google logo on a door
PHOTO: Claudio Toledo

Google shook up the digital advertising world this week when it announced it would rebrand its DoubleClick and AdWords products as part of sweeping reorganization of its digital ads platform. The two, along with Analytics 360, will now be known as Google Ads, Google Marketing Platform and Google Ad Manager. 

Highlights of Google Ad Platform Rebranding

Mountain View, Calif.-based Google shared an overview of its digital ad reorganization on its blog. Here are the highlights:

  • Google AdWords is being renamed as Google Ads. Google Ads will retain the current AdWords campaign features, as well as introduce new campaigns choices such as Smart campaigns, a simplified campaign for small business users.
  • DoubleClick display advertising will merge with Google Analytics 360 Suite to become Google Marketing Platform, a central interface on which marketers plan, buy, measure and optimize digital media and customer experiences. 
  • Google will also combine DoubleClick Bid manager, Audience Center and Campaign Manager into Display and Video 360. Available as part of the Google Marketing Platform, Display and Video 360 will provide creative media agencies a central interface to manage media campaigns effectively.
  • DoubleClick for Publishers and DoubleClick Ad Exchange are being merged into Google Ad Manager, a platform for publishers seeking to better manage programmatic ad content.
  • Even the level of support is being reorganized. Google also announced Google Marketing Platform Partners, a new community of Google Marketing Platform resources that replaces the Google Analytics Certified Partners and the DoubleClick Certified Marketing Partners programs.   

Related Article: Understanding Google AdWords Days to Conversion Metric and Notes

Why Rebrand AdWords Now?

All of these changes mark a watershed moment for digital advertising.  AdWords has evolved over its 18 years on the market as it responded to changes in both the technology world and to consumer behavior, driven mainly by the proliferation of mobile devices. The changes impacted the original mission for AdWords — enhancing advertising messages on search results and online text when selected keywords were used in a query. Mobile devices, social media and video added new ways to display advertising. While Google added new AdWords options to match these trends, it also meant the word “AdWords” had outlived its intent, as ads do not appear solely with a keyword.

Consolidation of the ad platforms allows Google to reinforce its advertising offers against the plethora of advertising options that have grown in scale and strength in the 18 years since AdWords was first released. Amazon, for example, introduced its own paid advertising meant to enhance its site traffic, aiming to compete with search engines like Google as a consumer starting point for product information. Amazon also just announced advertising options for Alexa, the voice query platform that supports its smart home device Echo.

Rearranging the ad platforms offers Google a chance to reinforce its advertising branding message, particularly as its portfolio of technology solutions, ranging from cloud to virtual reality compete against Amazon, Microsoft, Facebook and others.

Related Article: How Google's Chrome Ad-Blocker Could Change Digital Advertising

Goodbye Google AdWords, Hello Google Ads

More information is expected next month. Google announced a July 10 livestreaming event to cover more details for each new platform.  The livestream will also feature demonstrations and introduction of the aforementioned new Google Ad campaign options.    

Marketers may reminisce about the early days of Google AdWords, but the changes sparked by Google Ads will surely keep Google’s market share for search advertising in a strong position.