Google Ad Lead Vidhya Srinivasan Muses About The Future Of Advertising

Google executives are thinking about new ways to advertise, add new advertising units, and support new services. 

Today, Google Ad Lead Vidhya Srinivasan shared insights from her brilliant engineering mind to describe a list of "what ifs," all with examples. 

Srinivasan compared last year's advances in artificial intelligence (AI) at Google focused on advertising, data and privacy, and those that have already taken place this year, with changes the industry could expect to see in 2024.

Agencies, advertisers and publishers wonder how Google will add ad units to AI-supported products.

There are clues throughout Srinivasan's open letter to the industry. Today, when planning a trip to Hawaii, for example, someone might type in search-engine queries such as “what’s the first island I should visit in Hawaii.”



The results reveal a quick snapshot with links to travel sites and a list of islands the person querying might want to consider. And while this may create a great starting point for further research, Srinivasan believes there are many more possibilities for the future. 

"Imagine seamlessly integrating ads into the AI-powered overview," Srinivasan wrote. "In my example, I could see helpful ads for activities in the island descriptions, hotel options, and more. We could serve existing ads categories better, and significantly expand the categories where ads would be helpful."

Last year might have been about implementing artificial intelligence-based technologies, but this year will be about "supercharging" every part of the advertising process, Srinivasan writes in a letter that was intended to prepare the industry for its annual Google Marketing Live event.

The future of advertising will be built on artificial intelligence -- but also privacy-safe technology. Google's research shows that 91% of people want brands to be transparent about how they use the data they collect.

She wrote that when Google collects less data, AI helps to fill the gaps.

In the past year, the company developed AI-powered products built on first-party relationships, machine learning, modeling, and other privacy-based technologies, such as Privacy Sandbox APIs. She pointed to a page that outlines some steps advertisers can take to prepare. 

The changes will occur on Google search as well as related products such as YouTube. 

The rise of short- and long-form content is a major part of this. YouTube Shorts are watched by more than 2 billion users monthly, and viewers worldwide now watch more than 1 billion hours of YouTube content on their TVs daily.

AI enables everything from content recommendations to accessibility on YouTube. In the future, AI will power human creativity on YouTube and YouTube advertising.

"In 2023, AI helped creators and advertisers with new campaigns and creative asset tools that enabled them to connect with audiences and drive demand across screens and formats," Srinivasan wrote. "In 2024, AI will help us better tailor creatives — like changing scenery from Paris to New York — to resonate with individual viewers dynamically and at scale."

Google is prepared to show marketers what the future of advertising will look like.

The event, which will showcase some of Google's latest AI-powered innovations, takes place on May 21. 

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