each business is unique and needs to figure out the optimal equilibrium for these crucial metrics while, at the same time, focusing on optimizing them.

Whether your business is predominantly focused on Volume, Quality or Cost, Marin Software is equipped with solutions that can increase the performance of your B2B Lead Gen activities in each of these areas, so that you can generate a higher ROI and reduce wasted time and financial cost

Solving for Long Sales Cycles & Multiple Touchpoints


A study by Miller Heiman Group, leveraging data stretching back to 2014, comments on how three-quarters of B2B sales to new customers take at least 4 months to close, with almost half taking seven months or more. This timeline of course varies on industry, product, price and on-boarding cost for the product or service; however, the sentiment is there: the challenges with a longer decision-making process are much higher.

As a marketer, you are likely familiar with a purchase funnel and the various touchpoints in a customer journey. The stages vary per business, but typically include awareness, interest, desire, and action. So whether it’s the initial Contact Us or White Paper Download, the single or many phone conversations for additional information, or the final purchase, it can be challenging for marketers to combine these touchpoints into a holistic strategy.

Marin’s Full Funnel Bidding addresses this challenge. Marin’s full funnel approach allows for a bespoke bid strategy to accommodate the latency and multiple touchpoints we often see in the purchase cycle. This allows advertisers to dynamically set more aggressive CPA targets for leads that have higher propensity to convert to a sale.

Marketers are tasked with optimizing to the volume of leads coming into the top of the funnel while also managing the revenue or value of the lead. With MarinOne’s Full Funnel Optimization, touchpoints can receive revenue credit no matter where in the funnel.

Analytics to Action


If your business is not already capturing a Lead Score, I highly encourage you to start leveraging this methodology. This means ranking leads in order to determine their sales-readiness. You score leads based on the interest they show in your business, their current place in the buying cycle, and their fit in regard to your business. Understanding the quality of your leads by working on your internal metrics is pivotal.

In addition to that, it’s often the case that some PPC keywords or certain social creatives will drive a higher quality lead. Advertisers should be capturing this level of granularity, and then passing it into their optimization engine to capitalize on incremental lift and performance.

For example, an enterprise-level SaaS business may be leveraging two keywords: “ERP Software,” and “ERP Enterprise Solutions.” In this instance, both keywords are upper-funnel, and in many ways very similar. However, let’s imagine the term “ERP Enterprise Solutions” drives a higher revenue value per subscription and a higher renewal rate, thus increasing its Lead Score. Advertisers should be capitalizing on this granularity by applying agile modifiers. In this example, we recommend applying a Bid Boost Modifier to increase the bid value by 10%.

The lead generation game is fluid. The campaign structure we take today may not be successful tomorrow. Thus we need to be agile and flexible with the ability to automate optimization modifiers on the fly.

Marin Software can layer bid modifiers across any data point or signals, including Lead Score.

Budget Allocation & Forecasting


As marketers, we may often be tasked with “driving more calls” or “generating more downloads for the whitepaper.” Our partners in Sales & Operations often don’t understand the intricacies of simply driving more of a certain touchpoint.

On top of optimization modifiers, we at Marin Software have developed Budget & Forecasting techniques to support you during these demands for shifts. They help you evaluate new optimization opportunities before testing them out in the real world, and help you invest more of your marketing spend into campaigns and channels with increased upside potential. No more over-allocating to the wrong channels or tactics that don't produce qualified results. This information is not only helpful to us as marketers, but can also support advertisers’ conversations with internal stakeholders.

Conclusion


Understanding how to improve lead quality for your PPC campaign isn’t always obvious. Yet, there are simple ways in which Marin Software can provide support:

  • Consulting on your internal Lead Scoring process and ingesting that into your Bid Calculations.
  • Evaluating your consumer journey and feeding any latency expectations into the algorithmic engine to ensure total efficiencies across channels.
  • Layering agile and bespoke modifiers across channels to optimize toward the areas of your campaigns that drive higher quality engagements.
  • Leveraging advanced forecasting and scenario-planning tools to help you respond quickly to changing market conditions.


Ready to take action on generating higher quality leads? Schedule a demo with one of our account representatives today!

In recent months, brands and retailers have had to adapt to a pandemic that no one saw coming, and one thing is for certain: engagement on sponsored content is increasing with more people at home and on social media. And while the pros of influencer marketing were prevalent to brands prior to COVID-19 (building trust and credibility, expanding your brand’s reach, etc), this new landscape requires both brands and influencers to adapt quickly to a market where priorities have shifted, consumers may be more sensitive, and actions may be more highly scrutinized.

Let’s take a look at how influencer marketing has evolved in recent years, what has changed during the COVID-19 crisis, and what brands can do now to stay impactful and relevant.

The Old and the New


In a 2019 benchmark report by Influencer Marketing Hub, 92% of consumers believed that influencer marketing was an effective form of marketing. Due in part to features like Checkout on Instagram, which allows consumers to select from various options such as size or color and proceed to payment without leaving Instagram, 83% of consumers surveyed claimed to purchase items that are advertised by influencers.

The influencer marketing platform market is also growing at incredible scale as brands and agencies look to foster deeper connections with consumers being “influenced.”. With over 300 new influencer marketing-focused platforms and agencies entering the market in 2019, brands can now easily discover potential influencers, develop relationships with influencers, and run campaigns.

And while Instagram continues to dominate influencer marketing, other digital platforms such as YouTube, Twitter, and LinkedIn increasingly play a pivotal role in extending a brand’s reach to engaged audiences.

Upon the introduction of COVID-19, the average screen time has increased and consumer habits have shifted, meaning that brands need to be vigilant about hitting all digital platforms more than ever. During this unprecedented event, trusted social media influencers continue to be a reliable source of information and an effective, authentic way to communicate with target audiences.



Here are some best practices for influencer marketing in the wake of COVID-19.

Best Practices


  • Understanding Data Trends: How have social mentions of your brand or category (i.e. skincare, cereal, workout clothes) changed? Make sure to keep track of your website traffic, likes, and consumer engagement with videos, etc. across all social platforms. This information can help determine your content strategy, so you can continue building strong relationships with your followers.
  • Adjusting the Distribution of Content: In the past two months, brands have transitioned to more video and live stream campaigns than pictures. With everyone working from home, brands should take advantage of the time people spend on their computers, TV’s and smart phones during the day with these more dynamic forms of content.
  • Staying Adaptable and Sensitive: The term “home-influencer” is making its mark, as brands adapt their products and messaging to fit the needs of the “stay-at-home” consumer. Consider hosting virtual events with your influencer of choice, and co-host a cooking class, a make-up tutorial, or a live Q&A. Many brands are also showing their solidarity by including messaging pertaining to “stay-at-home” orders, highlighting their commitment to employees, shipping policies, and customer experience. At the end of the day, you always want to ask yourself, “How can I continue helping our employees and customers?” and make sure that notion is conveyed in the co-marketing efforts with influencers.


A good example of a brand effectively using influencer marketing is Alo Yoga. With spin classes, weight rooms and other fitness venues closed temporarily, health & wellness brands are creating unique ways for people to continue their daily workout routines during COVID-19 to stay active at home. The team at Alo Yoga entered into a partnership with influencer Callie Gullickson, who helped promote a workout series called Sweat & Tone (hosted on Instagram Live). Not only did Callie help increase awareness of the brand with her extensive following, but Alo Yoga also increased customer engagement with highly intensive workouts, which resulted in more traffic to its website, and better brand recognition and loyalty in a highly competitive space.


What to Expect in 2020 and Beyond


With demands shifting, and as both brands and influencers need to output the right kind of content in order to strive in a post-COVID climate, we can expect a lot more storytelling, with influencers showing their followers how they adapt to life at home and how different brands play into their new routines. Live content will also continue to become more popular, as professionals from all industries look for safe ways to stay connected, from athletic trainers to business consultants to live performers. Not to mention the element of authenticity and humanity Instagram Live brings to users.

The most human brands will continue to come out on top, especially the ones that invest in building long-lasting connections with their customers and partake in cultural conversations that are considered important to their target demographic. And, as the near-term effects of the coronavirus outbreak continue to be felt across the global economy, businesses and creators in the influencer marketing industry will continue to adapt to the new “consumer state of mind” by developing strategies with active listening of their consumers’ needs and determining how their brand fits into people’s new routines under #socialdistancing.

Marin Community,

As we follow the news in the U.S. of the past week or so, we know this has been a very difficult time for Black people and all of us who care about racial equality and justice. The video of the murder of George Floyd by a group of Minnesota police officers is heartbreaking. It is the latest example of police brutality and systemic racism toward Black people in America.

We need to acknowledge that being Black in America is not yet the same as being White despite our ideals, best intentions, and the civil rights progress that has been made.

So, on behalf of Marin Software, I want to make clear that we stand against racism, racial injustice, and inequality, and we stand in solidarity with Black people everywhere.

I don’t pretend to have all of the answers on this difficult topic. We are asking ourselves: what can we do to be more of a part of the solution? I think we need to push ourselves to listen to Black voices and experiences to improve our understanding of the situation. I also would encourage each of us to take personal action to help make the world a more just, tolerant, and equitable place. I write these words based on events in America, but all of our team members worldwide can take them to heart. As Gandhi said, “If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change. ... We need not wait to see what others do.”

There are many organizations and initiatives doing great work and looking to make a real difference. For those looking for more information on this topic, two sites that you can visit are blacklivesmatter.com or naacpldf.org, and there is a helpful list of anti-racism resources here. You also might choose to engage in peaceful protest to show your support. Do what feels right for you, but I encourage you to do something.

As a company, Marin understands we must also do more. We commit to listening and learning. We commit to supporting the organizations that are already doing great work and looking to make a real difference. We will report back shortly to our employees, our customers, and our audience on our specific plans to do better.

Here’s to better days for America and our world,

Chris Lien

What is Amazon Attribution?


Amazon Attribution allows advertisers to measure the impact of non-Amazon search, social, display, email, and video media channels that drive searchers to buy your products on Amazon. Examples include third party search ads that lead directly to Amazon product pages, keywords with sitelinks, and social media advertising that directs users to purchase directly on Amazon.

Amazon Attribution reports contain publisher metrics such as impressions and clicks, as well as Amazon conversion metrics, such as detailed page views, add to carts, and purchases.

Why does Amazon Attribution matter?


If you are selling on Amazon, some of the customers you are reaching with other paid media may be converting on Amazon and this is almost certainly a blind spot when you are measuring the ROI of that media.



Amazon Attribution allows advertisers to better understand the impact of their paid search, social and eCommerce channels together. This reporting also provides a holistic view of how each marketing tactic contributes to a brand's shopping activity on Amazon.

How does Amazon Attribution work?


Amazon Attribution requires adding attribution tags to the click-through URL of your third party search ads (or other media to be tracked). Once you’ve implemented your attribution tags and your ads are being measured, Amazon Attribution is then able to report which campaigns, channels, ads, or keywords help to drive conversions for your brand on Amazon. Advertisers can decide where they place attribution tags to determine the level of their reporting output.

How should I use Amazon Attribution data?


Now that Amazon Attribution conversions are available for third party search and social ads, advertisers can use this reporting as part of their search and social workflow and optimization strategies.

In summary, Amazon Attribution provides an excellent tool for brands to understand how non-Amazon media is helping to drive sales for their brand on Amazon. It also allows advertisers to develop optimization and budgeting strategies across paid media channels that will ultimately increase efficacy and ROI. Want to learn more? Schedule a demo with one of our account representatives today!

For many of us, our shopping habits have been forced online. The stay-at-home orders, radical shifts in demand, undersupplied distribution channels, and difficulties with supply chains have disrupted our usual behaviors and required us to shop in new ways, and away from brick-and-mortar locations. .

Even before the dramatic changes from COVID-19, online shopping was overtaking a major part of retail. With the introduction of a global pandemic, home delivery has become a serious competitive advantage, and brands all over the world are searching for ways to enhance this game-changing strategy that will most likely continue – perhaps even flourish ­– long after this crisis is resolved.

While many marketers may see home delivery as purely operational, primarily for a company’s logistics and supply-chain teams, there are ways that advertising technology can help and contribute to a more ideal user experience for the end-customer.

Inventory Data & Integrating Business Intelligence


The most powerful weapon performance marketers have is their own data. For eCommerce advertisers, specifically tied to delivery and operation logistics, inventory is a pivotal data point that should be ingested into all aspects of digital programs. The inclusion of inventory data allows for the changes of creatives and bid adjustments to align with the availability of certain products.

This can support the quest for seamless home delivery through the ability to sunset campaigns for certain products that are running low in inventory and will sell organically. As consumers, we all know there is nothing more frustrating than clicking an ad only to realize the product is out of stock, or that delivery will take an additional few weeks to complete.

Marin Software is an open stack platform so we can take full advantage of all your available data sources —including your inventory, CRM, data warehouse, publisher data, and additional third-party signals. Marin’s SmartFeed product automatically activates or pauses your campaigns based on inventory levels. Furthermore, it also automatically compares your optimized feed with actual converted search terms, so that you can see missing words from the title and split test to improve performance.

Ad Creatives


Estimated delivery time is set to become a unique selling point and competitive advantage, particularly as smaller, independent retailers try to compete with Amazon Prime. A simple way to convey your delivery times is within your ad creatives. By structuring your programs with geography in mind, you can control the information within the ad creatives to indicate an estimated delivery time to the user.

Additionally, creatives should include delivery cost and/or any import duties a consumer may need to pay, in order to keep it entirely transparent with potential customers (this also helps with brand loyalty in the long run). If you can, include inventory too!

With Marin’s Dynamic Campaigns, you can automatically build keywords and creatives from a product feed and campaign template, so that all the pertinent information we just covered is seamlessly populated.

Optimization


As many advertisers shift their attention from acquisition to retention, securing any revenues they have, the user experience is becoming an increasingly important element for purchase consideration. For many businesses, it’s possible that certain products or geographies can’t render as competitive a delivery service. It’s important to use this logic in your optimization and budget allocation strategies across your digital activity.

In the areas you are more competitive, be aggressive with your bids and budget allocation--you’re a champion in this sphere. This can be done easily through applying modifier logic within your AdTech tool, or leveraging a partner like Marin Software, whose platform has built-in forecasting and budget allocation tools to do the work for you.

Communication


Once an order has been made, the fulfillment experience begins. As customers, we all like to know when our purchase will arrive, thus communicating fulfillment progress is pivotal. The integration of order fulfillment and email marketing technology is an important component in this process.

Offering services such as free tracking and text updates is a great way to keep customers up-to-date. As we focus on retention and customer experience, these regular updates demonstrate that your operation is a business that cares about more than a simple transaction.

One, perhaps extreme, example comes from the mainstream pizza delivery brands like Dominos, which have an order tracking app to keep customers informed of each stage of their pizza’s journey to delivery. Updating regularly through order-received, including the preparation, cooking quality control and out for delivery, the platform makes sure customers stay up-to-date on exactly when their meal will arrive. This, of course, is a level of detail that not all brands will need, or have the resources for, however it shows what can be achieved.

Conclusion


To summarize, ad tech can support your quest to champion online delivery by automating the ad creatives to dynamically update per the user’s specific criteria. Within your creatives, your customer should clearly be able to understand the delivery time, cost and terms straight off the bat. Furthermore, you should leverage first-party inventory and shipping data, combined with audience data, to give you the biggest advantage over your competitors.

Should you want to have a conversation on how Marin Software can help you champion your online delivery strategy, please don’t hesitate to contact a member of our account management team by scheduling a demo today!

Digital technology is available in its many forms to help you work faster. For marketing in particular, technology can improve the quality of your marketing output and ultimately help you generate more revenue and leads.

With that said, today’s unprecedented shift is creating the urgent need for brands and their partners to think outside the box and pivot quickly. Furthermore, it also surfaces a time to evaluate different tech stacks and see which tools can help increase their performance and efficiency.

Evaluating the right advertising technology for the job will come down to many factors, and reaching the best decision for your organization will take considerable time and effort that will likely involve you engaging in substantial research in order to get it right.

It’s important to ask yourself the right questions so you can narrow down your search. Think about questions such as:

  • What level of visibility or reporting does the product provide for forecasting versus actual results? Is it able to integrate with any of the advanced data visualization tools that I use on a day-to-day?
  • Does the vendor support multiple channels? Does the platform integrate with all major search engines and ad exchanges?
  • What support does the vendor provide for audience activation, and for which channels?
  • What level of integration does the solution have with our organization’s current technologies? How does it integrate with different data feeds or analytics solutions?
  • Does the platform enable dynamic delivery of personalized ads for the end-customer?
  • What level of support would they provide for any account escalations or questions?


Once you’ve answered these questions, and the answers are suitable to your company’s needs, it’s time to trial your options. Going back to the dawn of humankind, when it comes to problem solving, trial and error has always been one of the fundamental methods. Cavemen would test which weapon would kill Benny the mammoth most efficiently, while our old friend Julius Caesar would stage many different kinds of gladiator fights in order to see what the Roman people enjoyed most.

Full-service tools can get expensive quickly (even if you’re just trial-and-erroring), and most digital marketers are limited on budgets. Luckily, there are many instances in which you can get a free taste of what a product can offer (also known as the freemium model). There may be limited usage of the product, but you’ll likely get a solid understanding of its core value and if it addresses the needs of your business.

At Marin Software, we offer Marin Go, which helps you experience the power of MarinOne (our flagship product), without committing to a platform fee. You can then upgrade to MarinOne at any time.

With Marin Go you can:

  • Aggregate data from multiple channels into a single comprehensive dashboard. Marin Go can link up to accounts from 10+ publishers, including Google, Bing, Facebook, Apple Search Ads, LinkedIn, & Amazon. You can schedule reports to be collected, curated, and sent straight to your inbox in CSV format (or linking back to the platform).
  • Track budget pacing for the month and preview capabilities from our premium tool, MarinOne, including automated budget allocation and machine-learning bid optimization.
  • Ask questions of your performance using powerful, interactive reporting with change columns, flexible date ranges, saved views, and more.
  • Automate the preparation of polished executive-level and client-ready PDF reports.
  • Improve campaign performance with actionable suggestions and insights from our Account Performance Audits.
  • Automatically A/B test creatives.


If you are interested in trialing an enterprise-class reporting tool for free, and evaluating a tech stack that can incorporate data from all your different marketing channels, sign up now with Marin Go! We believe every advertiser should have the tools to break down publisher silos. Simply link in your accounts to start enjoying the benefits today.

Consumer behavior has been forced to immediately change as a result of COVID-19, and change on a massive scale. The transformation in consumer consumption is fluid, and we can expect it to continuously evolve over the coming weeks and months. For us marketing professionals, it poses the opportunity to shift and re-align to meet the needs of our ever-changing customers.

A seasoned advertiser is familiar with how to roll out a new digital strategy in “normal” times. That said, very few do so at the scale and the speed suddenly required by the new world we live in today.

As restrictions are lifted, and we begin to settle back to the hustle and bustle of our familiar routines, we will continue to see consumer behavior evolve. The fluidity in the unchartered waters we’re all sailing in will require flexibility, control, reactivity and transparency across all aspects of our digital programs, optimization and budget allocation in particular.

And while many advertisers will look to Smart Bidding to execute on their campaign optimization and budget allocation, it’s important to consider the restrictions that Google’s automated bidding solution presents--including the prerequisites that we’ve laid out above--flexibility and control, reactivity and transparency. Not to mention, budget pacing and scenario forecasting is unavailable with Smart Bidding, so advertisers are unable to evaluate new optimization opportunities before testing them out in the real world. See below on what we mean.

Flexibility & Control


One of the most widely-known and influential thinkers on management, Peter Drucker, once said, “Trying to predict the future is like trying to drive down a country road at night with no lights while looking out the back window.” This statement, now more than ever, is very true. Consumer behavior is changing by the day, and the search auction is a highly dynamic environment. Advertisers can benefit from flexibility.

Marin Software’s technology solves for this challenge through Device Adjustments, Exclusion of Date Ranges in Bidding Calculations, and Malleable & Bespoke Optimization Bidding Targets. And rather than only catering to Google, Marin Bidding can also be applied to an advertiser’s Bing, Amazon, Apple Search Ads, and LinkedIn campaigns. Our solution optimizes for you, the advertiser, and not the publisher, and works across many different channels.

Reactivity


As markets and industries shift, advertisers will need to react to sudden adjustments in the marketplace. For an e-commerce advertiser, this could be a sudden increase in a product category that you had not anticipated. For marketers in insurance, it could be reacting to the sudden change in profitability across a vertical. Such shifts require prompt and agile adjustments, and Smart Bidding is not equipped to handle this.

The MarinOne platform was designed with just this in mind. Within MarinOne, advertisers have the ability to layer custom modifiers in bulk, at scale to tailor any adjustment grand or slight. Couple this with the fact that Marin is open-stack and easily able to ingest any first-party or third-party business intelligence data to automate and streamline such adjustments to ensure you never miss a trick!

Transparency & Publisher Independence


For many years to come, we will be reflecting on the spring of 2020 as the time of perplexing changes in our lifestyle. The effects for many businesses will be great, and the financial leaders of these organizations will be mindful of every investment made as they return to growth. With this in mind, we expect a wider call for transparency and publisher-agnostic partnerships. A true evaluation of marketing investments will carry an even greater weight in understanding publisher performance.

The Marin Software ethos is to deliver the best performance for our advertisers, regardless of publisher. In doing this, our technology offers absolute transparency into all areas of optimization and budget allocation - an area we increase to invest in with exciting things to come this year. Without access to the complete bid history of any keyword or any individual auction, like that of Smart Bidding, there’s no way for an advertiser to unpack the selection criteria, optimization signals or decisioning systems for their campaigns.

What to do...


According to a recent McKinsey publication on how to navigate Digital Transformation in a Crisis, now is the time to act. Playing it safe now, understandable as it might feel to do so, is often the worst option.

As we emerge, and consumer behavior continues to evolve, agility will be forced upon us. As marketers, we’ll need to use everything in our power to control shifts, react and be flexible to our surroundings. Marin is here as a partner to equip advertisers with technology, insights and support to guide them through the journey ahead.

If you’re interested in learning more about the differences between Marin Bidding and Smart Bidding, check out our dedicated page.

Most search marketers are familiar with Google’s “Labels.” They’re a great visual reminder for keeping track of all sorts of things, such as your account’s keywords, ads, ad groups, and campaigns, so that you can quickly and easily filter and report on the data that is most important to you. Account organization is an extremely important element to a successful PPC campaign.

Marin Software’s version of Labels is called “Dimensions.” Similarly, advertisers can tag different objects for easy filtering, and then use those filters to monitor performance. They keep you organized by allowing you to easily aggregate data across an ad group, campaigns, keywords, or the entire account—faster and easier than exporting to Excel and running a pivot table.



However, there are a couple of unique ways in which Marin’s Dimensions can help make the life of a search marketer much easier, giving them a more enhanced functionality than Google’s Labels.

Dynamic Actions


There are a lot of unique factors that impact your performance as a business that are outside the auction–such as ratings, social media buzz, and new product launches. The machine-learning that is calculating your bids knows about these things so it can accurately predict changes in conversion rate and conversion value. In Marin’s world, these external factors are known as Dynamic Actions and can easily be leveraged with Dimensions to enhance your bid optimization via Marin Bidding.

It’s really up to your imagination, but here are some of the things our clients frequently do using Dimensions:

  • Load product stock information on a dimension, and use this as an additional lever for Marin Bidding by increasing bids for products where stock is high and lowering bids where stock is getting low.
  • Push/pull a particular vertical by specifying a boost on keywords that have a certain value on a dimension.


Smart Bidding (Google’s automated bidding solution) is unable to incorporate external data into its calculated bid, limiting the use of Labels.

Omnichannel Reporting


This is the most common use case of Dimensions--allowing detailed performance analysis across multiple channels for a search marketer to take action on and optimize. This can be done in the platform by filtering for different dimension values at various levels, but also in the Dimensions grid where you can see the aggregated performance for all objects with a particular value on a dimension. This use case of Dimensions is particularly powerful as it allows:

  • Cross-publisher reporting: Dimension values can be applied to all publisher accounts in Marin, so you can measure the effectiveness of each marketing channel.
  • Cross-channel reporting: Dimension values can be applied to all your search, social, and e-commerce campaigns, resulting in a unified performance view of all your digital marketing campaigns, side-by-side.


Google’s Labels are limited to the Google ecosystem, making it difficult to get a holistic view of your digital marketing investments.

Augmenting Your Cross-Channel Strategy


At Marin Software, we encourage our clients to leverage Dimensions to enhance their cross-channels marketing efforts through Automated Search Intent. This allows advertisers to create high-value user segments and reach people on another channel as they are making a purchase decision, ensuring the highest audience quality. How advertisers segment their campaigns/groups/keywords into intent buckets is only limited by the imagination, but many of our clients use (a mix of):

  • Brand vs. Non-Brand
  • Product Categories
  • Customer Lifetime Value


These dimension values are then passed on to Marin Social, where Facebook remarketing audiences are automatically created based on intent demonstrated through search engine activity. While users can manually create search intent audiences in Facebook, it works in silo from Google Ads, and there’s no way to automatically generate that list from a single workflow or platform (like that of Marin Software’s).

Auto-populating Dimensions


Convinced of the benefits, but you don’t like maintaining Dimensions? At Marin Software, we love automation! Based on your rules, we can set up automated dimensions and automatically make sure objects have the right dimension value set--a real time-saver! You can set rules on keyword text, campaign structure, or any performance metric, giving you flexible and powerful control over your reporting. And that way, you don’t have to worry about keywords, ad groups, or campaigns that you may have accidentally missed. They will automatically be populated.

This sort of automation is currently unavailable with Google’s Labels, and any keywords, ad groups, or campaigns missing a Label would need to be added to manually.

Actions by Dimensions


Actions by Dimensions are all about scale. It’s about doing what a search marketer often ends up doing, but in a much quicker way! Once you have tagged items in your account with Dimension values, you can use the Actions by Dimension feature to carry out a number of time-saving bulk operations. Imagine that a retailer has created a dimension named ‘Shoes’ that they have used to tag thousands of Groups. They can use the Actions by Dimensions feature to automatically:

  • Update the prices of all their ‘Jogging’ and ‘Running’ ads.
  • Pause/temporarily stop bidding on any Groups tagged 'Walking.'
  • Remove any prices previously set on keywords within Groups tagged 'Walking.'


While this feature is in parity with setting up automated rules for Google’s Labels, with Marin, you can Action on campaigns across multiple channels. So that when you have, say, a promotion that spans across your entire digital marketing portfolio, you can Action on all ads with the promo/offer corresponding to the sale, even on Facebook and Amazon.

Conclusion


To sum it up, Dimensions can greatly augment your search marketing campaigns, either by more granular reporting, simplifying workflows, or introducing advanced optimization possibilities, and this is accessible across all your marketing channels. With Marin being able to automatically set up dimensions for you, there’s never been a better moment to get started! Schedule a demo with one of our account representatives to learn more!

Last week, Google announced on its blog that moving forward “search results on the Google Shopping tab will consist primarily of free listings, helping merchants better connect with consumers, regardless of whether they advertise on Google.” This change is a major shift for Google as the company looks to expand its marketplace play as an alternative (dare we say, “competitor”) to Amazon’s dominance.



What do we expect to happen next:

More shoppers - COVID-19 and a surge in online shopping likely forced Google to make this move sooner than it was planning. As Amazon found itself struggling to keep up with order fulfillment, shoppers really took to exercising their shopping options across the internet, comparing to see who had what and how soon they were able to get it. As a marketer, now is the time to evaluate messaging, put your best foot forward, and meet new customers at the marketplace.

Impression share will be a key metric to focus on - Take a snapshot of where you were prior to the advent of free listings and keep this in mind as a benchmark or target to work toward. With a huge influx of new listings (and impression volume), impression shares for existing Shopping advertisers are most likely going to drop. Using impression share as an optimization goal is a wise option once you know what the adjusted range is.





Product feed optimization will become more meaningful - Now that Google Shopping is not “pay-to-play” only, there is a more important emphasis on having really high quality product content. With a growing field of competition, relevance is paramount. Listed below are a few of the more important must-do’s to get the most out of your feed:

  1. Building out strong, relevant product titles
  2. Ensuring your products are indexed into the most accurate categories
  3. Including high quality, clearly formatted product images
  4. Presenting current prices for products and promoting discounts


Learn More


It’s a unique time to be in online retail, and any business that advertises products on Google should evaluate its own response to this change. If you are confident that your business can satisfy fulfillment with an expansion to Google Shopping, see Google’s help center for more details on how to get started. Google’s Shopping Insights page can also be a useful resource to understand trends and benchmarking numbers. Maybe it makes sense to expand step-by-step by listing select products or categories and adding more over time. It really depends on your goals and priorities.

As a reminder, you can always subscribe to our blog to get more tips on how to stay ahead of the game with your advertising efforts.







Due to COVID-19, many businesses have been forced to suspend operations or drastically shift their models to endure. With government officials now talking about re-opening the economy, marketers are starting to think about what that “new normal” might look like and how it’s going to evolve in the weeks ahead.

What marketers should be doing now differs from what they should be doing when economic activity restarts. In this webinar, we’ll explore both sides - during and post-pandemic - to equip you with short-term practical tips to address your current challenges as well as best practices to consider when your business returns to growth.

Five Successful Strategies


In our webinar, we’ll cover on the how-to’s and benefits of each of the following advertising tactics:

  1. Dynamic product data updates and safeguards
  2. New to Brand optimization
  3. Inventory based bid adjustments
  4. Amazon Attribution
  5. Automated bidding and Dayparting


We’re excited to share with you the means and methods being used by some of the world’s largest brands to drive success in digital commerce.

Learn More


Sign up today to join us on Wednesday, May 20th, at 10am BST.

From spend monitoring to ad ranking, keeping tabs on your campaign performance across your different marketing channels can be a lot of work. And because optimization is the key to a successful campaign, it’s good to stay in the know. However, most of us are not on our computers all the time, so we need an easy and efficient way to stay on top of it all, and be notified of any major changes immediately.

With Marin’s Automated Alerts, you can stay in the know with automatic monitoring and notifications for all your marketing campaigns. These alerts bring changes directly to your inbox, so that you can be notified as soon as they happen. This means timelier analysis and action, so that your campaigns can continue running smoothly even while you're away.



Check out these 5 alerts that you can set up in Marin to stay productive, optimize strategy, and make the most out of each advertising dollar.

  1. Monitor CPA


This may feel pretty standard. But as a reminder, the cost of an acquisition or conversion is important to ensure not only that our ads are converting, but that they are doing so at a profitable rate. It is important to modify an alert like this one with an impressions count to be sure that an ad or campaign has reached enough users to properly determine an ideal CPA.

Example: Alert me if impressions are greater than 1000 and CPA is greater than X.


  1. Getting Close to Spend Cap


This can help you monitor your budget pacing, and view the rate at which your campaigns spend. Take action before your cap is hit so that you make adjustments to achieve your performance goals.

Example: Alert me if total spend > $950 (where spend cap = $1000).


  1. Impression Share is Dropping


If your strategy includes top or absolute top impression share, this alert is for you. By receiving a notification when an ad’s impression share drops below your target, you can take the appropriate action (improve ad ranking, evaluate keywords, expand budget) before falling too far behind.

Example: Alert me if the impression share drops by more than 10%


  1. Check Keywords


If you’re testing out some new keywords for your campaigns, use this alert to monitor their performance and iterate when necessary. This alert is great for keyword strategy

Example: Alert me if CTR is less than 3% for selected keywords.


  1. Ads Not Converting


Your ads may not be converting because of audience targeting, ad copy, or user-experience on your landing page, you want to be notified about ads that don’t lead consumers to the end goal of a purchase or sign-up. This helps you save money and optimize your campaign for success.

Example: Alert me if I’ve spent more than $1000 and conversion rate is less than 10%.

Once you’ve created these alerts, you can breathe a bit easier knowing that if something dramatically shifts in a campaign, you’ll be notified and can take action immediately. Automated alerts in Marin are customizable and can be set up in just a few minutes. Schedule time with an account representative today to learn more!

The travel and tourism sector is one of the world’s largest industries. The direct economic impact of the industry, including accommodation, transportation, entertainment and attractions, is approximated to be in the trillions of dollars.

Now more than ever, with the onslaught of COVID-19, marketers face a challenge like none before. As I put pen to paper in my new office - a small space in my downstairs hallway - I ask you to reflect on the potential opportunity the current landscape brings.

The Power of Data


The most powerful weapon a performance marketer has is their own data. Business Intelligence is the vaccine that can neutralize competitors, whilst achieving performance efficiencies and guiding accurate budget allocation across all marketing channels.

Airline advertisers should be looking inwards, to their data teams and analysts, leveraging route codes, profitability metrics, and flight details to automate the creation and optimization of search and social campaigns. Similarly, those marketing the supply of accommodation, should be leveraging internal catalogues, occupancy data, and room value to balance the supply / demand of bookings. Of course, this data offers little value in our current world, however, as we begin to see countries emerging from restrictions, and life returning to normal, using this data to power your performance channels will be pivotal.

The travel ecosystem is dictated by supply / demand. Marketers, all the more, need to integrate the supply/demand equilibrium to their performance programme to ensure efficiency and competitiveness.

Incorporate Customer Lifetime Value


As performance marketers, often our theoretical focus is on the acquisition of new customers. However, in reality, very few actually optimise and report on User Acquisition or LifeTime Value. Businesses understand that the value of a new customer extends far beyond the first transaction – and this is especially the case in the travel industry. Undoubtedly the most valuable customer is a loyal customer, and in most instances, the cost of acquiring a new customer will barely cover the initial investment associated with the purchase.



Travel brands are already well-aware that there are different types of buyer personas: business travelers, big spenders, bargain-hunters on a budget, global explorers, and casual family vacationers. To predict and optimize customer lifetime value, you’ll need a clear understanding of these personalities and how they interact with your site. From there, you can tweak your keywords, content, and value proposition--through relevant messaging and loyalty programs.

As marketers look to acquire more customers through the digital battlefield that is Google, Facebook, Apple Search etc. , we need to re-focus our attention not only to external references, but to the internal data we have available to us. This synergy—plus the insight and efficiency AdTech brings to advertising—wins more customers, revenue, and ROI.

Now Is The Time to Act


As travel advertisers facing the uncertainty of when tides will shift, I believe that now, more so than ever before, is the time to lean into all things data and technology. Advertisers and agency partners should be using these usual times, which in reality are a down-time for our teams, to double-down on technological and data powered integrations to ensure post-covid, travel advertisers are bouncing back better than before.

I implore those in travel to remain positive. As a collective, let’s reshape our perspective. just as a woodworker might carefully shave a piece of wood to reveal its inner grain, use this time to work on data-driven solutions that we often do not have the time to deploy.

It may be that you are solving for the above, ingesting profitability and supply demand into the optimisation and creation of campaigns, however I ask you to go deeper. Have you come up with a solution to track your conversions amidst Apple’s latest ITP update? Are you leveraging your Audience data to the best of your ability, and does it incorporate a consistent brand experience across all channels? Are you using first-party searches on your site to dictate expansion?

Marin as an AdTech partner is positioned to solve for all of this. If you would like to have a conversation around how you could better leverage your internal data, I and my wider team are available to speak with you. Please schedule a demo with one of our account representatives today.

Stay safe.

These are unprecedented times. Whether you have cut your advertising costs and are making tough budgeting decisions, or are gearing yourself for an unexpected increase in traffic and conversions, the marketing programs you need today are different from what you were running last month.

According to eMarketer, 38% of US Agency and Marketing Professional’s advertising efforts have been paused until later in the year.



The answer to the question “What should I be doing now?” is going to be different for every company. We want to help you make the right decisions by asking the right questions about your business, your marketing programs, and your customers.

We’ll be joined for this conversation by Jake Renter, Chief Operating Officer for Intertwine Interactive. Jake has seen a broad range of impact across the companies he helps manage and he’ll be sharing what he’s hearing from his customers.

Together we will help you answer the ten questions that will make sure you’re continuing to get the most out of your marketing investment, including topics like:

Is my messaging correct?

It’s a sensitive time for creatives, you might need to review and refresh your existing copy and revise anything that may be misconstrued as insensitive given the current climate.

Should I change my bidding strategy?

Paid search is very measurable, the first thing you need to look at is if your conversion rate has changed? We’ll elaborate on that during the webinar but as a start, one way to save yourself a lot of time and worry as long as circumstances continue to change day by day is leveraging tech for alerts. Demand and volume shifts for products can be dramatic, swinging up or down.

Should I be reducing my budgets and how should I be spending?

First, you may want to shift budgets into those products or services that have more relevance during this national emergency. Now might be a good time to do some incrementality testing and see the impact, especially at the top of the funnel.

Are there strategic projects I can be working on that will set me up for success?

If your mandate is to essentially “keep the lights on” now may present a good time to do the deep cleaning.



Sign up today to join us on Wednesday, April 15th, 2020 at 9am PST | 5pm BST

These are challenging times. Fortunately, as a group of experienced performance marketers, we have a set of tools that we can rely on when supply and demand greatly change. Whether it is Black Friday, National Pizza Day, or the CEO emailing you a screenshot of Google search results with your ad nowhere in sight, we can help you make quick adjustments.

COVID is certainly a unique event, with no clear timeline--so how do you adapt? The answer uses the same techniques as any other promotion or event. The following list of strategies and tasks will help update your account for the current climate. Get the fundamentals right and your search campaign should stay healthy.

Campaigns


  • Automated Alerts - Performance changes daily. Receive an email from Marin showing Campaigns/Groups/Keywords that have realized a significant change in spend and conversions across all of your channels Google, Bing, Amazon, Facebook.
  • Negative Keywords - New events can trigger new searches. Ensure to keep a close eye on Search Query Reports. Marin provides your Google and Bing search query results in the same view and allows you to add negatives to both publishers at the same time. Go to the Keyword Expansion tab in Marin to view and manage.
  • Day Parting - People’s schedules have changed, which may also impact online behavior. Review recent data and implement a day-parting strategy or revisit any pre-existing bid multipliers. Marin will make a recommendation with a click of a button.
  • Scheduled Actions - New announcements are made daily, often days before they go into effect. Stay tuned into events affecting the geo locations your campaigns are opted into. Schedule the Activation or Pausing of Campaigns/Groups/Creatives.
  • Sitelinks - The most efficient way to adjust your messaging or highlight a new offering is to add a new sitelink. These can quickly be added across campaigns.
  • Budgets - Because search patterns have been changing, you might be running into budget limits on parts of your accounts. Please keep an eye on campaigns maxing out their daily budgets and make adjustments where necessary.


Bidding


Marin bidding will consider the most recent data and calculate bids for each keyword based on the recent performance performance accordingly, allowing for quick responsiveness during this volatile climate. The following detail bid strategies and features we can leverage if anticipating significant changes in performance:

  • Targets - Marin bidding will automatically adjust for changing conversion rates, but if a conversion today is not worth the same as it was yesterday, you should also consider adjusting your targets to match the current environment.
  • Boost - Set a bid multiplier across the folders. This will allow you to quickly bid down or bid up KWs in the folder while keeping your original bid in place. When the event is over, simply remove the boost and bids will return to normal. Calculate the boost by calculating the difference between the historical conversion rate by the anticipated conversion rate ((Historical CVR - Anticipated CVR)/Historical CVR).
  • Folder Forecasting - You may have been asked to reduce spend for the month or next. Marin will recommend and implement performance targets based on budget. If reducing spend, use Marin's What-If feature to input your budget and Marin will make recommendations on how to change the target and hit your target spend. You can then select "Apply Recommendations" to quickly apply those targets. This can be found in the Optimization>Select "Forecasting" slider button area.
  • Dynamic Actions - Similar to boost, a unique bid multiplier can be applied to a Campaign/Group/KW by assigning values to a Dimension and applying a bidding rule. This can be useful for making targeted adjustments on specific parts of your account without having the change your folder structure.
  • Bid Override - If there are certain keywords to be managed manually, a keyword can be placed on bid override from the key tab while the remaining keywords in the campaign or group remain on automated bidding.


In addition to all of these strategies, Marin is happy to announce our “Expert Assist” offering, providing our customers with account audits that will provide 50+ insights and health checks. Whether your marketing program has cut budgets, adjusted your headcount, is in the middle of re-evaluating your strategy, or in some cases, is seeing new trends with your sales, please consider us an extension of your team. Our decades of digital marketing experience can help you navigate through this unprecedented time. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to us if you need further help!

We’ve recently decided to do an experiment to see whether an On-Demand webinar would attract more viewers than the typical approach of picking a date and broadcasting the webinar live.

Marin regularly hosts “live webinars” and we typically get thousands of participants, but only about half the viewers attend the live session, the rest view the webinar when we send out the recording. In a Netflix world, our hypothesis was that people would prefer to have the content right away and by offering immediate access to the webinar, we would get better results. So we decided to do a test.

During this tough time for everyone, we wanted to share our results as they might be helpful for you to engage with your audience by hosting webinars while most of us are working remotely and self-isolating. Now is probably the best time to create more digital content to reach out to your customers.

Evaluating Engagement Metrics

First and foremost with a test, you want to define how you measure success. We have two goals for webinars: 1) Generate new leads who might be interested in our digital marketing platform 2) Build our position as thought leaders in the market by presenting amazing content that delivers actionable suggestions for digital marketings.

With these two goals, the key metrics are registrants and attendees. Moving forwards, two more important metrics are “Audience Retention” and “Audience Engagement”. In order to really measure the success of our webinar, we firstly view how many people started watching our content and how many dropped off during the session. Finally, did the audience engage with us during the Q&A session?

The Test

The test methodology was straight forward, we split our audience randomly into two groups, half received a series of emails inviting the users to a live webinar approximately three weeks from the first email. The second group received the same emails, but the call to action was to view the webinar on demand at their convenience.







Which One Wins?

We pulled out the results and here is what we’ve got:







So more registrations, more attendees and deeper engagement with the content for the live approach. We were shocked, clearly our hypothesis was wrong and people are more attracted to a live event. While the test was done in a pre COVID-19 world, we would expect the results to hold up as people are looking for opportunities for social interaction to break up their solitary days at home.

Ready to learn more?

Whilst we are all at home in isolation, now is the perfect time to get free training on Digital Advertising content. Marin has a list of webinars with the best practices in Digital Advertising, starting from Outsmart Smart Bidding to Amazon Advertising to Developing a Successful Marketing Strategy with Instagram Stories. Get Started Now!

We are in uncharted waters. The changes from Covid-19 are already widespread and they will be long-lasting. Like many other companies, we at Marin have been dealing with working from home, canceled travel plans and figuring out distance learning. I just got off a conference call with 30 kindergarteners and I have to admit it was pretty amusing.



Most countries are significantly restricting social contact to avoid medical system overload. After the initial shock of these restrictions, things will adjust to the new normal, a dramatically accelerated version of the “Stay at Home Economy” trend.

The first priority needs to be the health and safety of our families, the elderly, and our communities at large. As people adjust to the new routines they've been forced into, they will look to fulfill even more of their needs online. And digital marketing will be on the front lines.

I think there are two questions that, as marketers, we should all be asking of our companies:

  • What can I do to help? Are there things that we can be doing that will make staying at home easier or better? Can I reduce friction for my customers in these challenging times?
  • How should I adjust my marketing programs? The impact of this is widespread but not even. Some industries will be hit hard, while others will benefit (see Zoom). As a digital marketer, what adjustments should I be making to my marketing programs?


What can I do to help?


  • Be Generous. Many companies with tools to help people work remotely are offering their services free during this time. Newspapers are lowering paywalls to make sure that people can stay informed. Zoom is offering its service free to public schools. Yogaworks is offering its online workout classes free until further notice (promo: ONLINE) to enable people to workout remotely.
  • Be Flexible. We are all going to be changing plans, canceling trips, adjusting schedules. Let’s make it easy for our customers to do the right thing and help to reduce the severity of this by reducing the friction of making these adjustments. Airlines are waiving most change and cancellation fees. Airbnb has followed suit, and so have Disneyland and Disney World Resorts. Vail Resorts is offering full refunds to international reservation-holders, and free rebooking to domestic reservation-holders. How can your company help?
  • Be Patient. Hourly workers are going to be especially hard hit as schools start to get canceled. Parents will need to stay home, meaning they can’t work (in many cases they can’t work anyway because their workplaces will be closed). Companies (and the US government) are starting to relax deadlines and late payment penalties to help people. Is this something that your company could do?


How will my industry be impacted?


You’re probably already seeing the impact in your volumes and conversion rates. You know your business better than we do but obviously travel/hospitality is already heavily impacted. Anything related to events will be similar. Companies offering products that make it easier to stay at home could benefit, including eCommerce, meal delivery, and streaming media. People are less likely to be making purchases that require longer consideration cycles at the moment, so we expect lower volumes and conversion rates in automotive and education. Sectors like financial services are less clear. With interest rates coming down and a recently-volatile stock market, expect a lot of activity in this sector.

How should I adjust my marketing programs?


  • Bidding: It’s key to remember that you should think about changes in volume and changes in conversion rate separately. If volumes are going down but your conversion rates aren’t changing, you might not need to adjust your bids. But if conversion rates are changing you’ll want to change your bids. If you are using an automated bidding system (Marin or Smart Bidding), your bids will automatically adjust; however, you might want to temporarily add a boost to account for a step-change in performance. On Marin, you can use excluded dates to focus the sampling period.
  • Budgets: For those advertisers seeing an increase in demand, make sure you aren’t hitting your budget caps and limiting the potential of your campaigns.
  • Messaging: Review your messaging and make sure it’s relevant in the current environment, especially if you have changed your services or policies. This impacts your website first and foremost, but your ads should match. Sitelinks can be a great way to communicate such changes.
  • Channel Impact: If you are a multichannel retailer, you may expect to see a shift from offline to online for conversions as consumers try to buy more online. If you sell through Amazon, your Prime support will be critical to “own the buy box” as more households will sign up for Prime. You can now send consumers directly to third-party retailers from ad sitelinks or headlines, which is important to test for effectiveness (Marin is working on an attribution tool with Amazon to connect Amazon purchases to ads on other publishers-- contact us for more info).


Be Thoughtful


Focus on how you can help and protect your community of co-employees and customers, not just shareholders. Review your plans and messaging within and outside your team to ensure that you are being responsible to the business, but not look like you are “taking advantage” of the situation. How would you feel reading about your marketing tactics on the front page?

Need more help?


At Marin, we want to help as much as we can. Our team of experts can support you during this time of uncertainty. As with many companies, we are encouraging employees to work from home to reduce the spread of the virus. We won’t be traveling or meeting in person, but our teams are fully equipped to support you remotely. If you need anything, please reach out to your account manager or click here and let us know what we can do.

Let’s all remember to stay safe and healthy, and to be kinder than necessary as we all try and figure how to adjust to and help in this new world.

To our valued customers and partners,



While everyone across the world continues to navigate the uncertainty of COVID-19, Marin Software is committed to supporting your business throughout the course of this pandemic and to providing continuity of service at all times. Our hearts go out to all those who have been impacted by the virus. To those who are sick, we wish you a full recovery. To those who work in emergency services and patient care, thank you for your service and we are thinking of you.



While marketing may not seem “top of mind” right now, our mission is to enable you to continue, or adjust, your marketing operations, help you respond to the unique demands that your business may be facing, and keep your initiatives moving forward as appropriate. For 14 years, Marin has helped marketers measure, manage, and optimize their online direct marketing to deliver on their business requirements -- to acquire new customers, get their message out to a key audience, or build awareness. At this time of great change for all businesses, you can count on Marin to support you.



Marin’s leadership team is meeting frequently to assess and adjust to the situation as it evolves. We take guidance from government and public health authorities in each location in which we operate. Our first priority is the welfare of our, and our customers’, employees.



  • Like many of you, Marin has temporarily moved to 100% web-based meetings, for both internal and customer meetings. We will continue to be available for regularly scheduled meetings, however we understand if you need to reschedule anything.
  • Marin has maintained and enhanced for years a business continuity plan which directs our technical and training investments. We expect the pandemic not to cause changes to our availability or uptime.
  • Marin has a globally distributed team, which is 100% enabled to work from home. This provides us operational resilience across time zones. You should expect a similar level of service from Marin as you have always received.



We are working tirelessly to help everyone stay safe while at the same time continuing to serve you. Please reach out to your local Marin team or support@marinsoftware.com with any questions, concerns, or if you need any additional help.



Sincerely,



Chris Lien, CEO


While we may live in a digital world, offline sales still drive the bulk of the consumer economy. To be successful in today’s hyper-saturated world of search, marketers must optimize not only for what happens online, but also for those highly valuable online to offline conversions.

Here are some tips on how to drive more high-quality calls and in-store visits that result in sales

  1. Create an ideal online-to-offline customer experience


You can use your customers’ behaviors and preferences to personalize their purchase journeys. Many retailers are starting to combine online and offline experiences, in that you can order a product and check if it’s available at a store near you for pickup. Similarly, online retailers are also toying with the idea of opening up physical stores at select locations for their customers who prefer to pick up the products themselves.

2. Incorporate social media

Social media is a great way to generate awareness about your company’s products or services. expand your marketing efforts across other channels, and attract new buyers. Sharing images, posts, promotions, and other giveaways are great ways to garner more interest. By responding to your customers’ concerns and asking for their opinions, you can enhance satisfaction while getting more traffic for your site, which further promotes in-store traffic for your brick-and-mortar business.

3. Localize your branded content

Location data gives advertisers the ability to tailor ads to respond to people’s unique experiences and behaviors—where they are and what’s happening in their world. Highly targeted audiences result in better ROI and more personalized ad experiences that make people feel like a business is speaking directly to them.

Location data isn’t just about delivering highly targeted ad experiences. It can also help retailers figure out how to better attribute revenue to the right marketing channel. After pushing an ad to a mobile device, advertisers can track whether a person actually visits a store by using location data that their mobile app provides.

Some tips on how to localize your branded content include:

  • Mention specific locations in metadata, headlines, and body content.
  • Write unique, targeted content that provides information relevant to each location.
  • Use images specific to locations.


4. Remember that mobile’s influence on offline sales continues to grow

In many cases, we find that while most consumers make purchases on desktop, most of the in-store visits come from people who first engaged from a mobile device. Search engines are making it easier for mobile users to quickly access the kind of information they’re typically looking for, from store locations and coupons to comparing prices and looking up product information. Because of this, it’s important to make both your website and content mobile-friendly.

Learn More

Marketers have many opportunities to drive more, higher quality offline leads from their search marketing campaigns. For more extensive guidance on Online-to-Offline conversions, along with real-world examples, download our guide, The Online-to-Offline Search Marketing Playbook.

Our aim is to help companies with both large and brick-and-mortar footprints understand:

  • How Search Marketing Influences Offline Sales
  • Tactics for Growing Online-to-Offline Conversions
  • Store Visit Tracking
  • The Benefits of Tracking Calls for Marketing Campaigns
  • Leveraging Phone Conversations to Gain Insight for Smarter Marketing
  • Effective Inbound Call Strategies


As a reminder, you can always subscribe to our blog to get tips on how to stay ahead of the game with your advertising efforts.

Automation should be a key part of any marketer's toolkit, reducing time spent on repetitive tasks and avoiding missed opportunities. Marin’s automation features will help free up your marketing team’s time from performing mundane work, and give them the capacity to brainstorm new ideas and boost productivity in other areas. These tools do a lot more than just making sure you don’t forget things—they make the existing workflows in Marin even more powerful.

For over a decade, we’ve been making it easier to manage the complexity that goes into digital marketing. Here, we highlight three ways our advertisers automate their efforts to simplify their work.

Keyword Resuscitation


Over time, any automated (or manual) bidding solution will bid down underperforming keywords. Generally this is a feature, not a bug—if they’re not converting profitably, you want to minimize wasted ad spend, even when those keywords have generated a decent number of clicks.

However, some of those keywords may be relevant to your organization and perform as your business evolves or competitive conditions change. If you shut off these “low-performance” keywords altogether, you may miss out on some conversion-ready traffic. This is especially true for keywords with low impression share.

With keyword resuscitation, Marin automatically increases your bids temporarily to ensure you’re not missing any click opportunities. If the keywords keep underperforming, Marin bids them back down.

Auto-populating Dimensions


If you find yourself working on Google Ads accounts with hundreds of active campaigns, keeping track of what’s happening where can be a pretty daunting task.



Marin’s Dimensions help keep advertisers organized, by allowing them to easily aggregate their data across an ad group, campaigns, keywords, or the entire account—faster and easier than exporting to Excel and running a pivot table. You can also use Dimensions for tagging your different objects for easy filtering, and then using those filters to monitor performance.

How are your brand campaigns performing against your non-brand campaigns? How are your experimental keywords performing? Do you have promotional ad copy you’re closely monitoring? Do you have different bidding rules you want to manage across your keywords? Dimensions help you tag and streamline all these views.

What about the keywords, ad groups, or campaigns you’ve missed? Manually having to set dimensions for a lot of ads or keywords requires a lot of time and resources.

Now you can auto-populate dimensions based on rules you specify. You can set rules on keyword text, campaign structure, or any performance metric, giving you flexible and powerful control over your reporting.

Automatically Pause Your Losing Ads


Always be testing. Your creatives shouldn’t have to have a long shelf life, and you should continually look to improve performance with new messaging ideas.

If you run multiple versions of a creative in a group, Marin can automatically pause the underperformers when there’s statistical significance so you can add a new challenger creative. Even better, with rules-based adjustments, you can replace the loser creatives with new ads, further automating your ad testing experience.

Get Creative


This was just a taste of three automations we frequently see with our customers. We don’t want to limit you just here, however. Marin’s platform is flexible, and it’s easy to get creative to meet your specific business needs.

Whether it’s using performance criteria to automate the movement of your ad groups into different bid strategies, auto-populating objects with missing data, or scheduling ads for special promotions or events, the custom parameters are entirely up to you. Just talk to your account representative and we can get the ball rolling.

Or, if you’re new to Marin and would like to start powering your ad campaigns with easy, time-saving automations, get in touch today.

Nautilus was working with an agency that used its own ad accounts to run Nautilus campaigns on Facebook. The agency “owned” the data and was reluctant to share any kind of historical performance.

Without any kind of first-party data to build valuable insights from and optimize towards, Nautilus was eager to partner with a team that could help them build an audience-aligned social marketing strategy. The goals:

  • Increase ROAS
  • Further validate the value of social
  • Gain full transparency into campaign metrics and performance


Marin’s Managed Services team introduced a three-part approach for better results:

  • Performance visibility: a reporting cadence and structure to regularly track campaign progress for more actionable insights
  • Less manual work, more strategy: a Mass Editor and DPA wizard that reduced time spent on manual campaign activities and combined manual elements of DPA creation into a single step
  • Hyper-targeted optimization: a full-funnel optimization strategy that reached the right customers at the right time, and created more personalized messaging and experiences


The results?

  • Exceeded the Nautilus ROAS KPI by 132% (US)
  • Exceeded the Nautilus ROAS KPI by 30% (Canada)
  • 388% increase from the initial ROAS goal


Learn more in our case study.

Youth Marketing Strategy is a marketing conference in London focused on 16 to 24 year olds, otherwise categorized as Gen Z. Marin has been a sponsor of this conference for several years now, and it’s designed as a touchpoint for advertisers and brands looking to connect with a younger audience.

gen z



So what generalizations can I spring on you after spending two days attending sessions and speaking at YMS? Quite a few....

Boning Up on Acronyms


For starters, I can now explain that FOMO, JOMO, and FOBO are considered real “things” for Gen Z inhabitants:

Definitions:

  • FOMO - fear of missing out
  • JOMO - joy of missing out
  • FOBO - fear of being offline


I took extra care with my notes to make sure I didn’t screw those definitions up, and I’m rock solid on the first two—but I did start to question whether FOBO was a fear of being online or offline. But I’m guessing that both work equally well.

The Evidence-Based Angle on Gen Z


Like any event that’s geared up to categorize a whole group of people based on their age, many of those present (vendors and speakers) will inevitably turn to survey data to find insight and make points that are worthy of a pithy slide or memorable visual. Turning to surveys is really the only way you can get away with sweeping generalizations about an entire group of people based on their age.

Skepticism aside, I did scribble down some interesting facts that were appended to Gen Z for the benefit of advertisers and companies selling products to people in that group. I’ve cherry-picked some compelling points to share from a UK study of Gen Z respondents, which was presented by Mark Walker, CRO at Attest:

  1. Gen Z consumers don’t buy from brands who reflect their stance on social issues as much as Millennials (at least yet—they’re under 24 so there’s plenty of time for convictions to deepen and causes to take root).
  2. Some advertisers can take solace from the finding that Gen Z finds personalization and ad targeting helpful rather than creepy, at least in comparison to older generations of consumers.
  3. On the other hand, advertisers shouldn’t celebrate just yet. Gen Z is more likely to pay for an ad-free experience rather than suffer ads in return for a free service.
  4. You won’t be surprised to hear that gaming consoles and streaming TV services are heavily over-indexed for Gen Z consumers in the UK.
  5. If you’re in the product review business (and who isn’t these days), rejoice! Gen Z is particularly sensitive to (and presumably swayed by) negative online reviews. This also applies to PR firms, since bad news or negative coverage about a particular brand can be very detrimental to sales among Gen Z buyers.


Advertising Overdrive/Overload


In addition to the nuggets of Gen Z consumer data, I did find an old marketing quote that still rings true in a clever Opinary presentation:

“Most people ignore advertising because advertising ignores most people” – Bob Levenson

Ed Harvey, Head of UK Brand Partnerships at Opinary, also made the point that we’ve reached near saturation point for advertising, and the average digital native from Gen Z see 4,000 to 10,000 ads per day. Not surprisingly, engagement rates are very low as a result of all that noise, just 0.09% on Facebook and 0.05% on Twitter.

Big Strides in Retail


I also listened to a lively discussion about innovation in retail where Shakeel Sanghera from Nike made some excellent points about how people will always want the social, connected experience of high-street shopping. It’s something you just can’t recreate in an online setting, but it is possible to merge online and offline in meaningful ways for consumers.

For example, why not pre-order your next pair of Air Jordans online and arrange an in-store visit to try them on (to make sure they’re in stock in your chosen size and color)?

It was also noted that people are less impetuous when online shopping—which means they spend less per visit than in-store. Online customers tend to know exactly what they want and go right to the Shopping tab in a search engine or on Amazon to find it. There’s less browsing behavior online, and people aren’t inspired to try on random items and keep their partner waiting in the changing room for hours.

gen z



The summary of this discussion ended on a sensible note—for retail and beyond, technology should remove barriers and friction for consumers and ultimately be helpful. It won’t replace the warmth and social aspect of shopping with family or friends, but it can save you from waiting hours in a store for the perfect shoes, only to be told that your size is out of stock.

The Incredible, Shrinking Patience


One final anecdote before leaving the world of Gen Z—Michelle Capp, Client Partner of Retail at Facebook, made the excellent point that technology has made us all very impatient, with Gen Z’s digital natives perhaps the most influenced.

Take hailing an Uber for example. If we see that a ride is going to take more than five minutes to arrive, our instinct is to cancel it and look for quicker alternatives. Remember that just a few short years ago, people would happily call a taxi the night before for a ride to the airport. How times have changed with technology advances, for Gen Z and all of us.

We called time on The Big Bang 2019 recently in London’s Science Museum, but plenty of good memories abound from the conference. The agenda included several big themes swirling around the digital advertising world, including artificial intelligence, feed management, big data, and the future of search.




Our opening session was a lively slam down debate about the impact of artificial intelligence on both marketing and our world at large. Charles Radclyffe claimed that AI is just “fancy maths plus data plus computational power,” whereas Sera Miller asked if AI can “help you unlock a strategy or help you get the creative solution to where it needs to be? If you don't ask those questions, AI will be like the emperor’s new clothes.”



https://youtu.be/eeN7KcHnVgc


Anita Caras from Verizon took the stage to talk about the strength of native advertising to drive more engaging user experiences. She described how difficult it is for a digital brand to survive, when some research shows that 75% of brands could disappear tomorrow and people wouldn't notice! That’s a long way from the brand love that advertisers crave.




https://youtu.be/eAdnqsC3lhA


Our shopping panel was a big hit (despite being interrupted by a museum fire alarm—thanks, kid!) with guest speakers from Facebook, Google, Bing, Marin, and Feedonomics. Panelists agreed that AI, feed management, and online/offline closed loop advertising are all important advances in advertising. But Michael Wicks, a shopping specialist at Google, seemed to capture the panel’s mood with his comment, “Retailers have got to remind themselves that the customer comes first and must be at the heart of everything we do.”



https://youtu.be/k2QYm2j59yQ

Ian Carrington, Google’s Managing Director of Performance Advertising Solutions, treated our audience to a fascinating keynote on the future of search advertising, which pivoted on a single fundamental concept—technology’s role in being helpful to users. “Understanding the customer journey and being aware of it is the first step in giving that customer what they want. All companies are finding their way through this. No one knows the answer yet. It's an exciting time.”



https://youtu.be/j7R847zNQfc

Wes MacLaggan, Marin’s SVP of Marketing, followed with an in-depth look at how data can provide advertisers with a huge competitive advantage, particularly when it’s used to leverage performance across multiple channels. Wes took the example of Google’s translation efforts, moving from rules-based to semantic, AI-driven translation techniques to get ever closer to the holy grail of natural language processing.



The conference ended with a truly inspiring talk by Doctor Sue Black, Professor of Computer Science at Durham University. Sue shared her riveting life story—starting as a single mother in her 20s with three young children to becoming a successful academic and public speaker. “Coming from very difficult circumstances, I never ever would have believed I’d become who I am. Education and technology have changed my life. It’s changed my family’s life. I love technology. If I can do it, so can you.”





Sue’s uplifting talk led us into a cocktail party in the Science Museum’s flight gallery (think champagne reception with large aircraft dangling overhead) followed by science-themed fun in the amazing Wonderlab space. We ended the day with tesla coil demonstrations, a gin lab, and controlled explosions—going out with a big bang indeed! Until next year...



Who doesn’t love visiting the science museum? On a Thursday! In February!

Marin Software and The Drum are bringing hundreds of digital advertisers together in London’s spectacular Science Museum on February 7th for The Big Bang event.

We’re aiming for breakthrough thought leadership, deep learning, and an opportunity to mingle with top brand marketers. It’s the hottest ticket in town (if we do say so ourselves) and the agenda will cover big themes from the impact of AI to the role of advertising in our lives.

This is most definitely not your grandma’s conference! We’ve invited the world’s largest search, social, and eCommerce publishers, as well as digital advertising entrepreneurs and innovators, to provide you with a glimpse of the future. Attendees will hear from performance marketing experts at all the major publishers.



We’ve put a ton of thought and effort into securing the right presenters and panelists with strong opinions and plenty to say about the future of digital advertising—check out a sampling of our speaker lineup below. It’s safe to say the agenda is packed and the marketing insights will be flowing.



The Big Bang event is sold-out, but we have a waitlist should any registrants be unable to attend on the day. Roll on, February 7th!

Perfect Audience is excited to announce our new integration with Shopify. Users of this leading eCommerce platform can now set up remarketing campaigns in a flash. With our one-click integration, we’ll import your Shopify product feed and automatically create a set of dynamic ads featuring your store’s products.

Advertise to your site visitors and cart bouncers so they return and buy after browsing your shop.

A Key Part of Your Digital Ad Strategy


Remarketing is a key component of just about every eCommerce retailer’s digital strategy. No matter how amazing your products are, a lot of your traffic will leave without converting. If they’re interested, give them a reason to return by showing them ads on tens of thousands of websites.

You’re in control of your creative, budget, campaign duration, and more.

Easy Setup


It’s free to sign up for Perfect Audience, a Shopify user can set up campaigns in minutes, and the only charge is the amount you spend on campaigns—an amount you set.

We’ll even give you a special one-time $250 credit to get started. Email success@perfectaudience.com by November 15, 2018 to take advantage of the special free trial credit. For more information:


Happy retargeting!

The post Perfect Audience and Shopify: One-Click Integration, $250 Free Credit appeared first on Perfect Audience Retargeting Blog.

This year’s holiday season will beat 2017 in every major online retail category—the duration of the season, the amount spent, and the number of shoppers who engage. We’ve put together a list of tips to boost your retargeting click-through rate and conversions during this critical quarter and holiday season. We’ll also highlight a bunch of new Perfect Audience features we’ve pushed out this year that can help you achieve your goals.

Timeline


Get an early start. Cyber Monday (November 26, 2018) is not the day to launch your holiday campaigns for the first time—there’s a lot of down time over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend and people spend some of it online. Have your Perfect Audience Site Tracking Tag installed, your audience segments defined, and your creatives ready to go at least 30 days in advance.

It’s a good idea to run some campaigns in October, too. There’s less competition for ad space than in November and December—you may attract early bird shoppers while planting seeds for future conversions.

Ad Sizes


There’s inventory to be won using some less popular but still useful ad sizes (970×250 headers for desktop, 300×250 and 320×100 for mobile web). This is in addition to the sizes we recommend for all web campaigns.

Mobile


Cross-device retargeting means Perfect Audience will follow your shoppers from desktop to mobile device. Are they browsing your store at work, then using their phone on the train home? That’s where we’ll get them. Desktop is still king in terms of revenue, but mobile’s share rises every year and can’t be ignored. Make sure you run mobile campaigns in addition to everything else you’re doing.

Budget Bump


In Q4, you’ll probably see a lift in site traffic. This means your audiences will grow and you can serve more impressions. Our team recommends a 25-50% weekly budget increase for the months of November to December. If your traffic usually goes up by a certain amount, increase the budget by that percentage.

retargeting



To change your weekly campaign budget in Perfect Audience, go to Manage -> Campaigns and Edit your campaign. In Step 3, change your budget amount. When you’re done, click Save at the bottom of the page.

Increase Your Bids


Just about every eCommerce store bumps up its advertising budget for Q4, making ad impressions harder to win.

With so many advertisers fighting for ad space, it’s not uncommon to see your CPM costs rise during this time of year. Prepare for the surge by increasing your CPM bids across your campaigns. Bidding higher will make your campaigns more competitive and will give you a better chance of serving more ads. We suggest increasing your CPM bid by 50-100% of the current average CPM cost for the campaign.

Go to Manage -> Campaigns and edit a campaign. In step 3, find Bid Type and change the setting to Manual Bidding. Then enter your CPM bid.

retargeting



You’ve also got CPC bidding options for Facebook campaigns in Perfect Audience.

Save when you’re finished editing your bidding.

Facebook Marketplace and Messenger


Perfect Audience supports ad placements in Facebook Marketplace and Messenger. These are two of Facebook’s newest placements, representing new avenues to reach Facebook users. It’s turned on by default if you run Facebook campaigns in Perfect Audience. Learn more and check it out.

Take Advantage of Instagram


Mobile shopping continues to rise, as does engagement with Instagram. Instagram is approaching the one billion user milestone, and 80% of those users follow at least one business. If it looks good on the ‘Gram, your customers are thinking about how it’ll look in their homes.

Take advantage of Perfect Audience’s Instagram placements within your Facebook campaigns.

Shopify Users: Enjoy One-click Integration


Perfect Audience now has an integration with Shopify that automatically imports your product feed and builds dynamic (that is, product-specific) ads for your catalog. Set your own budgets and keep total control over your campaigns. Detailed reporting ensures you have a clear picture of your return on ad spend. If you’re already a Perfect Audience and Shopify user, setup is quick and easy.

Dynamic Ads: Stuff Your Ads Like Stockings


It’s better to have more gifts under the tree, more cookies on your plate, and more products visible in one ad. If you’re an eCommerce retailer and you have a Google Merchant Center product feed, try our multi-product dynamic ads. If you’ve got a feed imported, it takes just a few seconds to build your ads. It’s like four impressions for the price of one.

Create Holiday-themed Ads and Landing Pages


Holiday ads and landing pages get attention, create urgency, and show you’re not running the exact same campaigns as the rest of the year. Send a happy holiday message, mention the buy deadline to ensure holiday delivery, and give them a reason to click your ads.

It takes just two quick steps:

  1. Create landing pages and content on your site for these holiday events, then create audiences that capture visitors of these pages. (Read up on audiences.)
  2. Run campaigns to serve your holiday ads to your holiday page visitors. If they’re coming to your site looking for holiday deals, they’re more likely to respond to holiday-themed ads.


Instapage put together an excellent summary of best practices for post-click optimization.

New Year’s Resolution


The season extends beyond December 31st—returns and gift cards mean another wave of shoppers arrives in January. You can lower your bids and budgets a little, but don’t turn all your ads off—there are still plenty of sales to be made.

Have a great holiday!

It’s a wrap for another year at SMX Advanced in Seattle, where thousands of digital advertisers huddle up to explore the latest paid search and SEO industry trends.

SMX was an exciting show for team Marin, not least because we unveiled our new platform, MarinOne, to the world on the conference opening day. The announcement garnered quite a bit of media coverage also—check out what Laurie Sullivan at MediaPost had to say about it.

Later that evening, we were thrilled to share our news with a room full of digital marketing leaders during our launch party at the Chihuly Garden and Glass Museum underneath Seattle’s iconic Space Needle.

smx



While it wasn’t possible to attend all the sessions due to the excitement and activities around MarinOne, I did manage to siphon off my top five takeaways from SMX this year:

  1. Purple, a Utah-based mattress startup, used story-based video to generate incredible demand throughout their funnel. Check out these video engagement stats, for example—Purple videos get 35,000 YouTube viewing hours and 17,500 Facebook viewing hours each day. That marketing team must be getting no sleep!
  2. YouTube’s TrueView In-Stream is “the most valuable impression on the web,” according to video advertising expert Cory Henke. TrueView is free for the first 30 seconds and gives ample opportunities for testing and validating new video creative.
  3. Brad Geddes gave an interesting session titled Humans Rule the Machines, which outlined the role of “imagination workers” in marketing who will add value on top of AI in terms of creativity, strategy, storytelling, and machine auditing.
  4. Amazon marches on. Mary Meeker’s latest Internet Trends Report shows that 49% of all product searches start on Amazon, and 28% of all eCommerce sales are processed by Amazon. To quote Bryan Garvin from Purple, “Ignore if you don’t like sales.” Duly noted, Bryan!
  5. Several sessions highlighted the value of Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) for publishers and eCommerce vendors. A recent Forrester study outlines the total economic impact of AMP as $211K in cost, six-month payback period, and a $1M return over three years.


As you can tell from my notes, there were many important digital advertising topics under discussion at the conference. It’s also an excellent opportunity to mingle with brands, agencies, and digital marketing experts in the great city of Seattle. Until next year!

We’re excited to share some big news today: We’ve launched our next-generation platform, MarinOne, which unites your search, social, and eCommerce advertising.

Now, you can maximize the results of your digital ad campaigns with a single view of the customer. By focusing on the customer and not the channel, MarinOne gives you a powerful new way to engage with people wherever they are, no matter which device they’re using or what channel they’re on—ultimately driving more customers and higher revenue.

Check out our video to learn more, and then request a demo today.

digital advertising

The Marin Marketing team stays busy not only striving to deliver compelling, educational, and relevant content—we also spend time following the most interesting industry news. In this weekly series, we list the stories that are grabbing our team’s attention.

1. Facebook’s Latest Transparency Move Is Showing You How Much Objectionable Content It Removes


Despite dramatic news headlines, Facebook is doing a good job of keeping offensive content off its platform. This Fast Company article covers Facebook’s efforts to keep its community safe.

Read the article

2. How Publishers Are Responding to GDPR


The GDPR goes into effect today. eMarketer spoke to Richard Reeves, managing director of the UK's Association of Online Publishers, to get his take on challenges that publishers face with the new privacy rules.

Read the article

3. Data Suggests Surprising Shift: Duopoly Not
All-Powerful


However slow the pace or slight the drop—what goes up must come down. eMarketer looks at companies that are growing faster than expected, and cutting in to Google’s and Facebook’s frenetic wedding dance.

Read the article

4. Shopper Marketing Undergoes A Digital Evolution


This is an exciting time for e-commerce. According to Gartner’s, marketers now spend $178 billion each year on in-store campaigns, and $55 billion of this could shift to online ads. Read more about the current retail opportunities and challenges.

Read the article

5. YouTube channels are seeing a lift in live
video viewership


And lastly, if you’re as ready to go with GDPR as we are, you might still be looking up last-minute resources to dot the i’s and cross the t’s. Here’s a handy Marketo resource. Also be sure to check out
our FAQ.

Read the article

As your Ally in Digital, Marin Software believes that securing and protecting sensitive and confidential customer data is central to everything we do. Over the past year, we have been working hard to refine internal processes and procedures to ensure GDPR compliance. We believe Marin is in compliance with GDPR. Below is a summary of additional questions you may have.

What is GDPR?

The General Data Protection Regulation (“GDPR”) is a new set of regulations that harmonize the data privacy laws across the European Union ("EU"). The GDPR sets forth a number of rules to protect personal data processing, personal data movement, and other individual rights and freedoms.

When does GDPR go into effect?

May 25, 2018.

Who does GDPR apply to?

GDPR applies to all individuals (or “data subjects”) residing in
the EU.

What organizations are subject to GDPR?

GDPR applies to any organization processing personal data that is: (i) established in the EU (regardless of where the personal data processing takes place); (ii) offering goods and services in the EU; or (iii) monitoring behavior of EU individuals.

What data is subject to GDPR?

GDPR applies to personal data that is processed or profiled.

What is Personal Data?

Personal data is any data that relates to an identified or identifiable individual, including elements such as: (i) location data; (ii) online identifiers; (iii) identification numbers; and (iv) profiling data (e.g., cookie data). Personal data also includes personal characteristics such as physical, physiological, genetic, mental, economic, cultural, or the social identity of an individual.

What is Profiling?

GDPR applies to those circumstances where individuals are profiled, or where personal data is used to evaluate certain personal aspects of an individual. Using Internet preferences and cookie data to create individual profiles falls into this category. Profiled personal data includes information such as economic situation, personal preferences, interests, online behavior, IP addresses, geo-location data, and movement data.

What is Data Processing?

Data Processing is defined quite broadly under GDPR and includes any action, whether automated or not, performed on personal data. Such actions may include viewing personal data on a computer screen (regardless of where the data is stored) and transforming or classifying information. Any personal data processing must be performed in compliance with GDPR.

What is a Data Controller?

A Data Controller is any organization that owns or controls the means of personal data. Customers using Marin’s solutions may be Data Controllers under GDPR.

What is a Data Processor?

A Data Processor is any third-party to whom a Data Controller provides personal data for processing. These may include consultants, agencies, tracking technology providers, ad tech analytics, marketing firms, CRM providers, marketing analytics tools, and outsourced email providers. Marin operates as a Data Processor under GDPR when providing services to our customers.

What actions has Marin taken in preparation for GDPR?

Marin always has maintained the highest standards with respect to protecting confidential information and complying with privacy rules and regulations around the globe. We have reviewed this status in the context of GDPR to ensure compliance.

Audits and Certifications

  • Marin performs periodic security scans on our applications and networks.
  • Marin works with an EU-based independent third-party to perform penetration tests and vulnerability assessments to ensure that we are operating at the highest standards.
  • Marin’s data center is a Tier IV gold SSAE No. 16 audited facility that meets the highest standards for data center security.
  • Marin Software complies with PCI-DSS standards for credit card processing.


Privacy-by-Design and Privacy-by-Default

  • Marin employs Privacy-by-Design principles in our product planning and development practices.
  • Marin also uses Privacy-by-Default principles to ensure our products remain compliant throughout their lifecycle.
  • Data Protection Impact Assessments (DPIA): Marin supports our customers by providing assistance with DPIAs that involve Marin’s applications.


Dedicated Security and Privacy Team

  • Marin’s security and privacy team are here to answer our customer’s questions and provide support in their security and privacy initiatives.
  • Marin has appointed a Data Protection Officer to oversee and our compliance with data privacy requirements world-wide.


Transparency

  • Marin supports our customer’s privacy and security programs by providing guidance and documentation to enable transparent data processing practices.
  • Marin’s tracking technologies can be configured to support our customer’s privacy requirements.


Data Minimization

Marin only processes the minimum amount of data necessary to provide our customers with meaningful analytics and management tools.

What if I have additional questions?

Ask your Marin Customer Success representative or contact Marin's privacy office at privacy@marinsoftware.com.

Additional GDPR Resources:

We're excited to share Marin’s win at this year’s Drum Search Awards in London, where our search solution was recognized for its innovative features:

  • First Party Data/Personalization: Marketers can personalize targeting based on real audience insights
  • Marin SmartSync: Allows brands and marketers to ‘copycat’ their campaigns from Google to Bing with one click
  • Search Intent: Allows marketers to understand where their prospective customers are in the sales cycle
  • Marin TruePath: Links Google and Facebook, de-duping conversion, impression, and click data across devices, providing a complete view of the customer journey


marin software


Constant Innovation for Continued Success


At a black-tie event in the London Marriott Hotel Grosvenor Square, we were recognized as the best product on the market for increasing performance and revenue for search marketers, anticipating their future needs, and allowing them to run seamless cross-channel and cross-device campaigns.

We work hard to ensure that our customers gain a financial lift from using our platform, with some customers seeing an overall lift of 45%. We’ve also been able to boost cost efficiencies and time savings by over 60%.

The judging panel included industry experts across prominent brands and agencies, including Google, Facebook Atlas, and Philip Morris International.

Icing on the Cake


As our RVP of Sales, Richard May, said, “We’re really proud. Marin Search has been helping brands around the world get the most out of their ad spend and make informed budget allocation decisions. Recently we've really focused on innovating our offering, and it’s great to see this hard work paying off. Being nominated in such a competitive category is fantastic recognition of this work and winning the award is the icing on the cake.”

Watch an interview with our Marketing Director EMEA, Irisini Davis.

In its effort to protect its users’ privacy, Facebook is focusing on data security. With the introduction of changes around access of information via their API, it’s now easier for folks on Facebook to find and manage their privacy settings. As part of the strategy, Facebook also removed some targeting options dependent on third-party data providers (i.e., Partner Categories).

The Difference with Marin


While Facebook’s changes might affect advertisers’ marketing capabilities, it won’t affect Marin’s core working processes, since we don’t rely or store any personally identifiable information for the activity on our platform.

Nevertheless, we know that Partner Categories was essential for advertisers in particular verticals. For instance, those in the automotive, financial, and insurance industries rely on targeting options available in Partner Categories to refine their campaigns by targeting specific demographic sectors unavailable in other audience settings. Without the third-party possibilities, these advertisers may see a decrease in their social account performance.

To address these issues and improve ad campaign performance, advertisers can take advantage of Marin Software’s industry-leading targeting features. This is how we do it:

Optimizing based on the source of truth


Marin Software is an open platform that allows advertisers to integrate cost and conversion data coming from third-party tracking partners such as Google Analytics, Omniture, and DCM (among many others). You can manage and optimize all of your social media campaigns towards your source of truth, resulting in better results.

Search Intent Audiences


Our advanced targeting allows you to harness search audiences on social, and retarget high-value social audiences browsing on search. This creates a high-quality audience that allows you to implement more relevant and resonant bidding and creative strategies for your core customers and prospects. For example, Le Slip Français saw a 67% increase in Facebook conversion volume after running Search Intent Audiences, plus a 241% increase on Google.

Prospecting audiences from Search Intent


Marin allows you to create lookalike audiences based on core Search Intent audiences. When people show specific intent, you can use those insights to find new audiences that share similar characteristics. Learn how a leading automotive brand maximized its lead generation with Search Intent audiences on Facebook.

Enhanced lookalikes


With Marin Social, advertisers can create lookalike audiences with a similarity level of up to 20%—in contrast to Facebook’s 10% similarity level. While these high-similarity audiences may not be ideal for direct response campaigns, they’re very effective for top-of-funnel initiatives such as branding campaigns. With Facebook users sharing less personal info and the absence of Partner Categories, enhanced lookalikes are a great way to keep your interest-based targeting up, running, and successful.

Campaign lookalikes


This audience type is unique to Marin Software. It allows you to create lookalike audiences from your campaigns’ performance. With this feature, you can decide which campaigns performed the best based on your unique source of truth, whether it’s the Facebook pixel or other source. For example, Performics-Starcom used campaign lookalikes to triple its ROI.

Without a doubt, Facebook’s updates to its audience targeting solutions are game changers. Still, you can continue to drive business growth by using Marin’s valuable enhanced audiences. To learn more, request a demo today.

Clutch Magazine sat down with Chris Lien, Marin Software CEO and Founder, to discuss how ad tech providers can rebound and regain advertiser trust.

Confidence in the ad tech industry is rocky, and its reputation with brands is at a crossroads. Over the course of 2017 industry critics concluded that there might be too much fraud and too little quality. Christopher Lien, Founder and CEO of Marin Software, spoke with Clutch about how ad tech providers can regain advertiser trust.

In Germany, it’s very much about viewability, safety, and transparency in digital marketing. Does ad tech have a trust issue? Are different countries having different discussions (such as US, UK, FR, Asia)?

Lien: Safety and transparency are top-of-mind for most digital marketers. Advertisers want to know that they’re receiving value and performance for their advertising investments. Ad tech hasn’t always done a good job in terms of its business practices, and this does create a trust issue. Also, there’s a bias to "trust the technology" that can lead to mistakes such as ads running alongside content that’s not brand-safe.

I think the various issues raised over the past year by advertisers, plus some of the high-profile mistakes, have led ad tech companies and publishers to take a good look at their business practices and how they can do better for their advertisers (and the consumer). Marin has always been an online advertising management platform that’s transparent and focused on the success of the advertiser.

Marin's customers always know where their ads are running, what they’re paying for those ads, and what they’re paying for technology to measure, manage, and optimize those advertising placements. More of the industry is now embracing transparency. But, there are many players in the ad tech industry (and publishers) who are comfortable making money off of more aggressive business practices that we at Marin view as not in the interest of advertisers and consumers.

Psychology defines elements of trust-building as openness, reliability, and integrity. These traits are also often considered relationship-building characteristics. Where does our industry have problems regarding these traits? For example, with integrity, what about the conflict of interest when publishers are offering a bidding tool or an attribution tool at the same time? Also, who owns the data?

Lien: To be fair to the ad tech industry, there are many advertisers who just want to provide a budget to a provider and don't want to take the time to understand what they’re buying from that provider. These opaque, managed services providers then often take advantage of their advertising customers, as they’re not pushed to provide transparency and performance details.

Also, when advertisers use the publishers’ own tools to purchase media on that publisher, there’s an inherent conflict of interest in monitoring where the dollars are being spent on media on that publisher.

What needs to happen, and what do the players need to do to win back trust and confidence from advertisers? What would really make a difference?

Lien: I don't see the current situation as one where all trust has been lost in the ad tech industry ad tech providers, publishers, and advertisers. I do see where we now have more of a dialogue on how the industry builds or rebuilds trust based on transparency and performance. Advertisers need to demand more from their publishers and their ad tech partners, and the publishers and ad tech partners need to do more to act in the interests of the advertisers.

I also believe calling out bad actors in the ad tech industry is a good step, too, and highlighting cases where advertisers have been taken advantage of by low-quality providers.

When it comes to trust, does it matter if the provider is based locally or globally?

Lien: I don't think it matters where the company is based as long as they’re high-quality, focused on delivering performance, and acting in the best interests of their customers, the advertisers. I do think, understandably, that there’s a bias in Germany to want to contract with other German providers. At the same time, Germany's ad tech industry is smaller than the global industry, so German advertisers should take advantage of contracting with best-in-class partners who often aren’t German companies. Non-German companies, of course, have to be compliant with all local laws and regulations.

Marin Software is a US company that’s been very active in Germany for several years. Are the Germans particularly difficult? Is it especially difficult to gain trust of German advertisers?

Lien: Germans are demanding customers, but Marin welcomes their demands. German advertisers generally want to understand the technology they’re buying, how it works, and what the performance is. Those are good signs of an educated advertiser. Additionally, there are unique rules to do business in Germany due to the EU’s regulations on data protection, privacy, and server location. Marin is compliant with all of these regulations and counts among our customers many of Germany's leading companies, including Volkswagen and companies within the Otto Group, for example.

Digital Advertising 2020—what can we expect?

Lien: Digital advertising in 2020 will be quite similar to digital advertising in 2017. This is a world where more and more consumers are spending time online and therefore advertising dollars will continue to flow into online channels, principally search and social.

Access to the internet via different devices, with mobile gaining an ever larger share, will be commonplace. Advertisers will seek to leverage data to deliver a personalized advertisement to each consumer based on various signals and knowledge of that particular person on some anonymized, privacy-compliant basis.

We also know that many goods and services are marketed over the course of a consumer journey beginning with creating awareness, providing information to spark intent, and then moving to fulfill this intent and to ultimately re-engage the customer after the purchase. Marketers will leverage technology platforms such as Marin’s to deliver the right message at the right time on the right device.

I think the biggest changes we’ll see by 2020 will be the availability of ever-faster mobile internet access speeds, in particular 5G, which will make the ability to consume video and rich media even easier. Large video files will be able to stream in real time, which will enable more immediate, immersive, and customizable advertising experiences. I also believe we'll see, by 2020, adoption of augmented and virtual reality for digital advertising opportunities enabled by advances in technology and access speeds.

Finally, we’re now seeing the early stages of voice-activated and chatbot-driven user experiences, and I believe by 2020 both of these activities will be very mainstream for digital advertisers. So, 2020 will look a lot like 2017 in many ways, but there also will be many exciting advances that I expect will be in pretty wide use to create engaging digital advertising experiences for consumers.

What’s your vision for the Marin Software platform?

Our vision for Marin is to provide the world's leading brands with the best-in-class cross-channel, independent, and open performance advertising platform. When we look at how consumers become customers on the internet, about 85% of their time is spent between the properties of Google and Facebook across a variety of devices including desktop, laptop, tablets, and smartphones.

Leading marketers need a platform that enables them to coordinate the management of these two walled gardens to acquire customers and to drive revenue. Marin's platform enables advertisers and their agencies to measure, manage, and optimize their online advertising investments to drive financial performance, time savings, and better business decisions. To do this, advertisers need an open platform, one that’s independent from any publisher, to be their digital ally as they look to make sense of the complexity, scale, and fragmentation of the digital landscape. As part of this, advertisers will look to leverage their first party data to better target their prospects and customers, as well as using second and third party data.

Marin’s open architecture and our ability to support the world’s largest brands enable us to partner with advertisers to help them achieve their marketing objectives. Digital advertising and how advertisers leverage it to drive revenue and to acquire customers is still at a very early stage. We at Marin are excited to work with our customers to help them run better digital advertising programs that deliver better business results.

Thank you for the interview, Mr. Lien.



This interview first appeared in German, in Clutch Magazine. Interview by Cara Hönkhaus.

On a clear, beautiful spring day in Texas, Dana Carpenter sat on the floor of a small plane with her legs dangling out, door wide open and wind gusting in. As her tandem instructor edged them closer to a free fall, she thought, “I can’t believe I’m seconds away from jumping out of a freaking airplane!”

With that, he yelled, “One, two three!” and somersaulted them out of the aircraft.

Not only had Dana never gone skydiving—she had never walked.

A Penchant for Persistence


Dana, a Marin Software Sales Development Researcher in our Austin office, embraced the skydiving challenge head-on, much as she’s done her entire life. As someone with a disability, she’s used to navigating all sorts of situations and terrain, and has competed and spoken at Ms. Wheelchair Texas. Her untiring advocacy is an inspiration to everyone, disabled and able-bodied alike.

She recalls that pre-jump moment: “It goes against all of your instincts to leave the safety of the plane. Luckily you’re strapped to your instructor, who’ll give you that nudge to go.”

As for the training she received, Dana describes it as, “Surprisingly not that much. They had you watch a 30-minute video about what to expect, with a few dos and don’ts. Then you paid and signed a stack of papers, signing your life away! Right before getting on the plane, you met your instructor, who went over a few more things and let you ask any questions.”

From there, it was up in the air and back to the ground, by way of 12,000 feet.

A View from Above


Dana recalls what it felt like being up so high: “While it was in the 70s at ground level, it was really cold up at 12,000 feet. I remember being taken by how beautiful it was up there. The sky was so blue and clear, and you could see for miles and miles. You were so high in the sky that the ground looked like a patchwork quilt of various greens and browns from all the yards and fields below.

“The strange thing was it didn't feel like you were falling at all. During the free fall, you’re falling about 120 miles per hour, so it felt like standing in front of a huge fan with your cheeks flapping in the wind. After about a minute of that, the instructor pulled the ripcord and I came to a complete stop when the parachute deployed. It was kind of jarring.

“The rest of the trip down was very calm and serene. My instructor pointed a few things out in the distance, but mostly he was quiet and let me take it all in. It was literally sensory overload.

“The landing spot was only about the size of your living room, so I remember being amazed that the instructor could pinpoint that tiny circle from so far away. We wouldn't be able to land on our feet like everyone else, so we came in on our bottoms.

“The circle we landed in was filled with pea-sized gravel, so it didn't hurt at all! Also, the shop had a few of the other instructors out in the circle to help catch us, to slow our landing down.

“The whole experience made me feel like a superwoman, but to be honest I was kind of glad to be back on the ground!”

A Story for the Soul


skydiving

Dana’s skydiving story was so inspiring, it was selected for inclusion in the Chicken Soup for the Soul series: Step Outside Your Comfort Zone: 101 Stories about Trying New Things, Overcoming Fears, and Broadening Your World, released in October of this year. Dana shares how they discovered her:

“I receive various writing emails, and one of those emails said that Chicken Soup for the Soul was looking for stories for their upcoming book called Stepping Outside of Your Comfort Zone. I figured that my skydive story fit that pretty well, so on a whim I decided to enter it. A couple of months later I heard back from them that my story was chosen and the rest is history, as they say.”

Chicken Soup for the Soul received over 6,000 entries and chose only 101 stories. It’s a testament to Dana’s confidence, resilience, and strength that she now gets to share her story with a wide audience.

“All my life, I had been proving to people that their doubts in me had no merit, and now I had just proved it to my biggest critic … myself. I realized I could do anything I put my mind to, despite my disability, or perhaps because of my disability. My perspective had changed in an instant. I have never walked, but that day I learned to fly.”


More About Dana




Dana Carpenter is a Sales Development Researcher in Marin’s Austin Office, joining in 2013. Her team identifies a wide range of digital advertisers for growth opportunities and improvement via Marin solutions. She’s passionate about data, and is a fierce advocate for the disabled.

On October 23rd at this year’s International Performance Marketing Awards (IPMA) in London, Marin Software took home the gold, winning Best Paid Social Campaign for our innovative work with The Economist. The IPMA is the largest and most prestigious ceremony in the world for paid advertising.

With Marin’s experts leading the way and tapping into our social campaign management technology, The Economist boosted new subscriptions by 66% through a highly targeted Facebook video campaign. The results shattered targets while generating a 72% lower CPC than image-based ads.


How We Did It


The goal of the campaign was to increase the number of subscriptions to The Economist across 24 countries, including the UK and the US. Along with boosting new signups, The Economist wanted to improve the outlet’s profile as a trusted source of news within social platforms, and to keep conversion costs as low as possible.

The strategy was to focus on converting those who had expressed interest in The Economist by continuously engaging with them. We used two specific ad types—Facebook link posts and animated video ads—to engage readers and encourage them to subscribe.

The team’s tactics ensured a prizewinning campaign:

Dynamic Product Ads

The Economist used Dynamic Product Ads (DPA)— traditionally used only in e-commerce—to target people who’d read an online article on Economist.com. The reader would then receive subscription offers based on the themes of the article. This was an industry-first use of DPA in EMEA.

Unique to Marin: Managed Social Advertising Rules and Ad-level Bidding

The Economist used automated ad pausing to maintain a below-target cost per subscription. The Marin platform automatically paused ads that spent over a set threshold without converting, resulting in more efficient budget allocation.

With managed rules and automated bid management, The Economist increased the reach of its video ads in strong-performing markets, and paused under-performing video ads in other markets. This strategy delivered the maximum number of subscriptions within a target cost per acquisition. In fact, it reduced cost per subscription by 12%.

With ad-level bidding, The Economist achieved granular bidding capabilities on the ad level on Facebook—as opposed to the ad set. This allowed for maximum control over delivery and optimization to meet results.

Video and Animated Covers

The industry is currently mad about video. To ride this trend, ad creative included animated magazine covers and video that provided a much higher engagement CTR of 1.24% on video ads compared to 0.51% on link posts. The Economist also used video carousels to showcase multiple covers in one ad format.

Learn More


We’re proud to have partnered with The Economist to achieve not only record-breaking performance but also a big win at the IPMA! To find out more about how Marin can help your team realize similar results, get in touch today.

SMX East is always packed with great speakers, events, and new ideas, and this year’s conference in NYC was no exception. Marin had an awesome time hosting visitors in booth 426, and got a chance to attend sessions detailing the latest digital marketing trends and big announcements.

Search marketers to rule the martech stack


Scott Brinker, SMX Conference Chair, focused his keynote on why search marketers are uniquely qualified to lead in the new "MarTech Era." Scott’s main argument was that SEO and SEM marketing professionals have the keys to the kingdom—their core skill set includes a blend of marketing operations, content marketing, advertising, conversion optimization, and analytics knowledge.

Looking across the marketing Lumascape, Scott pointed out how many different areas of the martech stack are very familiar to search marketers. Their unique blend of expertise across paid, owned, and earned media—while maintaining a focus on simply getting stuff done—will stand paid search professionals in good stead for the years ahead.

Scott also shared some interesting slides that show how tech giants like Microsoft view their own martech stack, and what solutions are essential to a modern marketing organization. Check out the full version of Scott’s SMX East keynote presentation.

Combining search and social




Marin Software’s Chris Yachouh gave an SMX theater presentation on integrating your search and social campaigns. Many digital advertisers are building their paid campaigns around the customer journey, which jumps across channels, devices, and locations. Given that Facebook and Google make up over 75% of time spent online, it makes sense to run cross-channel campaigns that leverage the synergies across both channels.

For example, users who click your search and social ads are twice as likely to make a purchase. Chris shared how Marin’s platform lets advertisers use search intent signals on Google to create highly targeted custom audiences for social ad campaigns on Facebook.

Bridging the divide between search and social is an idea whose time has come—check out our Search and Social Playbook for more details.

The next big thing in digital advertising?


Voice-based advertising was a recurring theme at SMX East 2017—it cropped up as a topic in sessions, panel discussions, and on the show floor. The argument is that voice-based advertising is causing many advertisers to start exploring beyond keywords and traditional search campaigns.

While most people at the show felt that voice advertising is not yet ready for prime time, there is a strong sense that it’s gaining momentum with both brand and direct-response advertisers. Given the runaway success of visual product ads and the growth of video advertising, it’s clear that paid advertising is leaning into more visual (and spoken) territory that will “rewrite” how users engage with brands.

While keywords still matter and the vast majority of paid search campaigns are built around them, the strategic value of other approaches is growing by the day. I encourage you to read Brian Smith’s article titled The future of paid voice search and monetizing the map for more insight on this topic.

Amazon goes to the store


We’ve seen Amazon move into surprising new markets—recall the $13.7 billion acquisition of Whole Foods that closed in August 2017—but its latest voyage into the paid advertising space is a lot closer to home. In a presentation at SMX by Colleen Aubrey, VP of Performance Advertising at Amazon, we got a better sense of the shopping giant’s expanding vision for retail and paid advertising with Amazon Stores.

Amazon Stores is a self-service offering for retailers already selling their products on Amazon. While the traditional brand experience on Amazon has been product-based and transactional (not to mention lucrative for retailers), it’s hard for companies to deliver cohesive, brand-friendly experiences for their customers. With Amazon Stores, brands can offer a multipage storefront to showcase all their wares, in custom categories and highly personalized shopping experiences.

Amazon is betting that brands will flock to these virtual stores, leveraging the reach and targeting that they’ve always offered alongside a more immersive customer experience. Retailers can take advantage of embedded features like social sharing buttons, in addition to promotional extensions such as Headline Search Ads, to drive store awareness and traffic.

While there are missing pieces in the overall campaign functionality, it certainly looks like Amazon is building out an impressive value proposition for retailers looking to drive customer engagement and loyalty.

Summary


As 2017 draws to a close, it’s clear that Amazon continues to be the driving force behind retail innovation. Voice and innovations across the martech stack are really heating up, while integrated search and social campaigns continue to drive substantial gains for advertisers in terms of incremental revenue and customer acquisition. It’ll be fun to see how these themes develop in 2018.

This is the second article on our annual customer summit, Marin Masters. At this year’s event, our presenters explored several key advertising trends that impact digital marketers today, with a focus on driving more clicks, conversions, and revenue.

Discovering Growth


One of our keynote speakers, Erik Hawkins, Director of Global Product Marketing at Facebook, explored how mobile has impacted customer growth. Mobile has transformed entire industries—think about how eating, dating, or shopping habits have changed—by putting users in control of the overall narrative.

Facebook’s research shows that people consume a piece of content faster on mobile (1.7 seconds) than on desktop (2.5 seconds). Mobile users also browse five fewer products than desktop users. For advertisers, Erik’s advice was clear—the customer journey has changed too much to wait for people to come to you. Today’s top brands must be proactive; they should create purchase intent and reach out to meet customers where they are.


Content in Context


Laura Masters from Oath delved into the importance of brand safety for advertisers, identifying several high profile recent incidents where brands were burned by association with low quality inventory, fake news, and offensive content.

In fact, 75% of consumers feel that brands are responsible for the content their ads appear next to—so advertisers are fully justified in their concerns. Consumers in turn are seeking out trustworthy content from reliable sources, which creates a tremendous opportunity for premium media brands to leverage their established reputation.

In addition to the priority of brand safety, Laura emphasized the message that premium content simply drives better results for advertisers. Check out Laura’s presentation titled The Importance of Content in Context.


Feed Management


Patrick Hentschel from Feedonomics built an excellent business case for designing and optimizing your product feed on Google Shopping and with Facebook Dynamic Ads. Linking your product inventory to an optimized data feed can deliver outstanding results for advertisers. Patrick explained that high feed quality lowers your cost per acquisition (CPA), increases your rank/relevancy, and drives up return on ad spend (ROAS). You can view Patrick’s presentation titled Transform Your Marketing Efforts with Feed Management. Marin and Feedonomics are working together to offer feed management optimization to all our customers, so contact us if you’d like to learn more.



See you at Marin Masters 2018!

With over 1,000 businesses exhibiting and more than 55,000 digital marketing professionals roaming the halls, DMEXCO has indeed secured its spot as the digital marketing spectacle of the year. For many, not only it is the first chance to uncover the latest trends and innovations in digital, it is a mega launchpad for ad tech players (and an opportunity for some serious parties.)

dmexco



Among the many discussions and presentations, five DMEXCO feats rose to the top of the highlights list:

1. The Rise of Influencer Disruption and Killer Millennials


Influencer marketing—arguably defined as a hybrid of affiliate marketing and celebrity-endorsed infomercials—had a prominent seat at the table, with brands and agencies recognizing the growing role of influencers in their social advertising strategy. As consumers continue to adopt online and offline ad blockers, influencer value will run parallel and disrupt how brands go to market. Millennials, also known as the ‘I need it yesterday’ generation, are key protagonists of the influencer disruption movement.

2. All About Attribution


A digital revolution is upon us. Marketing attribution has become more complex than ever before as the concept of the Internet of things (IoT) becomes reality and advanced algorithmic-based adtech continue to dominate the digital marketing industry. DMEXCO was all about examining the importance of using audience data and leveraging cross-channel transparency when measuring digital marketing performance KPIs.

3. Data-Driven Search and Social Advertising


Overlaying user search intent with audience data is all the rave as the concept of machine learning continues to gain momentum. Marketers were keen to learn how to better convert their ad spend into profits. Although Google led the conversation, Marin Software’s Google + Facebook: A Playbook for Cross-Channel Success was one of the most highly sought-out pieces of content available at the conference. This playbook demonstrates the importance of combining search and social advertising channels to deliver above and beyond on performance KPIs.

4. Catching the Moment


DMEXCO is all about the experience—humanizing digital and understanding how artificial intelligence can advance society and empower brands to leverage advertising technologies to ‘capture the moment’. This boils down to connecting with customers wherever they are.

5. Cutting Through the Noise


Sheryl Sandberg, Chief Operating Officer of Facebook delivered a keynote, Building Community and Discovering Growth in a Mobile World, which championed building meaningful connections to achieve growth through mobile. It’s a new take on how brands can leverage traditional marketing techniques in their digital strategy. As we previously noted in our 2017 State of Digital Advertising Report earlier this year, mobile surpassed desktop for the first time, confirming a shift in how people consume information. It therefore makes sense for brands to rethink how they engage with consumers via mobile, differentiate, and break through the clutter.

Marin Masters is our annual customer and partner summit that offers attendees a deep dive into the latest digital marketing trends, including cross-channel advertising, audience targeting, multi-touch attribution, and brand safety. We’re hosting Masters at the Terra Gallery in San Francisco on September 21st and The Standard High Line in New York on September 28th.

We’ve compiled a full-day agenda of thought leadership, deep learning, and networking with top advertisers on the Marin platform. Attendees will enjoy presentations from an exciting lineup of expert speakers, each offering a unique perspective on the state of digital advertising today:


A Sneak Peek at Our Latest Cross-Channel Innovations


At Marin Masters this year, we’ll also be showcasing our next-generation platform that combines the best of search and social advertising. We’ll reveal the how and why of managing campaigns in a single place, including:

  • Viewing performance across search and social campaigns in a single UI
  • Aligning creative and messaging across channels, saving countless hours
  • Planning budgets across new and existing customer audience segments
  • Automatically pushing campaign changes out to multiple publishers


A big shout-out to our key sponsors for adding their insights to our overall agenda for the day:


Marin Masters is an exclusive, invite-only event and space is limited this year. If you’d like to join our waitlist, please use the appropriate button below.







Join the Waitlist for San Francisco










Join the Waitlist for New York


A leading women’s accessory retailer wanted to extend its digital advertising from search alone to a combined search and social strategy. To increase sales, the retailer tested performance of its manual prospecting campaigns against the product sets that Smart Sync for Dynamic Ads generated. The result—ROI increased
by 456%
.

The retailer’s tactics included:

  • Identifying top performing product categories from Google Shopping campaigns
  • Cloning these directly into Facebook
  • Using Dynamic Ads targeting to prospects, transitioning from email lookalike custom audiences to intent lookalikes on the web


Read all about it in our case study.

Advertising performance for a world-famous design and fashion house trended well below its target return on ad spend (ROAS). Strong seasonality and a rapidly shifting marketplace caused sliding sales. These challenges were as tricky to negotiate as the catwalks at Fashion Week.

In with the Marin Crowd



Marin Software collaborated with this fashion house to design a new shopping plan and implement it with the “hautest” marketing technology.

The alliance was an immense success, resulting in a 400% increase in ROAS.

How did we do it? To find out, read the case study.

In the old days of marketing, only the biggest brands could afford to get their messages out to big audiences via mass media vehicles like TV and radio. These days, increased media fragmentation and new tools like retargeting have evened the playing field, allowing mom-and-pop-shops to drive awareness among their target audience even faster than many large brands.

Retargeting provides a huge opportunity to small- and medium-sized businesses, but many marketers aren’t aware of how it works. How do you get started? How do you ensure you’re getting the biggest possible return on your investment? Outdated information about retargeting online can confuse good marketers and keep them unnecessarily sidelined.

We’re here to help. We’ve teamed up with HubSpot to bring you a guide to getting started with retargeting. You’ll get a full overview of all the major types of retargeting, plus insights on how to run your campaigns, create compelling ads, and measure your performance.

Download the free eBook now and start learning how to use retargeting to increase leads and traffic.

retargeting

Facebook Dynamic Product Ads, if we must say so, are pretty badass. In the not-so-distant future, dynamic product ads are the way all digital advertising on social and display will be delivered, regardless of industry or vertical.

Dynamic Ads for Travel (DAT) allows advertisers in the travel industry to automatically deliver personalized ads based on the interest people have shown on their travel site or app. Part of the Marin Social platform, DAT lets you seamlessly create dynamic audience and product sets across each phase of the buyer journey—from retargeting to cross-sell and up-sell.

Meliá Hotels International used DAT to lower its CPA and increase ROI by 6.7 times.

Watch the video to learn how DAT can help you target the right travel audiences, deliver thousands of relevant ads in seconds, and increase your conversions.

facebook dynamic product ads

The people at Marin are as unique as the work we do. Our Life at Marin series highlights the expertise, passions, and backgrounds of our fellow Marinites.

What do you currently do at Marin Software? Were there other roles that you previously held here?



As SVP Engineering, I’m responsible for most of the development (with the exception of social and display development) and Quality Engineering at Marin. My career at Marin has always been in Engineering, starting as Director, then Senior Director, then VP.

What motivated you to join Marin Software?



The people—the interview panel was impressive. I was also attracted by the opportunity to work with a team in China, something I’d always wanted to do.

What is it about your team that you’re most proud of?



Watching the Shanghai team grow from a handful of contractors working on non-customer-facing issues, to a full-fledged subsidiary with around 20 full-time employees who can deliver on most of the existing search functionality.

Is there one thing you can share that you’ve done and are most proud of?



Creating my own Internet startup with a grad school buddy. We raised tens of millions from VCs to build a company around online communities supported by a targeted-ad business model, and later reinvented it to become a streaming video service provider. We grew to around 40 employees, and kept the company going for about eight years.

What was your former professional life?



I’ve worked in the software industry my entire career. I was a developer on the Purify memory-error detection tool at Pure Software before starting my own company. I also worked on a MATLAB to C compiler and at a voice application service provider, where I managed outsourced teams in India.

What are your interests / hobbies?



I like history, travel, cooking, and spending time with my family.

What are you reading now?



Agile Testing: A Practical Guide for Testers and Agile Teams, by Lisa Crispin and Janet Gregory.

During my commute, I listen to many audiobooks. I just finished What Hath God Wrought: The Transformation of America,
1815-1848
, by Daniel Walker Howe.

Now, I’m listening to Lights Out: A Cyberattack, A Nation Unprepared, Surviving the Aftermath, by Ted Koppel.

Which person or organization do you admire most? Why?



George Washington—not only did he lead the Continental Army to victory against all odds, he retired from the presidency after two terms, establishing the tradition of peaceful transition of power in the United States.

As Edgar Allan Poe once said, “There are few cases in which mere popularity should be considered a proper test of merit; but the case of [blog]-writing is, I think, one of the few.”

Okay, so he said “song-writing” instead of “blog-writing.”

It still fits, right?

Well, after tens of thousands of reader visits to Marketing Insights in 2016, the 10 articles below passed the merit test and rose to the top of our “most popular” list. Some are indicators that digital advertising continues to rapidly evolve, others point toward the importance of continual learning, and all of them contributed to a fun, fast-paced year of content creation and curation. Thanks for being part of it.

1. The Ever-Shifting World of Social

2. Google’s Expanded Text Ads–Things to Know and What to
       Do Now


3. Google’s New Ad Layout: Pros, Cons, Ins, and Outs

4. Similar Audiences + Customer Match: Google Ramps up
       First-Party Data Capabilities


5. 3 Facebook Advertising Trends You Need to Know About

6. Why PPC Granularity Will Be Your Best Friend

7. 5 Reach and Frequency Tips for the Modern Marketer

8. Text Versus Product Ads: Shopping Peaks, Valleys, and Plateaus

9. How to Evaluate Programmatic Buying Transparency – Types
       and Tips


10. How to Optimize Impression Share to Increase Brand Awareness

The people at Marin are as unique as the work we do. Our Life at Marin series highlights the expertise, passions, and backgrounds of our fellow Marinites.

What do you currently do at Marin Software? Were there other roles that you previously held here?


I’m a Senior Product Manager on Marin Search. When I joined Marin, my work focused on search publishers—specifically, features for Bing. I still work with Bing, but my work has grown into other, fundamental parts of our application and features for other publishers like Google and Baidu.

What motivated you to join Marin Software?


Marin Software has a great reputation as a performance advertising platform, which really excited me. There are polished features that many leading digital marketers across the world use. I wanted the opportunity to work on next-generation features they'd use on a daily basis to save time and deliver stronger advertising results.

What is it about your team that you’re most proud of?


Commitment and flexibility. Not just among our product managers, but across our organization. No matter what challenges arise from the ever-changing digital marketing landscape, the team is great at finding solutions to solve them.

Is there one thing you can share that you’ve done and are most proud of?


We released some new shopping features this summer, which was a lot of fun. After identifying an opportunity, we came together and put a plan in place to get the functionality out. In fact, just today someone from our Customer Success team passed along a note about a client optimizing his business based on this feature.

What was your former professional life?


My background is actually in digital marketing—starting with interning at an agency many years ago. As my career has serpentined through a few roles, I ended up working on the technology side, which led me to my current position.

What are your interests / hobbies?


Traveling and exploring are at the top of my list. Either around California or across the US and across the world when I can swing it! I also enjoy games and trivia, as well as movies and great TV—I’m working my way through some documentaries and classic horror movies at the moment.

What are you reading now?


But What If We're Wrong? by Chuck Klosterman.

Which person or organization do you admire most? Why?


This is a tough question! I’ve always admired risk takers, because I tend to be reluctant to take big jumps. That said, I might select Ed Catmull, from Pixar. A lot of people don’t realize that Pixar started as a technology company that at one point was selling hardware.

Catmull knew that he wanted to bring innovation to the industry and took a few different approaches to get there. Pixar pivoted to capitalize on its product and eventually became a leader in entertainment. Not exactly the path that he started on, but it still allowed him and his company to take advantage of their technical advantages and change the industry!

The people at Marin are as unique as the work we do. Our Life at Marin series highlights the expertise, passions, and backgrounds of our fellow Marinites.

What do you currently do at Marin Software? Were there other roles that you previously held here?


I’m a software engineer in the Publisher Framework team. I usually work on projects related to ad URLs, and also on projects responsible for syncing data between Marin and publisher databases such as AdWords.

A few years ago, I was an engineering intern on Marin’s Solution Engineering team, implementing custom revenue solutions for large clients.

What motivated you to join Marin Software?


When I first joined Marin, it was through my school’s yearlong internship program. I think Marin was the only California-based company that year (although they have many more now). I was interested in working abroad, although I had no intention of working abroad after graduation at the time.

The information session gave me a brief overview of the ad tech industry, which I found intriguing. I had such a great year, I decided to come back full-time after graduation. My coworkers were (and still are) professional, smart, and fun, and I was already missing them when I went back to school. It’s great to be back.

What is it about your team that you are most proud of?


I love that my team is very helpful with each other. Being on a large team with many projects, things can get quite overwhelming. However, whenever such things happen, people are willing to jump in and help out. It can be as simple as walking through projects with a demonstration of how it works, but this speeds up the overall work tremendously.

What was your former professional life?


If internship counts as professional life, I did a co-op in a children’s hospital research center in Toronto during college. I helped analyze DNA sequences and protein binding sites.

What are your interests/hobbies?


I’ve been running a lot lately. Marin’s San Francisco office is located near the Ferry Building, and running south along Embarcadero towards AT&T Park is amazing. I sometimes stop in the middle of the run to take a picture of the sunset, or simply the great view of the water and the Bay Bridge. I also do a lot of crochet.

What are you reading now?


Les Misérables by Victor Hugo, which I’ve been reading for a while. I don’t think I’ll finish any time soon since it’s so long and descriptive. I already know the whole plot since I read a shorter version as a child and watched the movie, but I think it’s still worth the time to read a great classic. I’ve also been listening to the audiobook version of The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein.

If you could invent or improve on one thing, what would that be? Why?


One thing that comes to mind is an iPhone 7 with an earphone jack. I often charge my phone and listen to music on it at the same time, so its absence was definitely a deal-breaker. I actually don’t need a new phone at the moment, so I wasn’t that disappointed with the announcement, but it seems that a lot of people would appreciate one with an earphone jack.

If you’re an enterprise search marketer, you’re likely managing thousands to millions of keywords. To automatically improve performance, increase brand awareness, get back valuable time, and attain those magic revenue numbers, Marin Search and its bidding folders can help.

If you’re already using Marin Search, follow these tips to make sure you’re maximizing value. Or, if you’re looking for a search platform that makes keyword and account management easier, these tips provide a glimpse of what our leading advertising solution can do.

Automated Bidding


Marin Search uses a patent-pending algorithm to automatically adjust keyword bids to meet target KPIs. This automated bidding feature optimizes keyword bids within folders. For accounts following PPC best practice structure (organizing groups into targeted themes), bidding folders should fall in line with account structure.

adgroups2



If you’re unsure of which ad groups should go into what folder, think about the KPI you’re trying to achieve. All keywords within a folder should have the same target KPI.

Tagging Sub-Categories with Dimensions


The above bidding strategy will optimize all ad groups and category keywords to one KPI. However, each category could contain sub-categories that might not preform the same.

With dimensions, you can pull reports at the sub-category level. Not only can you use this to create granular reports, but it can also help you improve optimization.

For example, the folder ‘Dining Tables’ is set to achieve a CPL of £75—however, a dimension report reveals the actual category-level performance.

table



‘Wooden tables’ is performing 20% below the folder CPL, while the ‘folding tables’ CPL is 20% above. Use the percentage difference as bid boosts for keywords in each category, reallocating spend to the better-performing category. The average folder spend and CPL will remain the same, but the conversion volume will increase.

Dynamic Actions


Once you apply dimensions, Marin can analyze the data to calculate bid adjustments for each sub-category dimension.

To automate dimension bid boosts, use Dynamic Actions. With this feature, bid modifiers simply sit on top of bidding folder calculated bids, and folder settings remain unchanged.

Using dimensions to optimize bidding cross sub-categories, our customers have seen some amazing results:

  • CVR increases up to 80%
  • Revenue increase by 30%
  • A reduction in CPA by 38%


If you’re a Marin customer and would like more information on how to optimize sub-categories within bidding folders, contact our CoE team for a bidding consultation. Or, to see it in action, sign up for a free trial.

We’re delighted to announce that our Marin Engineering tech blog is officially live. We hope that the wider Marin Software and developer communities will connect and learn from this forum.

The blog’s editor-in-chief is Kumar Palaniappan, Technical Director - Platform Engineering - Data, Analytics Services and his team of contributing writers are software engineers Filip Jaros and Julian Jaffe.

The blog already has several great content pieces, covering topics such as:


If you have any questions or want to talk shop, contact Kumar directly.

Earlier this month, Marin Live celebrated its first birthday, and what a year it’s been!

In the last year, we’ve held 132 live training webinars covering eight different topics in two languages, reaching 40 countries on
5 different continents
—and that’s only counting live participants! We think it’s safe to assume that recordings of Marin Live are being viewed from many, many more countries around the globe.

On top of that, our participants have logged more than 7,000 training hours via live webinars, post-webinar recordings, and permanent recordings housed in our Support Center. We’re currently averaging 11 live webinars a month and we’re on track to present many more in the future.

So what’s next?

  • We’re refreshing our existing content. We’ve updated all of our intro search webinars to make sure we continue to offer our customers fresh, up-to-date information that aligns with publisher best practices, even as those best practices change.
  • We’re tiering our content and offering advanced webinars. The four intro-level webinars we introduced last year continue to form the core of our program, but in August we launched our brand new Revenue Tracking & Troubleshooting. We’re working on offering more intermediate and advanced content in the future.
  • We’re adding more languages. Our English and Spanish content has been so popular, we’re working on localizing our webinars into even more languages, so that we can continue to bring our amazing content to new users the world over.
  • We’re creating new content. We're adding new webinars on troubleshooting activity log errors, Google Expanded Text Ads, and much more.


We're ready to celebrate. If you'd like to join the party and learn more about how we can help you quickly grow audiences and revenue, contact us today.

The people at Marin are as unique as the work we do. Our Life at Marin series highlights the expertise, passions, and backgrounds of our fellow Marinites.

What do you currently do at Marin Software?



I joined Marin Software in June 2016 as a Senior Network and Security Engineer. As a member of the Site Reliability Engineering (SRE) team in the San Francisco office, my main responsibility is the design, support, and operations of Marin’s enterprise network and IT security systems. One of my primary responsibilities is ensuring that Marin’s software network has the highest network availability and most secure access to our applications.

What motivated you to join Marin Software?



The HR personnel and the staff that I interviewed with, and the Site Reliability Engineering team members I met, left me with a good impression of the company and the culture. I enjoy being able to be part of a great team here, where I can contribute my expertise and experience, and apply my skills and knowledge to provide excellent support for our clients.

What is it about your team that you’re most proud of?



It was clear right off the bat that my Site Reliability Engineering team is hard-working, capable of balancing many plates in the air at once, and working long hours without complaining. They’re great team members and good people. They’re a professional group who believes in providing good support and services to our clients. I admire their dedication, commitment, and hard work. Basically, they’re cool dudes.

They manage to keep the systems up, and work behind the scenes on application deployments, keeping up with daily requests, answering questions from other team members, and participating in daily stand ups. They’re the ones on call after hours.

Is there one thing you can share that you’ve done that you’re most proud of?



I like to lead by example and enjoy helping people who need help. It’s something I like to encourage everyone to do. This is especially something I continue to strive to do for my kids. We have to show our humanity and empathy. I believe that the presence of empathy leads to healing and resolution. Helping people can be shown and achieved in many ways.

What was your former professional life?



I’ve been working in IT for over 20 years. I was a principal network and security engineer for over 10 years with a large enterprise company in Oakland, California. When my daughter turned 16, I decided to become an IT contractor to spend more time with her before she went to college. I contracted with another large company in San Francisco before I joined Marin in June 2016. It was very special to spend time with my daughter before she started college.

I’m like every other IT engineer—we love new technology and working with it, especially networking and security technology.


What are your interests and hobbies?



I think my hobbies have changed over the years. In the past seven-plus years I started to skydive and I love the freedom I feel while doing it. I like to stay fit and healthy, and I enjoy running almost seven days a week. In the past, I completed the San Francisco Marathon and half marathon. I also enjoy traveling and have visited many countries, with hopefully many more to come. This year we went twice to Sydney, Australia, and visited Brisbane. While there, I got to see and feed kangaroos at the Australia Zoo.

What are you reading now?



John Grisham is one of my favorite authors. The Street Lawyer was the last book I completed. I’m still in the middle of The Rainmaker and The Broker. I like to read mysteries, too.

Which person or organization do you admire most? Why?



I’ve been with Marin for over 90 days. I believe everyone is working hard for the common good including Operations, Development, Engineering, Marketing, HR, and other groups. Everyone is doing a great job. I interact most with my team and Operations. They both have my admiration.

The people at Marin are as unique as the work we do. Our Life at Marin series highlights the expertise, passions, and backgrounds of our fellow Marinites.

What do you currently do at Marin Software? Were there other roles that you previously held here?


I’m RVP Agencies, North America. I lead the Agency team and client roster for North America. I’ve been with Marin for four and a half years, and my previous roles were Agency Relationship Manager and Senior Director of Services, East.

What motivated you to join Marin Software?


About eight years ago, I was managing an agency search team and after vetting several platforms, we chose Marin. The platform was a game changer for our team in terms of efficiency and performance. Most importantly, I had a chance to work with really brilliant people in ad tech. When Marin opened the New York office and a position became available, I jumped at the chance to join the team.

What is it about your team that you’re most proud of?


My team is extremely well-versed in digital media and the Marin application. They’re enthusiastic, service-oriented people who really want to help their customers succeed. Most of them have worked for agencies and have strong empathy for their agency customers. They work hard and care about each other. I’m most proud of this incredible team.

What do you enjoy most about your role? What would you like to learn more about?


I enjoy working across teams at Marin and we all learn so much from each other. I also enjoy the strong relationships I’ve developed with our clients over the years. I’ve seen many search marketers start out in the field and become Marin advocates—they carry their affinity for Marin as they move through their careers, and Marin in turn is developing to evolve with the ever-changing landscape.

What was your former professional life?


I have a degree in education, and an MS in applied math and operations research. I’ve taught at almost every level, most recently mathematics at the college level.

What are your interests / hobbies?


A lot of live music, reading, and skiing.

What are you reading now?


I’m currently reading The Monsters of Templeton by Lauren Groff. It’s a dramatic novel that takes place in Cooperstown, NY—an absolutely beautiful place that I recently visited (to see live music, of course!). I just finished A Tale for the Time Being by Ruth Ozeki and can’t wait until she writes another book. Everyone should read her novels.

Who is the one person, group of people, or organization that you admire most? Why?


My mother and my son are the most important influences in my life. My mother was a Czechoslovakian war refugee who was taken in by an English coal mining family during the war. She lost most of her family in the war, but she ended up having this fantastic, adventurous, rich life. She taught me to take chances, look at the bright side, and find goodness in everyone. She was incredibly intelligent and brave. My son knows almost everything, is passionate and independent, and makes me laugh a lot.

Online gambling is one of the most profitable digital industries, and it's constantly expanding. Yet, it’s also one of the most challenging markets for digital advertisers. As technologies improve and strategies develop, the competition grows fiercer each day.

At the same time, the rise of social media forms a perfect marriage between a gaming industry that’s exploded and an advertising channel perfectly suited to what online gambling providers want to achieve—an even larger market and more players.

Advertising strategy for online gambling depends on many factors, differs according to specific brand requirements and goals, and requires a lot of testing to determine what works best. The key to success is to have a clear strategy and apply a few general best practices.

In this article, we look at an example of a robust gambling strategy, discuss challenges, and offer recommendations for campaign optimization.

A Four-Pronged Strategy for Online Gambling Providers



You should include four essential phases in your strategy:

  • Branding
  • Acquisition
  • Retargeting
  • Retention


schema-gamblingpost



To make sure you’re staying ahead of the competition, it’s important your strategy covers all phases of the typical online gambler journey, from the branding to retention, and that you use ads and targeting tactics that are the most useful in each phase. Any tweaks to the strategy will depend on your budget and resources, but having a clear structure makes planning easier and your ad campaigns more successful.

Further, there are a few things to note in order to maximize the effectiveness of your campaigns:

  • Facebook provides plenty of options for each step of the user journey. Determine what would be suitable for your core strategy, and consider others as appropriate. Make sure each option has a clear rationale.
  • Prepare the creative assets in advance for each ad type you’re launching and align it to the right steps in the user journey.
  • Define your preparation plan in great detail and always have a plan B. Build your targeting audiences and have a few additional ones built in case the core ones aren’t performing. Your preparation plan should include testing, and that plan should easily and efficiently allow you to determine the best performing demographics, ad types, placements, etc.



What are the Benefits of This Strategy?



Here are several great advantages from using this strategy, plus a few more tips for how to get the most out of it.

Branding

  • Facebook video ads: Facebook video ads are approximately 7x cheaper compared to YouTube, and open up an opportunity to reengage users who viewed your video.
  • Reach and frequency: Reach a significant number of people and control message frequency through reach and frequency campaigns, ideal for brand awareness.



Acquisition

  • Ad types and segmentation: Test different ad types to make sure you’re covering all available opportunities, and segment your audience to make sure you’re targeting high-value users. Audience segmentation and exclusion can significantly improve delivery and performance.
  • Instagram ads: Because of the image-driven nature of Instagram and the fact that users are more likely to connect with interactive content, these ads maximize the value of your creative and increase user engagement. This is a great option to leverage your content and increase the number of conversions.
  • Video reengagement: Use this to reengage with users who are familiar with and have shown interest in your brand. This is a good option for increasing the number of conversions and driving more high-value players.



Retargeting

  • Custom audiences: Make use of all ad types and optimize accordingly. Target audiences using Website Custom Audiences. Also create custom audiences of people who’ve registered but haven't made a purchase, and target with an alternative offer.
  • Search intent retargeting: This allows you to improve audience targeting and lower the CPA on your retargeting campaigns. Cross-channel retargeting ensures you’re reaching all of the most relevant, high-value users.
  • Dynamic Ads (DAs): Use Facebook DAs on different games to automate retargeting, and to show the most relevant game to your engaged users, driving them to convert.



Retention

  • Segmentation: Segment your custom audience and make use of ad types and messaging accordingly. Apply a “softer” method of engagement with these users by leveraging blog content, different offers, upgrades, and photo albums from user events. Also use Facebook’s immersive Canvas ads to get users more involved in the life of your brand.



Challenges



Once your strategy’s clear and your campaigns are live, you’ll likely run into a few challenges. Here are a few common ones and how to handle them.

  • Your ad images, text, and targeting affects CTR—the lower the CTR, the higher the CPC: Stop any ads that aren’t meeting targets and have very low CTR.
  • Targeting or product affect CVR—the lower the CVR, the higher the CPA: Review your targeting strategy, your website, and your user funnel.
  • Campaigns have poor delivery: Check audience overlap and make sure to use exclusions. Also make sure you’ve allocated sufficient budget.



For a real-life example of how an online gambling site hit the jackpot with their CTR and saved big on CPAs, read our Leo Vegas case study.

Gary Leung

The people at Marin are as unique as the work we do. Our Life at Marin series highlights the expertise, passions, and backgrounds of our fellow Marinites.

What do you currently do at Marin Software? Were there other roles you previously held here?


Hi! I’m a dedicated resource for our strategic-level clients. I help them achieve technical and operational success with Marin. I work closely with clients, account managers, and product teams to ensure needs are clearly understood and met.

Previously at Marin, I was a Customer Success Director and primary client relationship holder. Prior to that, I was an Engagement Manager working more on the technical and strategic side. My current role is in many ways a marriage of these two roles, bringing value through strategic, technical, and communicative experience.

What motivated you to venture into the customer success profession?


I got my start on the agency side, managing accounts and account teams. Coming to Marin allowed me to explore the technical side of the business. A knowledge base of strategy, implementation, and now the technology itself allowed me to holistically service client needs, which is something I really enjoy.

How would you describe the Marin Software approach in connecting with our customers? What is it about your team that you’re most proud of? What one thing did you do in this role that you’re most proud of?


Marin is a client-focused company first and foremost. We have an open dialogue with our clients, and our features and methods are never black-box. A large part of how we gain trust is by letting our clients know the exact logic behind what they’re using.

I’m proud that our team is encouraged to be honest. Our founder’s motto was always “keep it real,” which is how we continue to operate. We’ll let you know the good, the bad, and the necessary ugly before it becomes beautiful.

What do you enjoy most about your role? What would you like to learn more about?


What I enjoy most is not being tied down to one function. It can be technical one moment and strategic the next. You seldom get bored when your role is so open. Our company is forever expanding and innovating, so I can always learn more about what we can do and what we’re working towards. In fact, I keep an ongoing list of “What did I learn today” and I can tell you it’s updated daily!

What was your former professional life?


I mentioned a background in the agency world, which is how I got my start in SEM and SEO.

Before that, I worked for a biofuel technology company that would harness pollutants to rapidly grow algae. My first gig was at a progressive culture magazine covering art, music, and fashion.

What are your interests/hobbies?


My hobbies change pretty frequently. Lately I’ve been getting rid of my towering pile of old novels and trading up for design and art books. I host a monthly 90s Simpsons trivia night, and I occasionally DJ current rap and R&B music. The Simpsons event is a lot more popular and generally no one attends the latter, but I enjoy them both.

What are you reading now?


I’m halfway through a collection of essays by Dave Hickey called Air Guitar. The author is considered the “bad boy” of art criticism, which sounds ridiculous, I know. I think he earned the title being a contrarian defender of despised work and by dropping the occasional F-bomb. His essays reference a lot of significant artists, critics, writers, musicians, etc., which has me constantly putting the book down to look up the name and learn more.

I’m also chipping away at the Chad Butler of UGK biography. It’s over 700 pages long, which is unheard of for a rapper’s biography.

Who is the one person/group of people/organization you admire most? Why?


Gosh, big question. My mother is a war refugee who flew over on the floor of a U.S. military cargo plane then found fulfillment in America. My father also came up through poverty to find success here. So off the bat those are my two. Though from a more superficial level, I admire the early cultural adopters. Those who see the incredible in what’s currently unpopular and champion it until the rest follow suit—names like Jim Walrod and the PS1 museum in Queens come to mind. I could go on and on, but I should stop!

On June 22nd and 23rd, Marin Software exhibited at the SMX Advanced conference in Seattle. Many of our partners joined us there—Bing, TVTY, and DialogTech, just to name a few. As always, it was wonderful to chat with so many existing customers and meet those who are less familiar with Marin.

SMX Advanced is a conference chock-full of marketers who live and breathe digital advertising in their 9-5 jobs. It was interesting and illuminating chatting with them at our booth, about everything from Shopping to Facebook DPAs.

There really is no better conference to attend if you’re looking to get a pulse on what the real-world challenges of advanced digital marketers are, and we’re already looking forward to next year’s event. It’s always a pleasure to share what’s new at Marin with our audience, but we’re committed to learning what online marketers’ pain points are and evolving to meet their needs.


Are you at @SMXseattle? Come visit Marin at booth #19. Grab some schwag & enter to win an ipad mini! 🙌🏽 #SMXadvanced pic.twitter.com/6CB005A5Ry


— Marin Software (@MarinSoftware) June 22, 2016




We also had the pleasure of presenting our Biggest Search Geek grand prize winner, Christoff Berlage, with his trophy. Christoff, who hails from the UK, earned a score of 93% on the quiz. Runners up included European Regional prize winner Elouise James, North American Regional contest winner Jake Hughes, and Danny Lam, who picked up the Australian Regional award.

Congrats to our @SMXseattle #BiggestSearchGeek, Christoff Berlage! 🏆👈 #SMXadvanced pic.twitter.com/72gkFVxt3i — Marin Software (@MarinSoftware) June 23, 2016




This is a guest post from Sarah Burns, Content Manager
at
Boost Media.

With the introduction of Google’s Expanded Text Ads (ETA), marketers have a more robust ad format that allows for more text, and Google has the ability to manipulate the layout to fit the appropriate screen for display. While this is a strong shift toward mobile-first that levels the playing fields between natural search (SEO) ads and AdWords, it doesn’t guarantee better performance.

Google reports that some advertisers could experience up to a 20% lift in CTR. The important word here is “some,” as it indicates that simply expanding ads with no plan is not a guarantee of success. What follows is a set of scenarios you should test that will help guarantee the best possible performance lift for your brand.

Scenario 1: Test standard ads versus ETAs using a generic new headline


  • With large accounts, it’s unrealistic to think that you can write custom copy for every ad. It’s important to try to find suitable headline additions that can be applied across the tail of an account.
  • Be sure to test this method on groups of ad groups. The same additional headline in one product line will probably not work in another product line.
  • Don’t test things like “Buy Now!”. The odds of this generic approach being a success are very low.


Scenario 2: Test standard ads versus custom headlines


  • The head and much of the trunk of an account need custom copy. Testing custom copy against the old standard ads will ensure that you don’t just replace old copy with longer copy that’s worse. Our early testing shows that standard ads can outperform ETA ads if ETA is done poorly.
  • Don’t be afraid of rewriting the entire ad. Adding copy to the end of a headline doesn’t guarantee that the entire ad will make sense or drive clicks.
  • Focus on the big ad groups, as custom writing can be time-consuming.


Why not test everything at once?


Be sure to focus on one thing at a time. If you mix descriptions, headline, and paths in one test, you may introduce a better overall ad, but one section may be causing the lift while the other changes are actually causing a drop. By focusing on one variable at a time, you stand a better chance of isolating what caused the lift and understanding the drivers behind what to do next. As you move toward complete optimization, many times you’ll gain insights that can be applied to other parts of the ad.

I don’t have the time for this. What should I do?


Simply put: make the time. If you don’t prepare for ETA and your competitors do, you can expect to see a drop in performance as the competition captures more of the impressions and clicks. Just as Rome wasn’t built in a day, you don’t have to do this overnight. Set a steady pace and a strategy, and you’ll be on the way to performance increases.


About the Author


sarah

Sarah manages Content Marketing at Boost Media and leads a team of marketing professionals to drive revenue through complex B2B marketing campaigns in the ad tech industry. Prior to joining Boost, Sarah developed marketing and sales strategy at BNY Mellon, a top 10 private wealth management firm. In a former life, Sarah worked in journalism writing for magazines including Boston Magazine, The Improper Bostonian, and Luxury Travel. When she’s not writing engaging content, Sarah enjoys cooking, running, and yoga.

About Boost Media


Boost Media increases advertiser profitability by using a combination of humans and a proprietary software platform to drive increased ad relevance at scale. The Boost marketplace comprises over 1,000 expert copywriters and image optimizers who compete to provide a diverse array of perspectives. Boost’s proprietary software identifies opportunities for creative optimization and drives performance using a combination of workflow tools and algorithms. Headquartered in San Francisco, the Boost Media optimization platform provides fresh, performance-driven creative in 12 localized languages worldwide.

01-Yovanno



On Thursday, May 26th, we held our first-ever Executive Summit in San Francisco at the beautiful Box SF, where we brought back many of the great presenters from our New York City Executive Summit. Our group of digital marketing leaders gathered around what’s reputedly the longest table in North America—crafted from centuries-old Chinese village gate doors.

This event, sponsored by Marin Software partner Bing, finished with a sommelier-led wine tasting.

03-Guests



04-Wine



Our Regional Vice President of Customer Success, Diran Hafiz, gave a presentation about our Customer Success team. It’s a quick and interesting watch, both for customers interested in how things work behind the scenes at Marin, and anyone curious about the current, primary areas of consideration for the online advertising community.

As you search online for the cheapest flights, the top island destinations, or where a solo traveler can find the best international cuisine, remember—no matter where you are, the mind of the digital marketer always craves useful information to stay competitive.

Whether you end up flying high across multiple time zones or enjoying a staycation this summer, here are a few time-friendly reads from the Marin Software vault to bring along for the ride.

White papers:


Blog posts:


Bonus: This is actually 55 minutes worth of reading, not an hour. Use those extra five minutes to schedule a demo, and learn how we can help you with any and all of the above. Bon voyage!

Did you know that Marin's 2nd largest (and arguably coolest) office is in Austin? Austin houses many different teams - Sales, Support, Professional Services, Centers of Excellence for Search and Analytics, Account Management...even Engineering and Finance. Our office floor is open-concept, which allows us to interact in a seamless, fluid way.

If you've ever wondered what it's like to work at Marin Austin, take a peek into a day in the life of a Customer Success (CS) Manager.

8:30a: Hop into the kitchen for a cup of coffee from our latte lounge - maybe grab breakfast with a colleague from our fully stocked kitchen!

9a: Go through my emails and calendar to get organized. Lots of meetings today!

9:30a: Meet with Lindsay, Crystal, and Mickey from our Center of Excellence to review ongoing client projects. Current projects include an account restructure and cleanup for an education client, a competitive analysis for a retail client, and a conversion funnel analysis for a travel client.

10:30a: Recurring call with a client where I provide updates on the platform and industry, and we discuss open cases and projects.

11a: Meet with Andy from Customer Support, working on a new case workflow since he’s collecting internal feedback from different teams.

12:30p: Team lunch! Wouldn't be Austin without some BBQ.

[caption id="attachment_7735" align="alignnone" width="500"]

A few of the folks on our Austin Customer Success team: Account Management, Professional Services, Business Intelligence, Centers of Excellence, and Customer Support

A few of the folks on our Austin Customer Success team: Account Management, Professional Services, Business Intelligence, Centers of Excellence, and Customer Support[/caption]

1:30p: Analytics Office Hours with Kate, Nachbar, and Paco. This weekly meeting allows all account management teams to come together and bring optimization questions, cases, and situations to the Analytics team, and share knowledge and experiences.

3:00p: Meet with Jack and Krista from our Professional Services team to prep for a call for a new integration project for a client, where we’ll use Marin’s Smart Tag to collect audience data and retarget across channels.

4:00p: Call with client, Jack, and Krista to review the integration plan and sign off on next steps.

4:30p: Last meeting of the day, another recurring client call to share updates and discuss projects.

6p: In-office happy hour - no better way to end a busy day than to grab a Lonestar from our kitchen, and head up to the rooftop terrace to enjoy the beautiful views of downtown Austin and the capitol.

[caption id="attachment_7736" align="alignnone" width="500"]

Downtown Austin

A view from Marin Austin's rooftop[/caption]

This is a guest post from Sarah Burns, Content Manager
at
Boost Media.

By now, you’ve heard about Google's Expanded Text Ads. This is big news for search engine marketers. Initial Google reports cite click-through rate increases of up to 20% for some advertisers. With more than nine billion ads impacted by Google’s change, a massive amount of copywriting is required to adapt.

All advertisers will have to react quickly, and spend more marketing dollars to adjust and profit—or else miss out on a huge opportunity. What can you do now?

Start planning early


Advertisers who move fast and adapt to the new format stand to benefit in two ways:

  • Leveraging the additional creative real estate allows you to weave in new messages as you communicate to your customers, resulting in more clicks and purchases.
  • Ads in the new format will look more aesthetically appealing, compared to the older ads that advertisers who don’t switch over will have to settle for.


Don’t rely on the traditional methods


The new format allows for an extra headline with more characters, a longer description line, and a customizable URL. Don’t waste the extra space by employing Excel spreadsheets or ad templates to update ads. The traditional methods won’t work for a seminal shift of this scope.

Mashing description lines one and two together will leave you with a confusing and disparate message. Most advertisers write the two lines of text as separate ideas, and when they’re pushed together, they don’t flow as a logical and cohesive message.

Where to go from here


Advertisers need a solution that makes it possible to write and rewrite ads in the new format with speed, quality, and scale. Through an exclusive partnership with Boost Media, Marin Software has an automated tool that can rewrite your ads to be ETA-compatible. If you’d like to get up and running on ETA ads today, you can get started here.


About the Author


sarah

Sarah manages Content Marketing at Boost Media and leads a team of marketing professionals to drive revenue through complex B2B marketing campaigns in the ad tech industry. Prior to joining Boost, Sarah developed marketing and sales strategy at BNY Mellon, a top 10 private wealth management firm. In a former life, Sarah worked in journalism writing for magazines including Boston Magazine, The Improper Bostonian, and Luxury Travel. When she’s not writing engaging content, Sarah enjoys cooking, running, and yoga.

About Boost Media


Boost Media increases advertiser profitability by using a combination of humans and a proprietary software platform to drive increased ad relevance at scale. The Boost marketplace comprises over 1,000 expert copywriters and image optimizers who compete to provide a diverse array of perspectives. Boost’s proprietary software identifies opportunities for creative optimization and drives performance using a combination of workflow tools and algorithms. Headquartered in San Francisco, the Boost Media optimization platform provides fresh, performance-driven creative in 12 localized languages worldwide.

For many of us in the United States, Memorial Day is an eagerly anticipated three-day weekend and the official start of summer. But for our nation’s history and collective memory, it is much more - and rightly so. The total number of Americans killed in all U.S. wars is more than 1 million. Truly, freedom is never free. We're immensely grateful for the ultimate sacrifice those in our armed forces have made.


We honor the fallen - and soldiers who continue to serve - and all the families and friends they left behind. I encourage you to fly the American flag this weekend.


- David A. Yovanno, Marin Software, Chief Executive Officer

On Thursday, April 28th, we held our first ever Executive Summit in New York City at The Standard Hotel.

The afternoon's talks were sponsored by Marin Software partner Yahoo and led by Marin Software's CEO, David A. Yovanno. We had a great roster of Marin presenters, who walked through our roadmap and shared their thoughts about the future of digital advertising.

We were also lucky to have Daina Middleton, the former Head of Global Business Marketing at Twitter and former CEO of Performics, and Sonia Carreno, the President of IAB Canada, as speakers.

Daina spoke about the Power of Prediction in today’s fast-moving marketing landscape. Sonia reviewed the current state of the nation in media usage, outlined major industry issues, and explained steps being taken to remove obstacles to growth.

The day’s presentations were rounded out by a fabulous wine and cheese tasting in the afternoon, guided by The Standard’s leading sommelier (you can catch him and his bowtie in the story below).


Marin CEO Dave Yovanno welcomes guests to our inaugural Executive Summit in New York City - #MarinExecSummitNYC pic.twitter.com/1xKFj7uE4C


— Marin Software (@MarinSoftware) April 28, 2016




Our Customer Success Team shares an early look at our new platform infrastructure. #MarinExecSummitNYC pic.twitter.com/em0XOFTUPV — Marin Software (@MarinSoftware) April 28, 2016





.@DainaMiddleton on the power of prediction. #MarinExecSummitNYC


"Only .06% of things that could be connected to internet currently are."

— Marin Software (@MarinSoftware) April 28, 2016




Way to go putting strong women on stage today @MarinSoftware ! https://t.co/yFORQtrsWc — Daina Middleton (@DainaMiddleton) April 28, 2016





Sonia Carreno @iabcanada on growth of social:


"Social media ads brought in $10.9 billion in 2015, up 55% from 2014." 🙌🏽 #MarinExecSummitNYC

— Marin Software (@MarinSoftware) April 28, 2016




Missy Schnurstein of @Yahoo: "60% of conversions now take place on mobile." #MarinExecSummitNYC pic.twitter.com/gI46saAyj2 — Marin Software (@MarinSoftware) April 28, 2016





Our sommelier-lead wine and cheese tasting has begun! #MarinExecutiveSummitNYC pic.twitter.com/JA2G6iYusW


— Marin Software (@MarinSoftware) April 28, 2016




Thanks to our fabulous #MarinExecSummitNYC sponsor @Yahoo! pic.twitter.com/wf6NCK0Sop — Marin Software (@MarinSoftware) April 28, 2016





The "Good, The Bad and the Necessary", including ad blocking, delivered by @passageC @MarinSoftware Exec Summit NYC pic.twitter.com/MwB2vqz2ZQ


— David A. Yovanno (@DaveYovanno) April 28, 2016


“With Carousel Ads and Facebook Audience Network, we’re telling a captivating brand story, and more people who are likely to browse our products are clicking our ads.”
– Cheryl Degrasse / Sr. Director of Digital Media / American Eagle Outfitters

With a high volume of spend across two brands, four Facebook accounts, and two U.S. social teams operating on opposite coasts, retail brand American Eagle Outfitters (AEO) wanted to express the narrative of their brand values in a visually engaging way, to more emotionally appeal to their core audience primarily using mobile devices for shopping.

Since AEO manages two different brands with distinct audiences and creative, they needed an enterprise-class tool to achieve their advertising goals – and handle complexity – at scale.

American Eagle and Marin Social


Using Marin Social, AEO ran a mobile campaign with Facebook Carousel Ads and Facebook Audience Network (FAN).

Compared with Link Ads, the best results came from running Carousel Ads, achieving a 69% reduction in Cost per Conversion (Facebook Conversion Pixel). Including FAN, Facebook’s mobile-only network composed of publishers outside of Facebook, AEO benefited from a 73% reduction in Cost per Link Click compared with News Feed Desktop.

Thanks to Marin’s mass creator and bulk editor, AEO can now create tons of ads and ad combinations very quickly. With the Media Plan organizer, AEO can view metrics of all campaigns at a high level, avoiding the need to manually aggregate the data. Using one tool across Facebook, Instagram, and FAN significantly reduces the amount of time spent implementing and managing campaigns.

Learn more and see full results in our American Eagle case study.

Grad season is fast approaching, and college students are already applying for paid search roles in anticipation of their impending release into the “real world.” These eager newcomers can make great additions to SEM teams, provided they’re given the knowledge and resources they need to do that stellar work you expect.

However, paid search today is a considerably robust topic to teach someone. You’ll want to make sure you’re covering all bases, which is why Marin's Center of Excellence has come up with tips and tricks to bring these enthusiastic new team members up to speed.

As with any endeavor, you’ll need to start by asking yourself some questions to understand how to best tailor your approach:

  • What knowledge gaps exist for these new team members? Do they have any previous marketing experience, particularly in search?
  • What will be the “everyday life” for your new hires? What knowledge do they need to be successful in their new role?
  • How quickly do new hires need to fully assume their role? Can training be completed over a period of time?
  • Who’s involved in the training? Mentors? Managers? Other?
  • How will training content be developed and maintained?
  • Does it make sense to invest in online courses or outside consultants to conduct the trainings?
  • What methods will you use to keep participants engaged and accountable throughout the training?
  • How will you assess the success of the trainings? How will you assess the competency of participants post-training?
  • Are there any unique processes or strategies your company uses that team members need to understand?


The next step is to create your program for bringing these new hires up to speed. Use your answers to the questions above to decide how to best structure your program. In addition to developing clear and helpful content, establish how that content will be delivered (Will you host training sessions? Require self-study?), how participants will be assessed, and more.

We’ve created a quick breakdown of what you’ll need to do to prepare for these trainings, along with our suggestions.

Structure


New hires often inherit accounts from other account managers without much context. Understanding why an account is structured a certain way is imperative when deciding how to perform tests or when to make changes.

Those new to the industry may not understand things like segmenting match types or remarketing to specific groups of people differently if this isn’t previously explained. Keeping a record of tests and strategy for an account can be extremely valuable to a new account manager.

Workflows


Recent college grads hired to a paid search team will often perform the day-to-day tasks involved with campaign management, such as writing ad copy for testing, negative keyword expansion, and more. For every workflow, it’s also important that new hires understand the impact these tasks can have on performance.

Strategy


There are many strategies that account managers use to meet client goals within PPC campaigns. It’s important to inform new hires not only of the goals for the accounts they’ll manage, but of various methods they can use to meet those goals.

Technical


Make sure new hires have an understanding of how tracking works fundamentally, as well as the manner in which tracking conversions and revenue functions in your accounts. New hires will also need to learn how to identify and resolve discrepancies within your data, to ensure they’re able to make intelligent strategic decisions in the accounts they manage.

Although recent grads may not spend a lot of time performing deep-dive analysis within accounts, it can be helpful for them to acquire these skills early on in their careers. Bringing new hires up to speed can be a rewarding experience, but it can also be time-consuming!

At Marin, our Center of Excellence is available to develop and provide custom workshops to ensure your new hires are brought up to speed without taking up your limited bandwidth. If you’re a Marin customer and would like to learn more about this offering, reach out to your account representative!

The Publisher Spotlight is a series where we introduce premium publishers who are using Partner Connect to develop business relationships with relevant and interested advertisers. In this post, we spoke with Kirk Ciarrocchi, Paid Search Marketing Manager at The Sharper Image, an American brand that offers consumers home electronics, air purifiers, gifts and other high-tech lifestyle products.

Where people find creative gifts for all occasions



The Sharper Image is the online place to go for cutting edge gadgets and electronics, as well as luxury home and lifestyle products. Our unique products add style and comfort to any home and also make great gifts for Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, birthdays, weddings, and the holidays. No matter what the occasion is, our customers visit our website to find original and creative gifts. Our top categories include drones, hover boards, air purifiers, massage chairs, audio and sound, travel accessories, and sleep solutions.

With over 500,000 unique visitors per month and over 3 million unique visitors during the November–December holiday season, our website reflects the popularity of our brand.

The Sharper Image audience is made up of avid and
active shoppers



Our users tend to be very affluent, are not price-sensitive, and are consistently active shoppers. As far as connecting with complementary partners goes, we’ve done similar strategies with our catalog mailing lists, and found a strong connection between our customers and the customers of other luxury living brands.

For instance, we’ve partnered with brands offering goods and services such as wine subscriptions, travel merchandise, performance bicycles, finance and insurance, and home décor. We think that our customer base would be a great fit with a number of different types of retailers.

Other important stats to note are that 91% of our users live in the United States, with a 50/50 split between males and females. Additionally, 92% of our users are over the age of 25, and 72% are over the age of 35.

How did you learn about Partner Connect?



In developing a more advanced display strategy, our Marin team recommended Partner Connect as a way to share and find highly qualified and targeted audiences. After finding huge success with Marin in our search efforts, being able to leverage Marin in other areas seemed like a no-brainer because we’ve already proven that the technology works, and works well.

What goals are you looking to achieve with
Partner Connect?



We’d love to be able to share our data with other non-competing brands. While benefiting our partners, we hope to learn even more about our customers and their interests.

Interested in targeting The Sharper Image’s audience? Learn more about audience extension with Partner Connect!

Howdy, Pard!

Saddle up your computer and get ready for the wildest quiz of your life. We’re pleased to announce the launch of the 8th annual Biggest Search Geek competition. Test your skills against thousands of SEM cowboys and cowgirls around the world.

We reckon this quiz is our hardest yet. Some of the questions are guaranteed to get you hoppin’ mad. One of you city slickers will be our winner and boy are you a lucky son of a gun, 'cause this year’s bounty is a trip to SMX Advanced in Seattle.

But wait, there’s more! You’ll also get to pick from an Apple Watch, Amazon Echo, or Microsoft Surface Pro 4.

Good luck, y’all! Oh, and just a friendly reminder - never squat with your spurs on!

What are you waiting for? Giddy up: http://biggestsearchgeek.com/

Thank you, Google! Your announcement of the Google Analytics 360 Suite is industry-wide confirmation that enterprise level marketing tools are necessary in order to get the most out of your advertising dollars. Of course, Marin Software has known this all along and believes marketers of all sizes can benefit from these tools.

All marketers want efficient ways to reach new and existing customers and to understand what works and what doesn’t. As Forrester Research reports: “Sophisticated marketers who use analytics platforms are 3X more likely to outperform their peers in achieving revenue goals.” Organizations need this kind of sophisticated software to enable marketing teams to align around goals that help them optimize, compete, and drive revenue.

Cross-publisher, Cross-channel, Cross-device


At Marin, our focus is providing the technology and data needed for demand and revenue generation based steadfastly on our customer’s goals. We enable customers to make holistic creative, bid and budget optimization decisions across their campaigns, all from the same integrated platform.

Besides integrating well with Google, we have extensive experience working with Yahoo, Bing, Baidu, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and many other leading partners, including 10 of the largest global exchanges. Our commitment remains the same - helping marketers reach their goals across publishers, across channels (search, social and display) and devices (desktop, tablet, mobile).

Accomplish Your Goals with 100% Transparency


Purpose-built to provide customers with complete transparency of campaign data and results, our mission aligns with Peter Drucker’s adage, “If you can’t measure it, you can’t manage it.” We provide digital marketers superlative cross-publisher data and measurement including:

  • Transparent reporting, bidding algorithms, and predictive modeling
  • Advertisers’ intent data for better targeting and ROAS
  • Cross-channel insights and metrics
  • The true cost of media
  • Data throughout the customer journey
  • Quality and viewability metrics
  • View-through or click-through attribution


Although Marin Software has had a legacy in search leadership, we’ve evolved our cross-publisher platform via industry-leading acquisitions to power digital marketing campaigns for the world's biggest brands and agencies. We look forward to continuing to provide our customers with the tools and insights to profitably compete and reach their goals.

This month marks our 10-year anniversary – a decade of phenomenal growth, increasing revenue, and exceptional performance for our customers.

To celebrate, we put together a graphic highlighting just how far we’ve come, and all the things that make us the leading cross-channel performance advertising platform. Thanks for being on this journey with us!

Click the image to see the full poster.

10-year-anniversary-infographic-36x48-non-press

“It makes my job a lot easier, and now I don’t have to spend all day combing through spreadsheet after spreadsheet, trying to figure out where a booking value came from because it’s nowhere in
my system.”

– Kevin High / Digital Marketing Manager, IBC Hotels

IBC Hotels had a retargeting problem. Not only were they unable to easily attribute conversions – they were having a hard time even implementing their existing solution’s dynamic tracking code, and considered their vendor’s service team “unknowledgeable and nonexistent.”

IBC Hotels prides itself in introducing travelers to unique, locally owned hotels all over the world. Since IBC makes commission on each acquired booking, it’s crucial for them to accurately attribute the source of their conversions and revenue.

If they were going to lower cost and increase ROI, they needed a platform that would make their jobs easier, not more burdensome and clunky.

Enter Marin Display


IBC implemented Marin Display – with its Site Tracking Tag – to build audiences for retargeting across channels and devices. IBC found Marin Display’s tracking solution worked flawlessly and was easier to implement than their previous retargeting solution.

The Site Tracking Tag allowed IBC to automatically collect important information such as order ID and revenue, and to easily attribute conversions. IBC could then effortlessly access this data and
export it.

From here, they were able to optimize their retargeting funnel, attribute conversions accurately back to their own internal reporting, and ultimately lower CPM and improve ROI.

Learn more and see full results in our IBC Hotels case study.

The improvements to the Marin Social platform are almost complete, and will be fully available again at 11:00 pm PST on January 21, 2016.

The changes represent a major improvement to the data layer of the platform and are an important evolution for Marin in developing a more advanced big-data backend. These improvements will enable new and innovative features moving forward.

The upgrade was planned for and completed over the weekend of Jan 16-17. As the migration was completed, it was decided to address additional system maintenance based on testing results. The engineering team is currently wrapping up the QA process.

While some clients experienced intermittent access this week, ad serving was not interrupted and all campaigns continued to run. Marin account services teams have been in direct contact with clients to assist with changes during the maintenance window, and are providing guidance on making changes within the native tools, as necessary.

Another year has come and (almost) gone. There’s been tons of great momentum, change, and shifts in the world of digital advertising, and Marin Software was squarely in the eye of the storm! This storm, however, was more of a fun, wild ride than anything requiring an umbrella.

From important acquisitions and partnerships, to new ad types, to the ascendency of mobile, 2015 was truly a landmark year.

We hope your year was as great as ours. Here are some of the greatest hits and highlights, across Marin and digital advertising.

G2 Crowd, more popularly known as a “Yelp for business software,” released its Winter 2016 Cross-Channel Advertising results, and Marin’s on top!

G2 Crowd brings peer reviews to business software. Actual software users can review different products and share insights on marketing, CRM, e-commerce, and other types of solutions. Then, those looking for information on a specific product can use these first-hand reviews to help their software selection process. As anyone who uses Yelp knows, these insider tips are invaluable in making a final, informed purchasing decision.

The Process and the Results


Vendors were scored based on three ratings:

  • Overall Customer Satisfaction and Net Promoter Score (NPS) based on ratings by G2 Crowd users
  • Customer satisfaction with second-level product attributes based on user reviews
  • Popularity and statistical significance based on number of ratings and reviews received by G2 Crowd


Marin earned the highest overall G2 score – an average of satisfaction and market presence.

G2 Crowd - Q3 2015 Report


We’re Here for Our Customers


Our customers are truly the key to our success. To raise awareness of G2 Crowd and solicit reviews, we put the word out and entered anyone who completed a review – regardless of what they wrote – into a “schwag bag” drawing. Five lucky winners were picked, and they received Marin-exclusive items including clothing, a gift card, and major bragging rights (schwag brag?).

Here’s Daniel Morris, our Director of Product Marketing, choosing our victors. (Click the image for the "big reveal.")

g2crowd-winner



Here’s what a few of our reviewers noted:

Love seeing my revenue and profit each morning in 10 seconds
or less!


Marin is a true enterprise solution meant to scale SEM programs.


Marin makes it easy to make large scale account changes in a simple and straightforward way via bulk uploads and multiedits.


Other tech companies could take a lesson from Marin’s training.


The support provided by Marin has been the best of any partner that I have ever worked with.

If you’d like to partner with us to increase revenue, grow your audiences, and act on real-time business intelligence,
contact us today.

Marin Software recently participated in the E-Commerce Paris trade show, the largest cross-channel event in France. During the three-day event, we had the opportunity of presenting with our customers as guest speakers. One such opportunity was a workshop on 'the relevant criteria to choose your digital media buying platform'. Thibaut Vouloir, Acquisition Manager at financial services company Cofinoga, detailed the main things every agency or advertiser should care about when looking for a solution.

1. Independence



First off, he insisted that the provider must be independent from any media selling business. To guarantee a fair arbitrage of the bid recommendations on any campaign, the platform can’t be owned by a specific publisher, whoever that publisher may be. An independent platform helps advertisers to optimize their media investments on different channels, across search, social, and display.

2. Local Support



For Thibaut, it should be a given that he has access to a local and experienced service team – in his case, based in Paris who speaks French – who understands his needs and gathers his feedback to improve the product. One of his needs is the ability to integrate his DMP tracking system, with customized specifications. The strength of a local team is its capacity to contact the DMP solution, then work collaboratively with the customer to deliver a needs-based solution that drives results.

3. Flexible, Automated Bidding



In particular, Thibaut mentioned the absolute flexibility of Marin’s automated bidding tool considering the different objectives of Cofinoga’s financial products. Using the three different bidding strategies that Marin offers (position, CPA, and ROI) – within the same campaigns or across multiple campaigns and publishers – allows Cofinoga to effectively control and monitor the costs of acquisition. The time an advertiser saves with automated bidding can be reallocated to other tasks, such as A/B creative and landing page testing. “The keyword marketer is freed up from the repetitive task of manually changing bids every day,” said Thibaut.

To find out more about how Marin Software can help you achieve your cross-channel advertising goals, contact us today.

At EMEA Marin Masters in London on Wednesday, November 4th, we announced seven winners of our inaugural Marin Software EMEA Awards. We presented them with awards during a ceremony that brought together over 200 leading digital marketers and industry innovators to showcase the best examples of ad campaign optimization, audience engagement, and increased revenue.

The key criteria for our jury members included clear strategic thinking, innovation, effectiveness, and tangible results. We were delighted to see a diverse set of industries being represented at this first edition, which will hopefully announce many more. (Already interested in participating in the next one? Contact info_uk@marinsoftware.com).

This was a great opportunity to hear real-life industry scenarios and smart uses of technology, as well as our customers’ different objectives and the ingenious solutions they use to reach them.

Without keeping you in suspense for too long:

The winners are ... [drums rolling]

Search categories


  • Search & Health – twentysix for BMI Healthcare
  • Search & Travel – Manning Gottlieb OMD for Virgin Atlantic


[caption id="attachment_6795" align="alignnone" width="500"]

BMI TWENTY SIX AWARD-2MB

twentysix wins Search & Health[/caption]

Social categories


  • Social & Technology – Labelium for Sharalike
  • Social & Cosmetics – Mangostorm for Bio-Oil
  • Social & Sport – Labelium for Tough Mudder


[caption id="attachment_6796" align="alignnone" width="500"]

MangoStorm for Bio Oil Award-2MB

Mangostorm wins Social & Cosmetics[/caption]

The industry-respected judges had the difficult decision of awarding the overall Grand Prix trophy to one social and one search winner. The triumphant agencies were:

Grand Prix winners


  • Social Grand Prix – Labelium for Tough Mudder
  • Search Grand Prix – Manning Gottlieb OMD for Virgin Atlantic


Mourad Zeggari




Mourad Zeggari, Labelium Managing Director,
explained how the Tough Mudder social campaign achieved a 126% increase in clicks, 77% reduction in CPC, 29% increase in conversions, a CPA fall of 60%, and over 16m video views: Tough Mudder’s brand values of teamwork and camaraderie were integrated into our social ad campaign. With Marin Software and a strong and streamlined partnership focused on results, we were able to push the envelope and exceed all expectations. The fact that we increased video views by 16.3 million and saw exponential growth across all indicators clearly demonstrates that optimized social ad programs are a marketing imperative.

OMD Manning Gottlieb & Virgin Atlantic Airways-2MB



Upon receiving the Search Grand Prix award, Puneet Vaghela, Paid Search Account Director at Manning Gottlieb OMD, presented the agency’s award-winning campaign for Virgin Atlantic. Marin Software’s unique algorithm created a seasonality function that caused Virgin Atlantic’s revenue per booking to increase by 14%, conversion rate to increase by 30%, and overall revenue to increase by 20%.

A big thank you to our esteemed jury!

  • Jim Clark, Econsultancy
  • Gideon Spanier, Campaign
  • Stephen Chester, IAB
  • Luis Pedro Martinez, Bing


Marin-EMEA-Jury



For more information about the Marin Awards, please visit our dedicated website, and don’t hesitate to learn more through our case studies.

The evaluations are in and counted – and Marin Live is a resounding success!

What is Marin Live?



Marin Live is our 4-part training webinar series where our search experts teach our customers some of the platform’s best practices, tips, and tricks. Using Marin Live, our customers can take advantage of a convenient, hands-on learning model to get up and running fast. After just three rounds, our series has already trained over 600 customers.

Across all three webinar rounds, we’re rating at 4.5 out of 5 stars. Here are just a few things people are saying:

“These sessions are a great idea and I'm excited to attend more over the next few days!”

“Keep them coming!”

“These have been very helpful so far!”

Remaining Sessions for 2015



If you’re a Marin customer and haven’t joined us yet, the final two rounds of 2015 will be held the weeks of November 16th and December 7th.



If you’ve already joined us for Marin Live, thank you for helping make it a success. You can now listen to archives of the previous sessions.



At Marin, we’re constantly innovating to bring you the best solutions possible, and our training program is no exception. If you’re new to Marin and would like to learn more about how we can help you quickly grow audiences and revenue, contact us today.

We held our sixth annual Marin Masters San Francisco on Thursday, October 15th. Marin Masters is unique in that it allows us to bring together our customers and partners in one room to share ideas, talk about the latest digital marketing trends, and network.

Beyond the food and drinks, there was a lot on offer. Here are my top three takeaways from the event and some of my favorite tweets.

1. Build audiences of new users who behave like
     your converted customers



One of the new features we were excited to preview at Masters is our version of lookalike targeting. For those of you unfamiliar with Facebook’s Lookalike Audiences, it allows advertisers to find new customers by uploading their own customer data, and having Facebook identify other people who might be similar to your customers.

Marin’s version of lookalike targeting will act much in the same way, but will let you develop these lookalikes using data across search, social, and display. Maximizing the data from your first-party audiences is key to expanding your audiences and, in turn, seeing a high ROI.

2. The forward thinking marketer is blending the
     old and new to drive results with audience-
     centric marketing



It’s easy enough to understand that not everyone is the same, but in this data-driven day and age the keyword has in many ways replaced the customer. Cameron Urry, a customer and speaker from Partner Fusion, suggested we continually ask ourselves the question, “Am I truly customer focused?” Though the days of Mad Men are long behind us, we still need copy and content to resonate at an individual level. Campaigns should be set appropriately to target or reengage, and the customer must be supported in their buying process across search, social, email, website optimization, content, and SEO.

3. In digital advertising, the biggest opportunities
     are in the smallest moments



Joseph Corral from Google shared five key moment types digital advertisers need to worry about when addressing consumers:

  • I-want-to-watch-what-I’m-into moments: the moment when someone is looking to explore their passions and be entertained through engaging content.
  • I-want-to-know-moments: this is the moment when someone is exploring or researching, but not yet in purchase mode.
  • I-want-to-go-moments: this is the moment when people are looking for a local business or are considering buying a product at a local store. Being a contender means getting your physical business into their consideration in that moment.
  • I-want-to-do-moments: These moments may come before or after the purchase. Either way, these are “how to” moments when people want help getting things done or trying something new. Making the right content available is key.
  • I-want-to-buy-moments: Someone is ready to make a purchase and may need help deciding what or how to buy. You can’t assume they’ll seek you out; you have to be there with the right information to seal the deal.


We had some great tweets happening during the event, and here are a few of my favorite.

Excited to welcome our customers, speakers, & partners to Marin Masters SF today. Follow the action! #MarinMasters pic.twitter.com/KR00JZs1fX

— Marin Software (@MarinSoftware) October 15, 2015




#Marinmasters #photoboothmasters #symantecSEM pic.twitter.com/wbALDNVama

— Rachel Eastwood (@EsteMadera32) October 16, 2015




What the hell? I really won? Yeeeeeee #marinmasters #ilovemarin #blessedby digitaljesus pic.twitter.com/LduLBDK7JQ

— Michael Louie (@mikelouie) October 16, 2015





Beautiful venue, favorite painting. #terragallery #marinmasters pic.twitter.com/jPSFp22Ovm

— Rachel Lim (@aralim) October 15, 2015




Break time at #marinmasters leading to productive conversations by marinsoftware pic.twitter.com/2qYpTCgH4c

— gia (@nottinbutaig) October 16, 2015




At #marinmasters feeling underdressed. Everyone is in button ups and I'm in a dashboard confessional t shirt oops

— Michael Louie (@mikelouie) October 15, 2015



(Hands down, Dashboard Confessional t-shirts are always welcome at any Marin event.)

According to Time Warner, 65% of people with a smartphone and tablet are likely to use social media while watching TV. From tweeting along during The Voice, to posting game-day Facebook statuses while watching our favorite teams, social media is now a virtual living room.

So what can digital advertisers do to capitalize on these multi-screen habits?

We’re excited to announce TV Sync, a powerful solution that allows advertisers to automatically activate their social ads based on customizable offline events including television flight schedules, live programming, weather changes, or sporting events – all in real-time. By synchronizing social media and TV advertising efforts, marketers can amplify reach and drive consumer engagement across screens.

TY Sync is made possible through Marin’s premier social partnership with TVTY, the leading provider of real-time contextual data. As TVTY’s preferred social advertising platform, Marin can now help advertisers run contextually targeted advertising campaigns on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter using television signals from over 400 national and local channels, across 25 countries in North America, EMEA, and Australia.

TV Sync unleashes a multitude of possibilities for social advertisers. Consider some examples.

Extend your advertising message across screens



Running TV commercials? Use TV Sync to trigger your social ads immediately as your commercials air, reinforcing the message and increasing your impact with a multi-screen presence.

Counter your competitor’s TV commercials



As soon as your competitor’s commercials appear on TV, counter them by launching social ads in real-time. This is a great way to stay top of mind and boost mindshare.

Improve targeting and relevance with weather and sports



Trigger your social ads according to weather status or key sporting events for a timely, optimized, and personalized campaign that strikes a chord with your audience. For example, during snow-filled winters, travel advertisers can target users with ads to tropical locations.

Drive engagement during live or scheduled TV programs



TV Sync can help you advertise your auto brand during an episode of Top Gear, or launch social ads for your beauty brand during the red carpet at the Oscars. Aligning your ads with specific programming in this way creates a highly targeted and relevant ad experience.

TV Sync is immediately available for Marin Social customers, and we’ve already seen some exciting use cases and positive results. If you’re interested, don’t hesitate to get in touch.

The holidays are a busy time of year for retail advertisers. Outside of work, their lives are packed with relatives, shopping, menu planning, and social events. Add launching holiday promotions, bid management, and budgeting to the agenda and they have an even longer to-do list in the middle of an already stressful holiday season.


To help our retail advertising customers succeed during the critical holiday shopping season, we’re happy to introduce Marin’s Center of Excellence. This is a new division of the Marin Customer Success team that combines marketing expertise and mastery of the Marin platform to help grow your business. The team provides consulting and tailored offerings for Marin customers to address business needs and help them get the most out of the platform.


While consumers are editing their shopping lists in October, you’re editing keyword lists and writing endless variations of holiday ad copy. And, if you’re asking yourself, “What am I missing?” or “How can I better optimize this?”, the Marin Center of Excellence team is here to help you through these and other common challenges.


Having managed campaigns themselves once upon a time, the team has compiled a list of step-by-step recommendations to keep handy as holiday promotions begin to kick off in the coming weeks.



Step 1: Prepare Your Campaigns for Success by Leveraging Key Retail-Focused Marin Capabilities


Start by loading holiday focused objects into Marin early (e.g., keywords, creatives, sitelinks, and mobile-preferred creatives) and keep them paused until you’re ready to launch. This will allow enough time for creatives to go through review on the publisher’s side, for you to submit any exemption requests, etc. Don’t wait until the last minute or you risk forgetting important objects (like sitelinks!) and hitting policy violations.


In addition, make sure you have the necessary Scheduled Actions configured for your holiday-themed campaigns and creatives. Scheduled Actions are essential during promotions and sales and help you take back those long holiday hours by automating the pausing and activation of select campaigns and creatives. If you know that certain days or weeks see an increase in traffic, set up rules so you’re always showing top-performing ads at the most opportune times.


Marin Dimensions are another great time-saving tool. For example, if you have different promotions for Black Friday and Cyber Monday, tag them with a Dimension. Once tagged, you can quickly filter for those objects tagged with a “Black Friday” dimension to pause them and take the same steps to resume your Cyber Monday ads. This workflow works great for those time-sensitive campaigns you’ll be switching on and off across publishers.


Finally, you should consider an account audit ahead of the holiday. This will ensure you have an account structure in line with best practices, help identify specific performance issues, and allow enough time to prioritize any issues requiring implementation. The Center of Excellence is offering holiday focused account audits to improve account performance and better optimize your program this holiday season. Contact your Marin account representative for more details.



Step 2: Review Your Bidding Strategy and Objectives


In anticipation of the expected increase in traffic and competition, the Center of Excellence recommends setting up a schedule for any bid changes that need to occur throughout the holiday season. Take a look at your historical data for previous years. Do you notice a year over year rise in historical CPCs? Did traffic increase significantly? Pair this data with your goals to set up an ad scheduling or boost schedule.


These two features allow you to make faster adjustments to bids without making drastic changes to your overall bidding strategy (by changing folder targets) that could prompt unwanted results. If you want a little help crunching those numbers, the Center of Excellence is offering a Holiday Bidding and Boost consultation tailored specifically to your program that works in tandem with our bidding algorithm.



Step 3: Closely Monitor Performance Throughout the Holiday Season


Marin offers an easy way to set up and schedule automated email alerts to assist you with monitoring account activity during the holidays. The Center of Excellence recommends creating email alerts for the following:




  • Day over day cost changes


  • Sync errors for creatives/keywords


  • Average position threshold


  • Objects missing tracking


  • Creatives status = disapproved


If you manage multiple accounts in the platform, try setting up an All Clients report to review cross-client performance data. For example, set up a campaign performance report across all your clients to eliminate having to log into each Marin client account. Hint: Creating alerts across client accounts will save you time, which can be spent enjoying your holidays!



Bonus Time Saving Tips from our Top Center of Excellence Consultants!



  • If you’re a client that has many different publisher accounts within many different Marin accounts, utilize Marin’s cross-client bulk sheet feature, so you can create everything with one file rather than having to organize and upload many different bulk sheets.


  • If you plan to use ad scheduling to help manage bidding this holiday season, set this up in Marin using the multi-edit feature, which will allow you to set your schedule across many campaigns or ad groups at one time, rather than individually.


  • Prior to making changes for holiday bidding, download a report of all your current keyword bids with the columns you would need for a keyword bulk upload. Use this report to upload these same bids into the application after the holiday season is over and more quickly return to expected levels of performance and traffic.


  • When creating a scheduled report or alert, take an extra 10 seconds and also create a saved view for those same columns and filters. This way, if an alert or performance report merits investigation, you can retrieve the corresponding saved view to pull this up in the application immediately.


  • Tag all of your holiday objects in Marin using a Dimension. This will make it easier to apply setting changes and scheduled actions at scale so you can get back to family and fun!

It’s good strategy to periodically review your retargeting campaigns to make sure you’re hitting your volume and performance goals. An important part of that is setting the right lookback window for each of your audiences.

This post discusses lookback windows, why they’re important, and how to set or change them in Marin Display.

What is a lookback window?



A lookback window tells Marin Display how far back in time to look in an audience to retarget users. When you create a new audience, Marin Display will automatically start adding visitors to it as soon as they start hitting the pages you’ve chosen. But what if you only want to retarget visitors in this audience for 30 days? Set your lookback window to 30 days and you’ll retarget them up to that number.

Why are lookback windows important?



Lookback windows play a substantial role in your campaign’s impression volume and spend, as well as performance metrics like click-through rates (CTR), cost-per-click (CPC), and adjusted cost-per-acquisition (aCPA).

If you’d like to increase your campaign’s reach, consider lengthening your lookback windows. That’ll allow you to retarget your audience for greater lengths of time and increase your impression volume. However, keep in mind that your CTR may start to drop if you set too long of a window.

If your campaign’s reach is limited by your budget – or if you’d just like to give a boost to your CTR, CPC, or aCPA numbers – consider shortening your lookback windows. This will eliminate impressions you’re serving to your most distant visitors. As you free up budget to retarget your most recent and engaged visitors, you should begin to see more clicks and conversions in your campaigns.

How do I set my lookback windows?



When creating or editing a campaign, your first task is to select the audiences you’d like to retarget, and set your lookback windows for each audience. In the box labeled “Targeting”, look for the “Lookback Window” fields and enter a value for each audience you’d like to target or exclude:

LookbackWindow



You can set lookback windows for a specific number of hours, days, or months. If you’re new to retargeting, or have recently started retargeting a brand new audience, we recommend starting with a window between 30 and 60 days to get a feel for performance.

Lookback windows work for exclusions, too. In the example above, we’ve created a cart abandonment campaign that excludes customers who’ve made purchases. If you’d like to exclude your customers from your campaign for a specific amount of time before potentially retargeting them for repeat purchases, you can use a lookback window to achieve that goal.

For more information on lookback windows and campaign setup, check out our knowledge base.

If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to our Customer Success Team. If you’re new to Marin Display, try it for free and get a $100 credit toward your first retargeting campaign.



The countdown for the holiday season is on – which means now’s the perfect time to review your retargeting strategies and adjust accordingly. To ensure your retargeting campaigns are delivering the right message to the right audience, audience segmenting is essential.

This post covers audience segmentation and the types of audiences you should have in your holiday campaign.
Identify Target Groups
Using your visitor intent data, segment your visitors into several groups, depending on the page they’ve visited.



  • Home page
  • Category page(s)
  • Product page(s)
  • Add to cart
  • Add to wish list
  • Cart page
  • Checkout page
  • Confirmation page (converted)
  • Sign-in / Login page



Set Up Campaigns Based on Intent


Once you’ve segmented your visitors this way, set up a number of high intent and low intent retargeting campaigns. Each campaign should have specific messaging and creative for the intended audience.

High Intent: Cart Abandonment

To set up a Cart Abandonment campaign, target users who’ve viewed the cart page but haven’t completed the checkout steps. With this campaign type, you can advertise a special holiday discount code or free shipping to get visitors to complete their purchase.

Low Intent: General Branding and Awareness

A General Branding campaign targets users who’ve visited your site but bounced off the home page. So, target the home page audience and exclude all other audiences.

Medium to High Intent: Add to wish list

This unique campaign type is one you can have during the holiday season to spread general brand awareness, or to target users with dynamic ads based on the products they’ve added to their wish list.

Important note: When setting up any of the above campaigns, always exclude users who’ve already converted. This’ll prevent you from spending your budget on users who’ve already made their purchase and may no longer be a good fit for the campaign.

Audience segmentation is key to having impactful campaigns and is the foundation to retargeting success. The above campaigns are just a few examples of what you can create with segmented audiences.

If you’re new to Marin Display, try it for free and get a $100 credit toward your first retargeting campaign.

In the old days of advertising, the name of the game was reach and frequency. Brands preferred mass media vehicles like television and radio, because they were the easiest means to reach large audiences and build brand awareness. Obviously, this meant the most effective advertising campaigns were dominated by the biggest brands with the largest marketing budgets.

If you’ve been reading our blog then you don’t need to be sold on the ways retargeting can help your business. However, putting everything together – building audiences, managing campaigns, optimizing performance, etc. – can sometimes feel overwhelming. This is especially true when retargeting is just one of the many marketing strategies that you focus on.

To help you out, we’ve teamed up with HubSpot, the world’s leading inbound and sales marketing platform, to bring you a free eBook, titled The Beginner’s Guide to Retargeting. In addition to providing context on the types of retargeting and the different ways it can help your business, we’ve collected some of our favorite tips and best practices for getting started, running your campaigns, creating good ads, and measuring and optimizing your performance.

Download the free eBook now and start learning how to use retargeting to increase leads and traffic today.

A couple months ago, we announced a partnership with HubSpot. We’ve since been helping joint HubSpot and Perfect Audience customers connect their inbound and outbound marketing efforts more seamlessly. By automatically building retargeting lists based on HubSpot landing pages and Smart Lists, we’ve made it incredibly simple for HubSpot customers to build targeted, intelligent retargeting campaigns that help give more legs to their inbound marketing tactics.

Now, we’re taking it a step further. At the INBOUND 2015 Conference, HubSpot announced the launch of HubSpot Connect. We’re proud to have been introduced as a launch partner, and the only retargeting solution amongst their network of partners.

What Marketers Expect – A Wizard Behind the Curtain



Today, marketers expect to interact as one cohesive company that shares data and customer information across departmental lines. They don’t think about the different departments they’re interacting with or who’s responsible for what. Instead, they have the expectation that everyone in a company is able to work together to solve customer problems quickly and effectively.

Taking this even further – marketers are looking for ways to optimize their campaigns and reach the right audiences at the right time. For many HubSpot customers, though, outbound advertising and retargeting are new. It can be challenging figuring out how to set up the right types of campaigns, develop good creative, and determine how much to spend on your marketing efforts.

Because of the Perfect Audience and HubSpot partnership, all of this is now a lot easier. By creating audiences automatically from your landing page and Smart Lists, you can start your marketing efforts by targeting the audiences that are most valuable to you. From there, you can gradually test new campaign ideas by tagging the rest of your site and creating new audiences. So, not only do you have a cohesive, automated marketing experience – you’re making it work even more for you, to grow your audience and achieve new and better outcomes.

A Strong and Growing Partnership, Built for Results



If you’re a HubSpot customer who uses Perfect Audience, make sure to try the integration and let us know what you think about how we can make it better. We’ve already received a lot of great feedback and will continue working on strengthening our partnership.

If you’re reading this from HubSpot’s INBOUND 2015 conference, stop by and say hello!

In the obituary for Adobe Flash, September 1, 2015 will stand out as the day Google felled Adobe Flash with a mortal wound. As was originally reported in the Wall Street Journal, Google announced that its Chrome browser will block Internet ads that use Adobe Flash technology. With Chrome holding 60%+ market share, this essentially means Flash has become exceedingly irrelevant for advertisers.

A Lot of Us Saw This Coming



The move to a Flashless future shouldn’t come as a surprise to advertisers. The increasing focus on mobile – and Flash’s non-existence on that platform – means that many advertisers are already migrating their rich media creative to be built using HTML5, in order to maximize efficiency and reuse creative assets across their desktop and mobile ad campaigns. Other trends like YouTube ditching Flash for an HTML5 player also helped marshal that change along for desktop rich media advertisers.

What If Your Media’s Still Flash-Based?



However, not everyone’s updated all their creative assets, so this switch will have an impact for some advertisers, at least in the short-term. Here are a few immediate recommendations for how to reduce the short-term impact while you rebuild new HTML5 rich media creative:

  • If you haven’t already, upload static or animated GIF versions of your Flash ads, so there’s a suitable replacement that shows when the Flash ad doesn’t display.
  • Reduce spend on campaigns featuring Flash ads.
  • Although it’s ideal to recreate HTML5 versions of your ads from scratch to ensure they render properly, in a pinch, consider Flash to HTML5 conversion tools.
  • If you need to run Flash ads, segment them out into a different campaign, and block Chrome. They’ll still display on Firefox, Internet Explorer, and Safari, at least for now.


Odds are the demise of Flash hasn’t impacted you as much as you’d expect, with all the headlines raised in the past couple days (incrementally so if you’re a Marin Display or Perfect Audience customer, as we’ve never been Flash ad proponents). But, hopefully these recommendations will help you minimize the repercussions while you update your ads.

“There are too many options! How do I know where to put my social advertising dollars?"

It's a common scenario that every marketer faces, but thankfully Instagram has made your decision a lot easier by establishing itself as a clear and effective option.

How did they do that, you ask? They made it easy in three main ways:

1. Easy Choice


Instagram is an easy choice for marketers because it’s proven itself through its authentic, highly engaged, and rapidly growing community. Consider the numbers….

  • Want to reach a lot of people? Instagram has over 300 million monthly active users.
  • Need to drive global engagement? Over 70% of Instagram’s users are located outside the US.
  • Looking for a platform to grow with your brand? Instagram is the fastest-growing major mobile property.
  • Seeking out a lucrative audience? 73% of Instagram’s users are 15-35, and year-over-year engagement is up 108%.


It’s a no-brainer. And not only does Instagram deserve your social advertising dollars, it also deserves your branding dollars. Think outside of specific channels, and consider the function Instagram could serve as part of your overall marketing program.

InstagramStats


2. Easy Start


Getting started with Instagram advertising is simple, thanks to some recent changes. You no longer need to sign an insertion order, and gone are the days of hefty spend minimums.

With the advent of the Instagram Ads API, you can now go through select Facebook Marketing Partners or agencies (like Marin!) to start advertising right away. This means fast onboarding and whatever level of spend you choose.

InstagramAds


3. Easy Management


How about actually managing your Instagram ads? Well, that’s easier than ever, too.

Consider the workflow in Marin Social, where you can manage, measure, optimize, and report on Instagram campaigns alongside Facebook and Twitter. You can also take advantage of advanced features that help you save time, reach the right audiences, gain better insights, and achieve your specific business goals on the network.


Instagram is also making changes to provide advertisers with a fairly seamless workflow. Just last week, they announced support for landscape and portrait formats. This has big implications for using the same creative across Facebook and Instagram, particularly when it comes to video.

Ready, Set, Go!


Have we inspired you to get started with Instagram advertising yet? Stay tuned for more best practice content to come, let us know if we can help, and good luck!

Sources: Check out Iconosquare for demographic statistics, eMarketer for engagement information, and Instagram for Business for platform data.

Do you spend your days creating and optimizing social marketing campaigns? Are you focused on ROI, CPC, CPM, CVR, CPLC, and a million other acronyms? Do you regularly find yourself on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or Instagram - all for work?

If so, you could be the 2015 Biggest Social Geek!

We’re looking for somebody who lives and breathes social media advertising. Test your social savvy by challenging yourself to our 20-question quiz, which launches today. You could win an all-expense-paid trip to SocialPro in Las Vegas, plus your choice of an Apple iPad Mini, Xbox One, or Sony PlayStation 4.

Ready to get started? Play Biggest Social Geek now!

Boost Media is excited to partner with Marin Software, the leading cross-channel performance advertising cloud. Through the complementary nature of the two platforms, Marin customers will now be able to leverage Boost Media’s curated marketplace of expert copywriters and testing technology to optimize creative across search, social, and display campaigns. The combination of Boost Media and Marin Software ensures the highest return on search marketing dollars and a scalable best of breed strategy.

Search results pages have become crowded collections of nearly identical ad creatives. Standing out in this crowd matters now more than ever. Consumers want more relevant and targeted communications from the brands they engage with and the current approach with search ad copy fails to deliver.

The biggest opportunity to increase your search campaign performance is through improving your search ad copy. Boost Media is the leading Creative Optimization Platform and works with leading enterprise brands to scale the sourcing, testing, and optimization of search ad copy.

Writing and optimizing ad copy is a challenge for many marketers due to scale, constrained resources, and lack of insight into what drives ROI. Boost Media offers a platform that combines the power of a curated marketplace of human writers and designers combined with a SaaS platform for automated insight and analysis. With the Boost Creative Optimization Suite, organizations can marry the natural creativity of individuals with the automation and efficiency of a cloud-based platform, to generate ad copy at scale.

AdCopy-BoostMedia



Download Boost Media’s Creative Optimization one sheet here to learn more about optimizing your ad creative.


About the Author


sarah

Sarah manages Content Marketing at Boost Media and leads a team of marketing professionals to drive revenue through complex B2B marketing campaigns in the ad tech industry. Prior to joining Boost, Sarah developed marketing and sales strategy at BNY Mellon, a top 10 private wealth management firm. In a former life, Sarah worked in journalism writing for magazines including Boston Magazine, The Improper Bostonian, and Luxury Travel. When she’s not writing engaging content, Sarah enjoys cooking, running, and yoga.

About Boost Media


Boost Media increases advertiser profitability by using a combination of humans and a proprietary software platform to drive increased ad relevance at scale. The Boost marketplace comprises over 1,000 expert copywriters and image optimizers who compete to provide a diverse array of perspectives. Boost’s proprietary software identifies opportunities for creative optimization and drives performance using a combination of workflow tools and algorithms. Headquartered in San Francisco, the Boost Media optimization platform provides fresh, performance-driven creative in 12 localized languages worldwide.

Click here to schedule a free demo of the Creative Optimization platform today.

One of the fastest-growing major mobile properties, Instagram is home to an engaged and authentic community of over 300 million users. Each day, they share an average of 70 million photos and give out 2.5 billion likes. But more than that, Instagram is a deeply meaningful part of their lives. Of Instagrammers aged 13-24, 53% credit the platform with helping them define who they are.


Instagram is a place to be visually creative, to find inspiration, and to share unique perspectives. And it’s also an exceptional opportunity for social advertisers. In fact, 68% of users aged 13-24 say they interact with brands regularly, either by looking at photos, liking content, following a brand, visiting its website, or engaging in some other way.


That’s why we’re so excited to announce that Marin Social is integrating with the Instagram Ads API, to extend our cross-channel and cross-publisher support to this growing mobile property.



Integrating with the Instagram Ads API


Since gaining access to the newly developed Instagram Ads API, our engineers have been busy building an integration. And now we’re pleased to be working with a handful of customers to test brand awareness and direct response campaigns.


One such advertiser, NET-A-PORTER, uses Instagram to promote fashion events with top industry influencers. Instagram has proven to be a powerful channel for building relationships with existing customers and reaching new audiences who are interested in luxury brands.


"The Instagram Ads API allows us to target a very specific European audience within 24 hours of our events,” said Helen McGee, Head of Marketing, International, NET-A-PORTER. “With Marin's support, we drove awareness of our brand, and are better able to share exceptional fashion content with our customers."



A Panoramic View of Social Performance


Marin Social support allows brands and agencies to easily create, test, and optimize their Instagram campaigns. Even better? Instagram campaigns can be managed conveniently alongside Facebook and Twitter, so advertisers gain valuable performance insights and management efficiencies across their entire advertising program.


We look forward to working with more advertisers once Instagram moves to their beta phase, so keep an eye out for future developments. Oh, and make sure to follow us on Instagram!



More Information


Instagram for Business
Instagram for Business Blog
Facebook IQ Study on Instagram

One of Marin Software’s big value propositions is our cross-publisher capabilities and our robust support for the world’s leading publishers. We work closely with Google, Yahoo, Yahoo Japan, Bing, Baidu, and Yandex to ensure we’re providing the latest features from each one, and that customers can easily see and compare performance across publishers within our platform. As an example, Marin was first to launch support for Yahoo! Gemini earlier this year. Now, we’re excited to announce that we’re taking our relationship to the next level as a Gemini Preferred Partner.

What is a Gemini Preferred Partner?


The Gemini Preferred Partner Program was created to bring advertisers, agencies, and technology partners together to find and develop innovative digital marketing solutions. According to Alex Mrazek, Senior Director, Partner Development, Yahoo, “Through a higher standard of Gemini product integration and client services, this program will drive advertiser performance, scale, and ROI.” Check out Yahoo’s new page for the program: https://advertising.yahoo.com/partners/Partners/Marin-Software/index.htm.

What does this mean for Marin?


Yahoo selected Marin as a launching member of the Gemini Preferred Partner Program, as Marin is an established industry leader and is equipped to offer Gemini advertisers a top of the line solution. As a Gemini Preferred Partner, Marin is committed to delivering the highest standard of technology integration with Yahoo and client services. Customers can count on Marin to provide the latest updates from Gemini, and offer the best in class service that we’re known for to help address any questions or issues.

An example of how Marin helps customers with Gemini is our recent launch of Cloner for Gemini. With Cloner, you can easily copy objects from your Google accounts into Yahoo Gemini, resulting in faster and easier onboarding. For more information on Cloner and other Gemini features, please contact us here: http://www.marinsoftware.com/contact-us.

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