Create Image Display Ads Like a Boss (No Designer Required)
by Natalie Eagling, Account Manager, AIM
You’re probably already making use of Google’s Display Network (GDN) and seeing fantastic results. High volumes make it a really scalable solution and with the right bid amounts, can often be cheaper than the Search network.
The easiest way to scale to a new audience and increase the impression count, is to use a variety of ad formats. Standard text ads work surprisingly well on GDN, but if you’re serious about scaling, you need to create image ads too.
But here’s the catch. You don’t have a designer.
Or, perhaps you do have a designer, but on briefing in 10 or more different ad sizes, across 3 different test ideas you have (mental math: that’s 30 ads total), you find it’s going to take 3 weeks or more…
Either way there is no quick fix. And before you know it, your renewed PPC mojo has shriveled to nothing at the thought of rounds of amends, freelance design costs and the inevitable file size drama you’ll face when uploading your new ads. Au revoir “ready, fire, aim”.
You’ll stick with text ads, right?
Create Display Ads Using Google’s Image Ad Builder: No Designer Required
This is not a new tool, but it has come on significantly since it was launched many moons ago. So if, like me, you tried it and hated it (think: ugly, flashing gif ads circa 2009), it’s time to get back on that horse.
Let me talk you through the basics, and then I’ll show you the cool stuff (hang tight!
1.First, log in to your account, head to your GDN campaign, click on the “Ads” tab, and then select “+ Ad”, and click “Image Ad:
2. You’ll reach a screen which asks for you to paste in your link. Go ahead, Google will scan the page. Then click “Create an ad”.
3. Now you’ll be presented with a bunch of image ad options. Choose the one you like best, then click Select, then Edit.
AIM TIP: Often “ugly” wins over “pretty”. I have found personally that the best performing image ads are those which mainly consist of text, and no images.
4. You’ll see an editor with various fields like Headline and Description.
Change the copy to reflect the Ad copy you want to use.
AIM Tip: Always remember, “one step removed”. Take your best performing ad, and use this to create your image ad. You can test new ideas from this base-point.
5. Once your copy is up to scratch, click Done at the bottom.
6. Next, navigate to the top right and select “Preview all”
Here you will see all the versions of the ad you just created:
From here you can click “Save” in the top right corner, and your ad, in all its many sizes, will be live.
Nifty Tricks to Make Your Ads More Compelling
But, what if you don’t like the design? Perhaps you want to add something more creative, or you want to feature a free report of some kind to entice more sign ups?
Here are some nifty ways to create an ad with a little more va va voom…
1.Cheat the system: Get ideas from a different source
At step 1, when you come to getting ad image ideas from a website, enter in a different URL. Perhaps you have a microsite, a blog with a great image, or a free report which has great imagery and the colour you are looking for. Paste the address here and see what comes back…
2. Choose from multiple images used across your site (you might not even know some exist!)
When you are editing the ad, click the “Update image” drop down next to the Product image, and select “My site” at the bottom.
This brings you to a page which asks for your web address. Enter the URL you want to take images from, check the box, and click “Fetch from your site”. Now you can choose from a multitude of images available on that page.
3. Use your free report as lead bait
Using the same method we have been using above, this time use the image link of your free report. (Ours was saved on an Amazon server…) Et voila! An ad in multiple sizes featuring a compelling image of the free guide they can expect to land in their inboxes.
Hopefully this gives you some ideas and inspiration to go away and create a whole bunch of image ads using not only the landing page, but other resources like your report covers, even your editors photographs; the opportunities are endless.
Crucially, you really don’t need a designer to create image ads like a boss. And you’ll be surprised by how well the ads you create using this tool will perform. (We’re not saying Google could be biased towards their own ads. Well, we are actually.)
Until next time,
AIM Account Manager
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