Measuring Brand Lift With Google Consumer Surveys

Monday, March 11, 2013 | 9:00 AM

A few weeks ago, Susan Wojcicki spoke at IAB about building an ads ecosystem for 2020.  There, she introduced a new tool, Brand Lift surveys in AdWords, that will help advertisers measure the brand impact of their display campaigns via surveys.  We wanted to provide a bit more detail about this new feature and how advertisers can begin to use it.

First, some context.  We've made good progress (through efforts to measure GRPs and viewable impressions) to help advertisers measure their brand campaigns, but many still rely on basic metrics like clicks and impressions.

Historically, if a brand wanted to see how its advertising campaign impacted things like consumersí purchase intent, brand awareness or brand favorability, it would have to wait weeks or months to conduct expensive survey research.

Brand Lift surveys in AdWords use the speed and scale of the web to help advertisers gain a better, more nuanced understanding of how their campaigns are performing.  Results are accurate, occur in real-time, and donít cost anything extra.

Advertisers will be able to set up and run Brand Lift surveys alongside their campaigns without any additional tagging, third-party set-up or fees, all from within AdWords.  Hereís how they work:
  • In AdWords, an advertiser designs a basic survey from a list of templatized questions about purchase intent, brand awareness, and other common categories.  
  • Then they launch their display or video campaign.  
  • Automatically, one group of users will see display ads from the advertiserís campaign, followed shortly afterwards by the survey.  A second, similar group will not be shown the ads, but will receive the same survey.  
  • Publishers are paid for displaying survey questions on their sites, which helps to fund content and services online.  
  • Google compares the aggregated and anonymous data from the two groups of respondents and gives it to advertisers to measure the impact of their campaigns.  
Brand Lift surveys are powered by Google Consumer Surveys, which launched in April 2012 and run across many partner sites, such as NY Daily News, SJ Mercury News, Bloomberg, YouTube and other publishers.  You may also see some anonymous sampling questions (like those asking your age range, gender or other demographic questions). Your responses are aggregated with other users' to help us show more relevant ads to users based on their interests and demographics.

Itís still early days, but weíre already seeing advertisers benefit from Brand Lift Surveys.  Brand Lift surveys are available to measure the impact of YouTube campaigns, and weíre looking forward to expanding this beta to many more brand advertisers (both display and video) in the coming weeks.

Posted by Paul McDonald, Product Manager, Google Consumer Surveys