What we learned about AI at Google Marketing Live.

In May, a few E&S team members joined our client partners and other marketing professionals at Google Marketing Live. During our time in Mountain View, CA, we learned all about new products and features coming to Google. 

The hot topic? Artificial intelligence. And yes, we lost count of how many times “AI” was said during the conference. Amidst the insightful breakout discussions, new product announcements and an exciting sit-down interview with Shaquille O’Neal, one resounding theme echoed: AI is the future.  

Here’s a recap of what we learned about how AI can seamlessly integrate into measurement and insights, creative and media strategies. 

AI for measurement and insights.

Quality data in. Quality insights out. To unlock the full power of AI, a durable measurement strategy is mandatory. What does that mean? It’s time to make sure more complicated metrics (like ROAS and other bottom-funnel signals) are always part of campaigns. This is even more important with the deprecation of Google third-party cookies looming in the future. We can help AI give us the predictive insights and trends we want see by taking these steps: 

  • Have a comprehensive tagging setup and conversion values in place. Unsure where to get started on measurement? Get step-by-step instructions through the beta Accelerate with Google.  
  • Implement enhanced conversions for web and leads to make sure your most important, first party data is being collected. Tap into Google’s new Ads Data Manager to simplify the process of using first-party data. 
  • Utilize GA4 to collect deeper user attribution insights. In the next few months, Google Analytics insight cards will be powered by generative AI to surface trends and significant changes in your data, offering explanations and recommendations.  

AI for creative. 

While the debate about if AI should be used for creative continues, new game-changing features and opportunities are being developed. AI has, and will continue to, decrease costs and make it easier for marketers to more quickly find creative inspiration, finalize production and complete real-time asset generation. Not sure how to use AI in creative? Here are a few ways to start: 

  • Harness generative AI tools for rapid creation and testing of versioned creative, including effortless resizing. In the coming weeks, you’ll be able to edit images — including product images from your Google Merchant Center feed — across Performance Max and other campaign types.  
  • Apply AI-generated recommendations under the new AI Essentials category provided in the Google ads platform to optimize creative and campaigns in real time. 
  • Get inspired during your next creative brainstorm by experimenting with the new AI Test Kitchen.  

AI for media.

As performance marketers, we’re always looking at data, making enhancements and personalizing our campaigns. AI presents an opportunity to elevate media optimization and personalization. We can maximize ROI when we: 

  • Adopt a full-funnel, AI-powered approach across the buyer’s journey, allowing campaigns time to flourish. 
  • Optimize campaigns to business goals to give AI the signals it needs to adjust campaigns and ensure profitability.  
  • Harness the dynamic duo of AI-powered search and Performance Max campaigns (or the Power Pair, as Google calls it) to drive conversions across Google’s ecosystem.

While AI can help enhance marketing efficacy and efficiency, it’s crucial to build a solid measurement foundation and provide the necessary inputs for optimal performance. As Google reminds us, AI is a tool, not a replacement for marketers.  

To learn more about the new and updated features coming to Google, check out the full recap of Google Marketing Live and watch on demand. Curious how our team already uses AI in Marketing? Read our thoughts

Leanne Prewitt

President & Chief Executive Officer

Shaped by her background in creative direction, Leanne leads the agency’s culture and creative vision and also oversees the operations that allow a team of marketing, design and media specialists to create powerful and effective work for their client partners.

Leanne began her professional career in New York City working for some of the nation’s leading agencies. In 2016, after a five-month sabbatical around the world, she returned to her hometown and joined Ervin & Smith. Her global perspective and expanded professional experience influence the work she does today.