Using Keyword Insertion

“When a man walks into a room, he brings his whole life with him. He has a million reasons for being anywhere. Just ask him.” - Don Draper.

Draper was known for being able to expertly tailor the meaning of a product for an audience in the fictional world of Mad Men, and though a lot has changed since his era of the 60s and 70s, one thing is certainly still true: Customers walk into a store (or, these days, Google-search) for a reason, and if they don't see what they want, they'll walk right out (click away).

Keyword Insertion is an advanced Google AdWords feature that lets you tailor the text on your Adwords ads to match your customers’ search terms. This is the first step in getting customers to walk into your store; see Dynamic Text Replacement for how to keep them there.

This article will help you out with:

  • Understanding the benefits of keyword insertion.
  • Setting up keyword insertion using Google AdWords.

How do I use Keyword Insertion?

Adding your default text

  1. Click the "Ads" tab in your AdWords account.
  2. Hover over your ad, and click the Pencil icon.
  3. Type a curly bracket ({), either in the headline or a description line, and select “Keyword insertion” from the drop-down menu.
  4. Add your default text.
    • This is the text that will appear if either a) AdWords can’t match a search term with a more specific keyword, or b) the search term is more than 25 characters.
    • The default text can be up to 25 characters in a headline and up to 35 characters in a description.
    • With the headline “Buy {KeyWord: Pie}”, when a customer’s search contains the word “pie”, this piece of code tells AdWords to replace the code with the word “pie” unless a more specific matching keyword exists in your ad group (for example, “apple pie”, “pumpkin pie”, or “boston cream pie”).
  5. Click "Save" when you're finished.

Adding your keywords

  1. Select “+ Keywords” in the "Keywords" tab and choose your campaign and ad group.
  2. Enter one keyword per line.
    • Each keyword can contain multiple words.
    • Keywords are not case-sensitive.
    • To format your keyword as:
      • Lowercase (e.g., "apple pie"), use "keyword".
      • Sentence-capitalized (e.g., "Apple pie"), use "Keyword".
      • Title-capitalized (e.g., "Apple Pie"), use "KeyWord".
      • In all caps format and then title-capitalized (e.g., "APPLE Pie"), use "KEYWord".
      • Title-capitalized and then in all caps format (e.g., "Apple PIE"), use "KeyWORD".
  3. Click “Save”, and you’re done!

Building URLs for Google AdWords Keyword Insertion

Using the following format to make your Final URL:

[landing page URL]?[parameter]={KeyWord:DefaultText}

For example, the URL for my Pura Vida page might be:

visit.puravida-retreat.com?destination={KeyWord:Mexico}

In this example, my landing page URL is "visit.puravida-retreat.com", my parameter is "destination", and Google AdWords will dynamically replace {KeyWord:Mexico} with the keyword that was triggered by my visitor's search query. 

In the event that the keyword that was triggered doesn't show, the default text Mexico will appear. 


Next Steps

Now that you've got your AdWords account set up for Keyword Insertion, next you'll want to set up your Unbounce landing pages to match.

Using Dynamic Text Replacement


Other Resources

How to set up keyword insertion in Adwords
How to set up dynamic text in Bing

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