Search Audience + Social Audience = Revenue $$$

Looking for new levers to pull? Then look no further. One of the beauties of digital marketing is the ability to create seamless cross channel campaigns. Depending on the volume of data your website is generating there is a vast array of tactics and methods available to target both new customers through prospecting or existing customers through retargeting. In this post I’m going to walk you through how to leverage a Facebook campaign audience on Google Search. Please note, I’m using this source as an example since it’s popular, but this tactic could easily be translated into other channels your business is utilizing.

So let’s say you have a top performing campaign on Facebook, you know the traffic for this campaign is highly valuable, and you’d like to see if that value could be realized with Google too. Here are some recommended steps you can take to do it:

Setup UTM’s

If it didn’t have a UTM, did it really happen? Well in this case if you don’t, it certainly won’t. So make sure you have UTM’s setup and capturing data for the campaigns you are wanting to leverage cross channel.

If you’ve never created a UTM before, here’s an example of what one could look like:

https://www.example.com?utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=spring_sale&utm_id=campaign_id_example

Need more help creating UTM’s? Use this awesome tool: Google’s campaign URL builder.

Google Analytics: Build An Audience

Once you’ve gotten these set up correctly, then you’ll then want to create your custom audiences. Now lots of people like to do this in their ad platform of choice, which is fine, but I prefer to do it in Google Analytics (GA) for the following reasons:

  1. The audience builder in GA has far more segmentation options available: Demos, Tech, Behaviour, Conditions etc.
  2. The audiences you create in GA can potentially be utilized across multiple sources connected to GA, i.e. Salesforce, GA, YouTube, Google Ads

Never created an audience in GA before? Well it’s pretty straight forward. 

Once you’ve opened Analytics navigate to Admin > Audience Definitions, then select Audiences. Then you’ll want to create the audience so click New Audience. (As shown below)

Once you’ve opened Analytics navigate to Admin > Audience Definitions, then select Audiences. Then you’ll want to create the audience so click New Audience. (As shown)

Then once you’ve clicked a new audience, under Audience Definition click Create New. 

Then once you’ve clicked a new audience, under Audience Definition click Create New.

Then you’ll see the Audience Builder, and you can finally utilize those glorious UTM’s you created earlier.

Then you’ll see the Audience Builder, and you can finally utilize those glorious UTM’s you created earlier.

To select your Facebook audience navigate to Traffic Sources (Highlighted above) then select your Medium. Typically if you click the box all the data that has been captured by GA for utm=medium will automatically show up:

To select your Facebook audience navigate to Traffic Sources (Highlighted above) then select your Medium. Typically if you click the box all the data that has been captured by GA for utm=medium will automatically show up:

Now if you just wanted to select all Facebook traffic then your work here is done. But if you want to get more granular with your targeting you can select the Facebook Campaign too, which potentially enables you to create more personalized ad copy and creative. It’s up to you just how granular you’d like to get with the data. But try to keep your audience size in mind too. Quantity + Quality.

Audience Data Continued…

As I’m sure you can see from accessing the audience builder there are a multitude of different ways you can slice and dice your data. If you’re just starting out I’d recommend checking out Google’s guide on how to Create and edit audiences, that should give you some additional context. 

Alternatively If you’re looking for some ideas on types of Remarketing Audiences to create, check this out.

Google Ads: Use Cases

So now that you’ve done all the hard work, how can you maximize your efforts? Here’s a list of use cases we recommend testing:

Google Remarketing

Wanting to create a remarketing campaign for your audience? Simply add your cross channel audience as a targeting layer to a new or existing campaign. Keep in mind that this will narrow all traffic to the specific audience, so ensure your keywords and ad copy are relevant. Here’s a step by step guide on how to set this up:

Go to Audiences > Edit Audience Segments

Go to Audiences > Edit Audience Segments

Choose whether you’d like to add the audience to an Ad Group or a Campaign, then you’ll be sent to the following page:

Choose whether you’d like to add the audience to an Ad Group or a Campaign, then you’ll be sent to the following page:
  1. Select Targeting, since Observation will be selected as default
  2. Then search for your desired audience and select, once selected hit save, and you are good to go.

Google Observation 

If you are unsure of how the audience will perform an excellent way to gather additional data is by simply adding the audience as Observation rather than Targeting. Doing this won’t affect performance at all, it will merely show you how this audience is performing with the selected Ad Group or Campaign. I’d recommend doing this with a range of different audiences to see how they perform. Then once you have enough data you can start to utilize Bid Adjustments.

Google Bid Adjustments 

This is one of the ways that you can utilize the data from your Observable audiences to improve the performance of your campaigns. Bid Adjustments enable you to either increase or decrease your bids for a specific audience traffic. To enable bid adjustments navigate to the Audiences page.

  1. Under Audience segments select “show table”
  2. Hover over the Audience segment/Campaign you’d like to add your bid adjustment to
  3. Enter the percentage amount and hit save 
1. Under Audience segments select “show table”
2. Hover over the Audience segment/Campaign you’d like to add your bid adjustment to
3. Enter the percentage amount and hit save

* Two things I would keep in mind when making bid adjustments:

  1. Like all decisions you make ensure that you have a significant amount of data before adding
  2. If you are going to make a bid adjustment ensure it’s at least 30%, anything less isn’t really going to make much of an impact

Dynamic Search Ad – Data Collection

If you can’t tell yet, we love data, here’s another sneaky way to collect more of it on your specific audience. Try creating a DSA Campaign using this audience to capture all related search terms. Why is this useful? You can effectively find out the types of search queries traffic from your specific audience is conducting that relates to content on your site. Important things to note:

  • Only recommend this approach for audiences that have distinct value for your site, the juice has to be worth the squeeze in terms of generating incremental keywords beyond what you already have active in your account.
  • This information could also potentially inform ad copy, sitelinks or call out extensions.
  • Could also be used for landing pages, if valuable traffic is searching for it, use it!

Not sure how to create a Dynamic Search Ad? Take a look at our excellent walkthrough here.

Final thoughts

As mentioned in the opening paragraph, like most things in digital you can translate what you’re doing in one channel to another, and in some cases you’d be foolish not to. Think LinkedIn campaigns, why not make the most out of those costly CPC’s? There are so many ways you can stretch the dollars you are spending on one channel in another, and your clients/employer will love you for it!

One thing to not lose sight of is whether the audience you are leveraging is relevant to the campaign. Don’t be blinded by that attractive audience size, if the audience isn’t right, it won’t work, and you’ll be wasting your time and effort in the process. Don’t increase your bids on audiences that aren’t working, and don’t use the same messaging from one audience to another. That would be defeating the purpose of what you’re looking to achieve: highly targeted messaging + high value traffic = $$$