Did Performance Max Save Google’s Ad Crown in 2023?

Looking back, Performance Max might have been Google’s saving grace. Over the past several years, Meta (formerly Facebook) has been steadily siphoning digital ad dollars away from Google. However, one game-changer emerged as the company’s saving grace – Performance Max.

Before Performance Max, acquiring new customers from Google was tough. You relied on non-branded keyword search, shopping ads, display banner ads, and YouTube. For anyone that tested these as stand-alone campaigns can share my pain.

The genius of Google was to combine all of these properties into one opaque campaign with the advertiser’s branded images, videos, ad copy, and let its world-class AI advertise across all of Google’s network. Maybe the real genius was the lack of reporting (kidding, sort of), but Performance Max does drive cheap CPCs (cost-per-clicks) and more importantly, sales.

The one distinction we notice for our clients is Performance Max works better for retailers who have a product feed versus lead-gen service businesses.

Not to say Meta doesn’t have challenges like their privacy fight with Apple, TikTok, and US Senators yelling at them, but I do find it interesting Meta came out with an AI ad product called Advantage+ which bears a striking resemblance to Google’s Performance Max.

One thing is for sure, this race will be interesting!

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