How Gmail Ads Can Help You Reach 900 Million People

How Gmail Ads Can Help You Reach 900 Million People


Chances are good that if I bet you a million dollars that I know what email provider you use, I’d be booking my flight to Figi right now. How can I be so confident? Because around 900 million people use Gmail (as of 2015).

In addition to being an interesting factoid and providing a strong basis for a bold bet, this is an important stat for marketers for two main reasons:

  1. 900 million people is a lot of eyeballs
  2. Gmail Ads

As you may (or may not) know, Gmail Ads are small native ads that appear at the top of your Gmail promotions tab. At first, they appear in a collapsed state, but once clicked, they expand into full page ads that mimic the informational and visual likeness of a landing page.

One of the primary benefits of Gmail Ads is their ability to target users specifically within their Gmail accounts with a mix of text and image ads.

Since Gmail Ads are managed directly through the AdWords interface, you have the option to take advantage of the same targeting that can be used for Google Display Ads, such as:

  • Keyword & contextual targeting – reach users based on certain words and identify them based on which of your products they’re reading about across millions of web pages in real time.
  • Topic targeting – makes your ads eligible to appear on pages on the Google Display Network that have content related to your selected topics.
  • Affinity targeting – allows you to reach and connect with an enthusiastic audience of consumers who are likely to love your brand, on a massive scale.

(Remarketing audiences are not available with Gmail Ads due to restrictions around personally identifiable information regarding email marketing.)

  • Domain targeting – allows you to target (by domain) companies that users receive an email from. This gives you the opportunity to target brand loyalists who are currently receiving your emails. Targeting these consumers with an incentive may entice them to open the ad, even if they may not open your actual emails.
    • Targeting competitors by domain – gets you in front of consumers who have already shown interest in a similar product, making them more likely to purchase.
    • Targeting companion products by domain – targeting consumers who might be looking for complimentary products to your own.
    • Targeting personas by domain – if you have determined the persona and demographics of your target market and know where those consumers typically shop, this feature allows you to target those store’s domains, show your ads and get in front of that audience.
  • Exclusion targeting – allows you to negate consumers who do not make sense to target in your campaigns. This can range from excluding your own domain in order to avoid people who are already getting your promotional emails to excluding specific geo locations that you may not be in or that you don’t ship to.

Another important thing to note about Gmail Ads is that you can layer your targeting. This means that you’re not limited to using just one of these targeting features. You can actually use multiple types of targeting simultaneously. For example, you could layer keyword and contextual targeting with affinity targeting and competitor targeting to reach a more qualified audience and increase your conversions.

Like any new marketing endeavor, when you first set-up your Gmail Ads, it is important to take the time to test your audiences and determine which ads resonate the most with your target market.

Want more information about marketing with Gmail Ads? Reach out to our Paid Marketing team!