Google Highlights Performance Max Campaigns in Weekly PPC Chat

Every week, digital advertisers from around the world gather on Twitter to discuss relevant PPC topics. This week’s topic was Google’s new Performance Max campaign type.

A recap of the discussion is below, highlighting recent successes and advertiser pitfalls.

As a special feature, PPC Chat has hosted the official advertising liaison, Ginny Marvin from Google.

Question 1: Do you run Performance Max campaigns?

This question was answered with most “yes” by advertisers in the chat. However, it seems brands in the B2B space aren’t using them due to a lack of good use cases.

Gabriele Benedetti commented that while testing Performance Max campaigns, this type of campaign required a different approach to managing Google Ads.

Image credit: Screenshot taken by the author, February 2022

Question 2: If you haven’t done any yet, why not?

This question in particular elicited more honest feedback from advertisers. The top reasons marketers don’t use Performance Max campaigns are:

  • Lead generation clients don’t see value in them.
  • This type of campaign seems to offer a similar approach to other platforms, such as Facebook.
  • Not enough control for enterprise customers.

Julia Vyse mentions that her reasoning is due to the omnichannel marketing strategy.

Julia Vyse explains why she doesn't use Performance Max campaigns.Image credit: Screenshot taken by the author, February 2022

Question 3: How did the Performance Max campaigns perform?

This question showed a mix of volatile results, from “awful” to “surprisingly good”. Here are some of the main responses:

  • Performance Max ends up cannibalizing other higher performing individual channels.
  • Seems to work well for e-commerce clients, especially for campaigns that didn’t perform well in shopping.
  • Many say it’s too early to tell and difficult to determine due to cannibalization from other campaigns.

Many concerns have been raised about cannibalization and the lack of exclusions for campaigns.

Marvin was able to address concerns and provide clarity and hope to advertisers.

Regarding the exclusions, Marvin confirmed the following:

  • Content exclusions are already available.
  • Google will introduce account-level keyword exclusions (TBD) to address brand safety concerns.

Regarding cannibalization, Marvin clarified Google’s prioritization, summarized here:

Ginny Marvin clarifies the prioritization of Google search over Performance Max campaigns.Image credit: Screenshot taken by the author, February 2022

Basically, in theory, your existing search campaigns should be prioritized over Performance Max campaigns if a query exactly matches an Exact, Phrase, or Broad keyword in your existing campaigns.

Question 4: What is your biggest challenge with Performance Max campaigns?

The responses were extremely similar from everyone. Advertisers didn’t hold back on their riffs with this particular type of campaign. The main challenges for summary marketers are:

  • cannibalization
  • Automation management (lack of control + exclusions)
  • Death of the report (lack of data, no report of placement, etc.)
  • Google automatically creates video assets for you (most people don’t like this)

This question was then led by a similar question:

Question 5: Is there anything you would like to see different in Performance Max campaigns?

This question generated a lot of comments and discussions on the table. Top demands for Performance Max campaigns include:

  • Ability to create in Google Ads Editor
  • Campaign-level keyword exclusion, placement exclusion, device modifier, targeting
  • Being able to test without all available assets (video)
  • Reports

Marvin was able to provide valuable feedback and answers to advertisers’ wish list.

First, Marvin confirmed Performance Max support in Google Ads Editor:

Google will support Performance Max campaigns in Editor.Image credit: Screenshot taken by the author, February 2022

Next, Marvin addressed rapport and control (or lack thereof) for campaigns.

Ginny Marvin responds to reporting issues for Performance Max campaigns.Image credit: Screenshot taken by the author, February 2022

When it comes to controlling campaigns, Marvin emphasizes how critical your inputs are when creating these campaigns. For example, if you don’t specify the most important conversions, you may end up with a large number of conversions that matter less than your top conversions.

If your primary focus is e-commerce shopping, but you also have a secondary conversion of email signups, be sure to prioritize and specify what matters most. The success of the campaign will be directly attributed to how you think about building the campaign structure.


Performance Max campaigns still have a long way to go. Not only in the performance itself, but also in advertisers’ confidence to use them.

Google is actively listening to advertiser feedback and has given some hope for the future of this type of campaign.

Source: Twitter

Featured Image: TarikVision/Shutterstock

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