Bid Optimisation: The Future is here and it’s in Machine Learning

Bid Optimisation: The Future is here and it’s in Machine Learning

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

A proficient bid optimisation strategy is key to the success of any Paid Media Campaign.

The bids you place directly affect performance, deciding where your ads show, how visible they are, and ultimately the budgets allocated to each product or service.

There are now many “automated” tools and services on the market aimed at scaling this process, utilising data from multiple “signals” at a rate far greater than humanly possible.

Intelligent automation is paramount to DAC UK, forming the “core” of our Paid Media mission statement.

Our Mission Statement

Campaigns are managed with intelligent automation, diligent alerting systems & insightful machine learning techniques.

Leaving analysts time focused on creative research & high- level testing.

We have kept a close eye on the field’s development, so, for your entertainment, here is DAC London’s two cents.

Back in 2014, Google realised “Sibyl”, their first major system for large scale machine learning automated billing, left a lot to be desired.

Teething problems, together with the inability to effectively manage lower volume search terms, lead many account managers to leave automated billing out of their bid optimisation strategies.

Flash forward to 2017, and multiple search management platforms have realised their own bid optimisations processes, utilising an ever-growing list of “contextual signals”.

AdWords free option alone now includes over 10 contextual signals (Figure 1.1) optimising to 6 different KPIs (Figure 1.2).

This has resulted in stark improvements in performance, with retail clients practicing AdWords Bid strategies seeing 10% KPI improvements from 2016 to 2017 alone.

It no longer appears to be a question of if you should be using Bid Strategies, but which and how.

Figure 1.1

Figure 1.2

AdWords has become a completely acceptable platform for automated bid optimisation for the small to medium sized advertiser.

However, taking the decision to “give up” unique search term bids it not to be taken lightly. If this decision is made, implementing the most intelligent systems available should be seriously considered.

This will most likely involve implementing a 3rd party system, and balancing the increased performance delivered against the increased cost.

One 3rd party system used heavily at DAC  is DoubleClick Search. This has many advantages over AdWords free offering. Management platforms allow cross platform data utilisation, and this is where DoubleClick searches Bid Management offering excels.

The ability to optimise to conversions across multiple data sources and attribution models delivers maximum impact to your account.

You can find an example system provided by DoubleClick search below in Figure 1.3

The bid strategy market continues to evolve and everyone at DAC UK is waiting eagerly for inevitable next “game changing” beta.

Want to no more or discuss your new paid media strategy, please get in touch.