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June 12, 2009

Friday Task: Update Your Ads for Trademarked Products

Starting Monday, Google’s new Trademark policy will go into effect, and that means you can finally replace those “Buy Brand Name Widgets” Ads with something a little more relevant.  To review: under Google’s new policy, any advertiser that sells or provides information on trademarked products or services will be allowed to use trademarked terms in their ad copy.  Previously, advertisers could only use certain trademarks if they were explicitly whitelisted by the companies that owned the trademarks.

If you missed the announcement on May 14th you can find it at the Adwords Blog and it would also be worth reviewing Andrew’s take on the winners and losers in this new policy.

Now that this change is right around the corner resellers and trademark holders should make sure they are prepared for the new ad landscape.

Resellers: Check your ads! Dig into your branded campaigns and ad groups and update any generic ads with more specific versions. Check your coverage too- some of those brands that you couldn’t make money on before might work a lot better now that you can serve relevant ads.  

Are you wondering what Brands Google identifies on your site? Check it with the Search Based Keyword Tool. You’ll see a list of brands on the left side of the page and clicking into any of those will pull up a list of keywords that have been extracted from your site, along with the page they were pulled from.

Trademark Holders: You’re going to see more competition on your brand terms as resellers roll out new, more relevant ads, and your click through rates might take a hit. Where you might have been the only relevant ad on the page before, you’ll have to work harder to distinguish yourself now. Of course, there’s nothing to stop you from policing your trademark use yourself, so if you still don’t want resellers using your trademark, remind them that while Google’s policies may have changed, yours have not.

Whatever you do, remember that this is one of the biggest changes Google has made to the way they displays ads in some time, and it will make a big difference to the affected parties. Get ahead of the game, make your changes today, and be ready to hit the ground running on Monday! 

Written by Kevin Hill (Kevin.Hill at ChannelAdvisor.com)


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