Benefits of the Google Display Network

By Gregory Keegan

What is display advertising?

You’ve seen examples of it thousands of times. Display advertising is simply the broad term that covers online advertising that uses images, graphics, and other visuals to convey a message on a website or mobile app. (Search advertising, on the other hand, refers to the online ads that show up on your search results.) The main purpose of display advertising is to achieve online exposure for the advertiser across the web—and to build brand awareness.

You can buy display placements directly with third party sites (e.g., local newspaper websites) or through a network, such as the Google Display Network.

What is the Google Display Network?

If you’ve never heard of it, it’s high time for a quick-and-dirty primer. The Google Display Network is an enormous network of sites across the internet—reaching over 90% of internet users and spanning over two million websites. That’s a lot of exposure. Through specific targeting methods, however, it can actually be quite simple to find the consumers who are interested in your product or service.  That combination of broad scope and targeted exposure is what gives this form of advertising its potential to reach a large number of the right consumers at a lesser cost than some other forms of advertising.

How does display advertising work?

Through the Google Display Network, you have access to various targeting methods. The three you need to know are: keyword targeting, placement targeting, and interest targeting. All three of these methods are effective for reaching the most relevant consumers, which leads to increased brand awareness and exposure.

  • Keyword targeting is a method that utilizes keywords, similar to Google’s Search Network, to show your ads on relevant sites. Google finds sites that have similar content to the chosen keywords on which to display your ads. This takes the guesswork out of trying to determine the sites you want your ad to display.
  • Placement targeting allows you to choose specific websites for your ads to appear on. When you are launching your campaign, you will create a list of the sites you would like to utilize, which would likely change based on the product or service being promoted. For example, a home equity campaign may include or as placements. This allows you to target high traffic websites that are relevant to your potential customers.
  • Interest targeting is a way to display your ads to users based on their interests. With this type of targeting, Google displays your ads to users who have interest in a certain product based on their browsing history and online behavior, including actively searching for the product being advertised. This targeting method can be very effective for banks by allowing them to target audiences such as “avid investors” if you are advertising investment services, or even “auto enthusiasts” if you are promoting an auto loan special. Interests used can be as broad as “financial services” or as in-depth as “30 year mortgages,” allowing for a great deal of range and value.

Why should your bank take advantage of the Google Display Network?

Display advertising is a cost-effective alternative to traditional marketing channels such as print or billboard advertising, and it affords marketers an abundance of flexibility. Display ad campaigns can run for as long or as short a duration as needed. And banks can further utilize display ads to reach more specific audiences than many traditional marketing channels offer.

Display ads can be thought of as the “newspaper advertising of the internet,” but with far greater and more targeted reach—and more in-depth targeting options. This type of advertising is beneficial in creating brand awareness and frequency of message to consumers. Exposing potential consumers to your bank early in the buying process will help drive more business and put your financial institution on the minds of consumers.

Gregory Keegan is a Digital Media Coordinator at Pannos Marketing based in Bedford, NH. Pannos Marketing is an award winning, full service communications firm specializing in strategic marketing, branding, digital marketing, social media, e-commerce and website solutions for financial institutions. Email:[email protected]. LinkedIn.