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PMG Digital Made for Humans

A Fool Proof Way to Schedule Paid Search Ads

3 MINUTE READ | December 8, 2016

A Fool Proof Way to Schedule Paid Search Ads

Among the many challenges that arise when working for a retail client during the holiday season, one of the most important is quickly scheduling and executing ad promotions effectively. While there are many ways to change and schedule ads across the various paid search platforms, most of which processes are very similar, the following is a guide for DoubleClick Search.

Labels make the world go round.  You can use labels to classify anything including campaigns, ad groups, ads and keywords. When scheduling ads for a promotion I have found that bulk upload sheets and “find and replace” functions do not always guarantee full proof scheduling.

Here are the steps for making ads and using labels:

  1. Filter for your evergreen ads and label them as such. You can segment by engine for more granular labeling or keep it high level and just label all of the ads “evergreen month“. Since evergreen creative is updated every few months it might be good to know the month the specific creative started running in the account.

  2. Download evergreen paid search ads. Open the excel file and dedupe by ad group id and campaign id to ensure that you have every campaign and ad group once.

  3. Delete the ids from the ad id column. Change the Action column to “create” and the Status column to “paused”.

  4. Input your new promotional ad copy in the correct lines. For example in the Google upload sheet for the Expanded Text Ad format you will most likely be replacing Ad Title 2 and Line 1.

  5. Label your ads in the label column. If your sheet does not include a label column, create it after the ad group column. For Black Friday and Cyber Monday I labeled my ads BF 16 and CM 16.

  6. Remove all the unnecessary columns that will cause errors and upload your sheet to DS3. Make sure the Status column is set to paused (step 3) unless you’d like the ads to be live upon submission.

Once everything has been uploaded and processed it’s time to schedule!

  1. Filter for the evergreen ads by label, select all, pause, at a later date. Schedule the evergreen ads to pause 30 minutes after the promotion ads are to go live. It is good to have overlap just in case something goes awry.

  2. Do the same and schedule them to resume, at a later date but this time 30 minutes before the promotion ads are to end.

  3. Repeat for the promotional ad copy using the label you assigned to the ads.

  4. You’re done! You can double check everything that has been scheduled in the “Scheduled Edits” section of DS3.

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Labels not only help with scheduling but they also help with reporting, bidding, filtering and other day to day tasks. The extra steps may seem unnecessary but at the end of the day it is a the sure fire way to schedule ads. Holiday is clutch and tis the season to make all the monies.


Posted by Rachel Siegmund

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