Natalia Horst

Associate Director, PPC

Google Customer Match is Here! So What Does It Mean for Your Brand?

It was announced last week that the long-awaited Google Customer Match has launched! This is one of the biggest enhancements to ever hit Google AdWords, and at Rise, we can’t wait to start incorporating the feature within our clients’ search campaigns.

Google Customer Match enables brands to capitalize on first-party data collected within their client relationship management (CRM) platforms to more accurately and efficiently target customers through search, Gmail, and YouTube ads. As marketers, this means you’re able to deliver even more relevant and personalized messaging that reaches customers at the moments that matter.

As the digital world starts exploring Customer Match and understanding best practices for leveraging it, I wanted to share an overview and a few tips for getting started with the tool.

What is Customer Match?


According to Google, “Customer Match helps you strengthen connections with your known customer base and forge new relationships across three of the web’s most powerful platforms: YouTube, Gmail, and search.”

It was built upon the premise that brands know their customers best and have already gathered a wealth of information and historical data on them -- such as purchase history, behaviors, and interactions with offline campaigns.

Customer Match enables you to upload a list of email addresses, pulled from your CRM, and match those addresses to signed-in Google users. You can then develop and target messaging to those customer segments (similar to Google’s remarketing lists for search ads).


What does it mean for brands?

Previously, marketers were reliant on in-browser tracking to target individuals who had visited their web pages. While this cookies-driven capability enables you to build a personalized and targeted experience for your customers, Customer Match takes that experience one step farther.

Now, you are able to use your first party data to influence your messaging and target customer audience segments based on past online and offline behaviors across devices. This will result in more relevant ads that more accurately capture your customers’ individual needs, while providing more visibility into cross-device conversions. For Gmail and YouTube ads, Google is also able to generate an audience list of individuals with interests similar to your high-value customers. As a result, you’ll reach a much more qualified audience and be better able to streamline how you spend your marketing dollars.

Here are a few ideas as you start thinking about how to incorporate Customer Match into your campaigns:

  • Remarket to in-store purchasers with online messaging
  • Re-engage static or inactive users with specific deals
  • Re-engage users who bought during a specific time period (such as Mother’s Day)

How does it work?

Access Customer Match through your existing Google AdWords account. Once you upload your client email lists into your account, Google will then match the email addresses you provided with existing Google accounts and provide the match rate. This is also when you will be able to ask Google to generate a list of similar individuals to expand your reach. You are then able to select where you want to place your ads and whether you want to target the matched individuals with your campaign, or exclude them. The exclusion feature is especially handy if you are going to be running a lead generation campaign and you want to make sure your current customers are not being served those particular ads. There are a few Google-set limitations for this feature that marketers should note.

  • You are unable to upload more than 500,000 email addresses at a time.
  • The email addresses you provide must have come straight from a first-party source (not a purchased list).
  • Brands must provide opt-out links, as users can control which ads they see and opt out, mute, or block ads from individual advertisers.
  • Google Match will only work for those individuals logged into Google accounts that correspond with the provided email addresses.

For full details on setting up Customer Match within your AdWords account, visit this page from Google.


The bottom line?

This is a fantastic new product within Google AdWords that is definitely worth trying out. The possibilities for increasing awareness and lead generation, building customer loyalty, and meeting customers when they show intent to buy, are endless. We can’t wait to get started and learn more about the ins and outs, while delivering more personalized experiences for our clients’ customers.

Have questions or want to learn more about incorporating Customer Match into your AdWords campaigns? Reach out to Rise.

10/14/2015 at 12:00

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