Google Transitions Away From Similar Audiences

Google has today announced that, come May 2023, Google Ads will no longer generate similar audiences (also referred to as ‘similar segments’) for targeting and reporting. Instead pushing to alternative, more powerful and durable automated solutions such as optimized targeting, audience expansion, and Smart Bidding. 

Matilda Rose Moir

Google is doing this as part of its leadership role, navigating through privacy changes in the advertising ecosystem whilst increasing performance of Google Ads solutions, leveraging first-party data and optimizing for marketing objectives. With the continual rise in privacy centricity, Google is pushing automation as the solution, stating that it’ll help marketers ‘reach relevant audiences, and measure results, in privacy-centric ways’.

Starting May 2023 (6 months from now), new similar audiences segments will stop being generated, and existing similar audiences segments will no longer be added to campaigns and ad groups on Google Ads and Display and Video 360. Ad groups and campaigns that already have similar audience segments attached will continue to function as expected.

Starting August 2023, similar audience segments will be removed from all ad groups and campaigns. Advertisers will continue to have access to historical reporting data for similar audience segments from past campaigns. 

What Will This Update Mean?

In terms of how this update will impact advertisers, it’ll mostly revolve around audience targeting. Advertisers will have to lean more heavily on customer match, improving their match rates and increasing the volume of audiences being filtered through (picking up the slack caused by the loss of similar audiences). 

Looking forward, advertisers are going to have to increase their trust in Google products, leaning into best practices to build custom segments and utilize Google’s in-market/affinity segments to drive performance and reach new users.

To learn more about what the loss of similar audiences will mean for your marketing, get in touch with Incubeta today, or to hear more from Google – check out our latest blog: Google Delays Sunsetting of Universal Analytics till 2024

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