You’ve probably heard the news by now…
In August, Google will remove similar audiences from all ad groups and campaigns, which means you’ll have to find another solution to replace this extremely efficient targeting feature.
Luckily, Chelsea So wrote a useful guide that should help you transition smoothly to a different, equally efficient strategy.
Pack your bags, it’s time to move…
First, take inventory of where you’re currently using similar audience segments. You’ll find this in the Audiences under the Shared Library.
From there, you can filter for similar use segments throughout your campaigns. Export that.
Second, use smart bidding and change to value-based tracking. This will help Google to switch to machine learning and improve its quality signals.
Third, use customer match to improve Google’s signals for search and optimized targeting.
The good news is, customer match lists are automatically included as a signal for smart bidding. Upload your high-quality customer match data to assist once audience segments are gone.
Fourth, test audience segments based on your data insights. Chelsea says you should create custom segments for users that searched your most profitable search queries – one for branded, and one for top performing non-branded search terms.
Use your data insights to find high-indexing and affinity segments for your first-party audience segments, then use it to create a new combined segment, and test!
Then, test optimized targeting for performance and audience expansion for each consideration. It’s best practice to add first-party data and expand slowly from there.
Finally, request access to beta to turn off demographics expansion. You can do this by contacting your Google rep.
Why bother? Because Google will ignore your demographic exclusions if you use video action campaigns with optimized targeting. Urgh…
Yes, it’s techy, but necessary. Chelsea also recommends you migrate to Google Analytics 4 so you can have a headstart when Universal Analytics sunsets.