Last week, in part 2 of our 2022 paid search trends series, we focused on video ads and also how mobile gaming is an ad channel that many companies need to consider.
In this, the final instalment of our 2022 paid search trends series we will examine how brands need to be authentic, changes in local search and how other search engines actually exist!
Let’s “search” for some answers…
2022 Paid Search Trends – The Value of Authenticity & Action
While there is a big focus on AI and automation in digital marketing, consumers are demanding more human messaging from brands.
This is in line with demographic trends, specifically with “Gen Z”. We have spoken about the different outlook and values that Gen Z (or Zoomers) hold before in our O2O strategy series. But to summarize they want to be addressed as peers and interact with brands that they feel share their values. These values specifically are:
A brand has to be authentic in all of its messaging and in the experience it offers to potential customers. According to McKinsey, the “search for truth is at the root of all Generation Z’s behavior”.
But how can brands offer an authentic truth to these new consumers?
One way is influencer marketing. Brands typically use influencer marketing (and user generated content) to humanize their brands on social media. While this is effective, presenting an authentic brand needs more than just working with influencers. It’s here that a robust CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) policy can provide some real marketing wins for brands.
Actions speak louder than words. Brands that support sustainability initiatives and local charity initiatives have a human story they can tell to consumers right away. It’s authentic, as brands that move in these areas are backing up their messaging with real action. Telling positive stories about your brand can engender positive sentiment about your brand in the marketplace.
By highlighting the positive, authentic changes your brand has made people will be more motivated to engage with your brand. With local initiatives specifically, your brand can also attract local press this way. This will build a virtuous circle where your charity or sustainability efforts will bring tangible rewards.
If your brand can align with causes that align with it’s values, it can have a huge impact on your overall marketing messaging. Plus you will be doing something good for the world!
Actions You Can Take:
- Implement a CSR policy that is in line with your brand values
- Strong CSR policies can help you to build a community around your brand
- Back up your messaging with action
- Positive initiatives bring positive press coverage
- Local charity initiatives can build more local awareness of your brand through press coverage
2022 Paid Search Trends – Get Local…But Adapt To The New Normal
Paid local search advertising is not new. Brands that have stores with physical locations already know that it’s a marketing strategy “must have”. But changes are afoot…
The ongoing pandemic has changed how we live and work. According to MyMove, 15.9 million people in the U.S. filed change-of-address requests with the U.S. post office during February to July 2020. With more people working remotely some have felt the need to move out of the city into less crowded areas.
But brands need to embrace this huge behavioral shift with their local search advertising. Messaging needs to change to embrace a local “new normal”. This means offering better delivery options and fully implementing “click and collect” functionality on online storefronts, if your brand has a physical retail presence. By using optimized local messaging you can gain more customers who are looking for products “near them”. Better delivery and collection options give them more flexibility. With the pandemic rumbling on, local paid search advertising with a real local outlook will be a must for all online brands.
Actions You Can Take:
- Tailor your local search messaging for each location
- People are moving around more, think how your brand can solve the new needs they may have as a result of this
- Build a strong O2O Strategy with a local focus
2022 Paid Search Trends – Other Search Engines Are Available…
It is very easy to get bogged down just thinking about your Google Ads campaign. Google is by far the biggest player in search. But depending on which area you operate in you might be surprised by the results you can achieve by running digital ad campaigns on other search engines.
For example, in Thailand it is no surprise that Google is the top dog with a huge 98% of the search market. But you may be surprised to hear that Bing, Yandex and DuckDuckGo all attract small percentages of user queries in Thailand. So while you must put a focus on your Google paid search efforts, your brand may be missing out on potential customers in spaces that are less competitive. Big urban centers like Bangkok have large expat populations who may use search engines from their home country. If you can advertise on these platforms you may pay a lower CPA (cost per acquisition) than you do on Google.
There are some unique issues to advertising on other search engines that may make this difficult. For example Baidu, the Chinese search engine, is heavily regulated by the government. So it can be difficult for a brand outside China to meet all of Baidu’s regulatory requirements. If you have the budget, working with a local search marketing agency can help you with this process. They will also be able to help you localize your messaging so you can serve your content in different languages. You will also need help with translation if, for example, you are targeting Russian speakers in Bangkok via Yandex.
So while it is vital that you focus on Google Ads, do not neglect other search engines. There is value there if you can put in the extra effort.
Actions You Can Take:
- Look at how people search in the area you are operating in; you may be surprised by the amount of people who use search engines other than Google
- Work with a search marketing partner experienced with multilingual content and different search engines if you need to
- Some search engines, like Baidu, may require local search marketing partners in different countries
- Be sure to serve localized landing pages
Talk to MAQE
If you need help with your O2O strategy or adapting your messaging to different audiences, talk to MAQE. We have been helping companies around the world for a long time. So get in touch via firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to find out more.