In this week’s Digital Marketing Weekly, Google updates Customer Match so businesses with smaller access to email lists still have a chance to retarget customer’s with known addresses and phone numbers, snippets get longer, and is Facebook’s “Messenger Broadcast” to be or not to be?
Google Adwords Now Allows Advertisers to Use Phone Numbers and Email Addresses in Customer Match
Released in 2015, Google Customer Match let businesses upload email lists in order to retarget or exclude users from search and display ads. Now, Adwords advertisers can use home addresses and phone numbers for retargeting purposes.
Google uses the phone numbers and addresses, just as they do with email addresses, to match them with user-uploaded information in Google accounts. They’ll use hashed email addresses and phone numbers to match with Google’s own hashed strings, then uploaded to advertiser’s Customer Match lists.
Advertisers can then used matched data to target customers in search and display ads, as well as Google Shopping, Gmail, and Youtube. With the addition of address and phone number matching, businesses that don’t have large lists of email addresses can expand their retargeting options through first-party data.
To learn more, read Google’s help page here.
Google Increases Snippet Length in Search Results
Google has moved to allow for more descriptive snippets in order to help users understand how pages are related to their search queries before clicking the link. According to RankRanger, snippets have increased from 160 characters to nearly 230 characters. Here’s a chart demonstrating character growth:
Snippets are typically generated by meta descriptions and on-page content to match user search queries. Since not all snippets are expanded, it is not recommended to update meta description lengths to accommodate the expansion, since the content will most likely be pulled from the page itself.
The changes may impact click-through rates. More content on the SERP itself means more scrolling to get to lower ranking pages, possibly affecting impressions. If longer snippets end up being more enticing for the user, CTRs might be increased.
Facebook is Gearing Up to Release “Messenger Broadcast” for Businesses
Messenger Broadcast is a feature within the Messenger app that lets businesses send automated marketing messages to Facebook Messenger users. It is currently being tested and has not been released to the public yet.
The interface allows business to include a welcome message, title, subtitle, and call-to-action for the user to visit the website or prompt a bot, or initiate an automatic reply. Messages have to be sent to users who have already contacted the business in the past to reduce spam. If it is rolled out, the interface seems to indicate a limit on reach, and it is unclear whether the businesses can pay for more reach.
Facebook has been slow to monetize Messenger. Within the last few years, Facebook has introduced “click to message” ads in the Facebook News Feed to prompt users to initiate conversation with businesses, then allowing the user to receive Sponsored Messages. Facebook also implemented display ads for the Messenger inbox.
Though Messenger Broadcast is in the works, businesses should be wary. It may never be released, and by requiring users to message first, businesses may risk being seen as spammy. Ploys to get users to initiate contact as well as an influx of ads may alienate customers if seen as annoying.