Google Adwords’ Expanded Customer Match Tool Delivers More Targeting Options Than Ever

After years of what might have looked like stagnation, Google is addressing some of the biggest complaints about Google AdWords.

Digital marketers of all stripes were relieved to find the AdWords interface is growing more intuitive and just plain looks better.

Though this is a tremendous step forward, there’s even more to be happy about.

Google Adwords’ New Expanded Customer Match Tool

The more options you have for matching your content to your ideal audience, the easier it is to capture attention and win conversions. So, it’s no surprise that this is one of the most celebrated of the recent AdWords updates.

Both of the new options diversify AdWords custom matching to deliver more value to digital marketers who don’t focus on collecting a large roster of customer email addresses.

Like the more familiar custom match options, these can be used on search, display, shopping ads, and two key Google properties: YouTube and Gmail. By combining your customer data with Google’s array of hashed strings, you can create ultra-customized Web audiences.

The new matching options are:

Phone Numbers

Mainly meant as a tool for re-engaging your former customers, matching users by phone number allows you to benefit from Google’s enormous reach in the mobile phone ecosystem. All you need to do is upload your list to AdWords or use the AdWords API.

adwords expanded customer match tool

Mailing Address

Although not quite as prevalent as phone numbers, the mailing address has a powerful role to play as the ultimate geo-targeting solution. When it works, it works beautifully: It is the most personal and precise approach, allowing virtually one-to-one personalization of ads.

The new targeting options can vastly enhance a wide range of advertising campaigns:

  • Direct mailing lists for new prospects, established customers, or lapsed buyers.
  • Rewards programs for re-engaging users and raising lifetime customer value.
  • Micro-targeted offers for specific neighborhoods within a larger town or city.

Smaller local businesses with traditional “brick and mortar” locations have plenty to gain from the new search options. They will be able to glean targeting information directly from customer records and create positive feedback loops that build lasting brand relationships.

Of course, average customers might be a little bit concerned about the increased reach of ad targeting. Companies should be careful to update their privacy and data management policies to reflect new practices. Google does its part by providing SHA256 security compatibility.

Data uploads are performed with SSL encryption and data files are deleted soon after use, too.

New custom matching is a great reason to take a look at your current campaigns and what fresh, innovative ideas you can execute in the future. It also shows the Big G is listening to marketer feedback – something we can all get excited about!