Facebook adds location markers providing more transparency to Page’s posts, Google releases an unusual update to Search, Google Ads will require identity verification from all advertisers due to expansion of its verification program and a survey of the state of marketing during the COVID-19 crisis.

“Constant improvement and innovation are the most important parts of your digital marketing strategy.” – EmailOut

In this article, we’ll cover the following recent digital marketing news:

  1. Facebook adds more transparency to Pages posts
  2. Google rolls out an unusual update to Search
  3. Google Ads will require all advertisers to verify their identity
  4. [Survey] Marketing During COVID-19 pandemic

Ready to dive in?

Social Media News

Facebook Adding Location Transparency On Page’s Posts

The social media’s giant latest attempt in improving content transparency is adding a new feature  – location marker – that will reveal the location of pages when they publish posts.

According to Facebook, piloting this feature is part of an ongoing effort to make high-reach pages more transparent. When it rolls out, users will be able to see the location from which a page manager’s posted. It will be in the same spot the regular location tag is positioned. 

However, rather than displaying the exact city/state, it’ll only show the country. Thus, there will still be some level of privacy, whilst also achieving the goal of adding more transparency on individual business profile posts.

We’d like to reiterate that this feature will only roll out to pages that, according to Facebook, “are based outside of the US but reach large audiences primarily based in the US.” As much as the update will not apply to all pages in the US, the company have not indicated what it qualifies as a page with “large audience” or “high reach”.

It’s also important to note that the update is mandatory. Page managers cannot opt-out of having their location revealed when publishing a post.

This feature is also joined by the ‘About This Account’ one Instagram launched back in 2018.

Search Engine and SEO News

An Unusual Update To Google Search

Google is always doing its best to provide the most relevant search results for any given query. However, sometimes, that’s not always possible. Nonetheless, the search engine giant has fail-safes in place to prevent such things from happening.

With that said, the company announced quite an unusual update to Google Search. Users will be made aware when the results for their query have lower-than-average quality. 

What does this mean exactly? When Google is not really able to match a user’s search query with relevant results, it will display a message notifying the user.

Digital Marketing News: An Unusual Update To Google Search | EmailOut.com - free email marketing software

The reasons for the lack of relevant results range from misspelling to not enough information on the web (which is rarely the case, but it happens). When possible, this new feature will provide alternative searches as well as tips on how users can refine their search queries in order to find the information they seek.

The message shouldn’t show up too often as there is always something helpful the search engine giant can find. However, it will certainly help users save time that they would otherwise spend sifting through irrelevant search results.

PPC and Ads News

All Advertisers In Google Ads Will Be Required To Verify Their Identity

As part of a major expansion of Google’s ad transparency requirements, the company will require all advertisers to provide official documentation that will confirm their identity.

It’s worth mentioning that this new ad policy is tied to Google Ads 2018 policy update for political advertisers.

The verification program will include – 

a) personal identification methods;
b) business incorporation documents; and
c) any other documents legally verifying the advertiser’s identity.

When advertisers are required to submit their ID documentation they will be alerted and they’ll have 30 days to respond. According to Google, “multiple failed attempts to complete the verification program will result in your ads not serving.

Once the company has verified the advertisers’ identity, it’ll use that information to generate a new disclosure panel on any ads they run, displaying the business’s name and country of origin.

With millions of active advertisers, approving and running with the new disclosure tag will prove to be quite a significant task for Google. Therefore, the company will be verifying advertisers in phases, starting in the U.S. and continuing to expand globally.

You can read more about the verification program here.

Digital Marketing News

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, a vast majority of marketers have either adjusted or completely halted their marketing activities.

Marketing and PR firm Element-R Partners conducted a survey polling 127 professionals in the digital, PR and marketing communications. According to the results, 74% of marketers stated they’ve changed course or have temporarily ceased their marketing activities. On the other hand, 26% said they have not altered their marketing approach.

Furthermore, of the marketers who participated in the survey, 61% feel highly annoyed when receiving emails (or calls) from businesses that seem to be operating as usual. Actually, 29% appear to be highly irritated by this. Only 11% state it doesn’t really bother them – at all, whilst 28% simply remain neutral.

When asked to describe their current marketing activities amid the COVID-19 pandemic, 47.2% said they are shifting tactics, 16.5% have temporarily suspended their marketing activity, 15% are doing less while only 7.1% are doing more with their marketing activities. Moreover, 8.7% are using this dreadful pandemic situation as an opportunity to plan their marketing approach, while 5.5% are conducting business as usual.

The survey also asked the participants the one question that’s on all marketers’ minds: “When will things get back to normal?” Unsurprisingly, 48% of respondents said they will wait to see ‘signs of normalcy’ and 26% don’t even know. 11.8% believe things will get back to normal within 3 to 5 weeks and 7.1% believe normalcy will come within two weeks. 

We’d like to warn you that the survey was conducted at the end of March. Thus, the results may not be reflective of the current situation.

Final Thoughts

Do you have any suggestions or ideas on what digital marketing news topics you’d like us to look out for in the future? Write your requests below. We’ll keep an eye out (or two) so you don’t have to – and all for FREE, of course.

In the meantime, you can take a look at our email marketing blog for useful advice, tips, tricks and best practice. We will also keep you up-to-date with the most recent email news, social media news, search engine news as well as PPC & Ads news.

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