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Google’s AdLingo: The Age of Conversational Ads

Marketers now have a new generally-available ad type for their campaigns: conversational ads (AdLingo).

That’s the result of Google’s launch on Tuesday of its new AdLingo conversational marketing platform, which provides a display ad-like framework into which conversational ads can be placed.

Concurrent with the AdLingo announcement, Google said it was working with three providers of conversational ads: ad/marketing intelligence firm Valassis Digital, conversational commerce provider LivePerson, and Take chatbots for companies.

AdLingo provides the first generally available format for conversational ads outside of messaging apps. “Google provides the ad,” Valassis VP of Strategy Mike Balducci told me, “and we serve the chat.” In essence, he said, Google has built a display ad that performs like a messaging app.

Pillars of AdLingo
Connect in real-time

Delight users with a display advertising solution that enables a dialogue between brands and customers.

Drive helpful engagement

Reduce user drop-off by delivering immediate value and minimizing the burden of visiting multiple sites and apps.

Scale seamlessly

Deliver engaging, interactive ad experiences reaching the right audience, wherever they spend time online.

Delivery and cost basis

AdLingo’s conversational ads are served programmatically through Google’s ad network, and, like most display ads, the cost is impression-based CPM. But the real value to marketers is the user interaction, which could last minutes and for which there is no additional charge.

Why marketers should care

While Balducci said he didn’t have any stats yet as to whether conversational ads work better than regular ones, one clear advantage is that marketers can now present conversational ads outside the walls of messaging apps, notably Facebook Messenger, and, until recently, IBM’s Weather properties.

The interaction data received by the brand is essentially the same as has been available through, say, Messenger. But, Balducci added, his initial estimates indicate that the cost of engagement for conversational ads through Google’s AdLingo is lower than on Messenger.