Automation. We’ve all heard of it, but how many of us truly trust the systems to do exactly what they want or to do a better job than humans with minimal input?

This is especially true in digital marketing, with all of the ad platforms developing more in the automated space, think Performance Max from Google, Smart Performance Campaigns from TikTok. Since filming this there has also been a huge amount of press around Chat GPT.

For someone like me who has worked in digital since each Google Search Ad had one headline and two 35-character-long descriptions, when single keyword ad groups were all the rage, and when accounts could have hundreds, if not thousands, of campaigns, it can be difficult to fully embrace automation. What is certain, is that automation is here to stay, and it’s getting bigger and better, so if you’ve not already started testing then there’s no time like 2023.

While suppliers will tell you to set up certain types of campaigns with automated and broad targeting, it’s not always so simple. Especially if you have clients and accounts with a history of manual operations, the first stage is the bread and butter of all marketing: testing. We always recommend to set up a controlled A/B testing environment when launching anything new, whether that is creative, campaign types, keywords, audiences, etc.

By minimising the impact of external factors on campaigns during the test, this will better help you to analyse your results. The important thing is that you give your campaigns enough time for any automated systems to be able to learn and improve. It’s easy to see results after two days and want to turn everything off, however, as automation is here to stay, we recommend that you give it time.

From here, the aim should be to gradually expand your types of automation in line with performance results that work for your business or client and voila! You’ll start to see over time that the time spent managing individual aspects of your campaigns starts to reduce and that you can focus elsewhere. Don’t forget to check in on your campaigns though!

So while 2023 might not be the year to fully let go to automation, if you’re not there already then it’s a good place to start!



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