Adriel is a South Korean startup bringing automated ad tools to small businesses — and in recent months, it’s been expanding into the United States and the United Kingdom.
This might seem like exactly the wrong time to be growing an ad-buying platform, since we’re at the beginning of what’s likely to be a tremendous pullback in ad spend due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, co-founder and CEO Sophie Eom told me via email that ad spend on Adriel increased by 7% in February, then by 6% in March, and she estimated that spend will be up by 8% in April.
“We all know that businesses are struggling from the uncertainty of the economic situations with COVID-19,” Eom said. “And most are hesitant about hiring agencies for their marketing and advertising efforts due to the high costs — in addition to the fact that many corporates don’t have enough knowledge about the right marketing processes.”
So why is Adriel still seeing growth? She argued, “We see that even in the midst of tough times, many startups and entrepreneurs are not giving up their businesses. In fact, they are shifting their focus and investments into more digital to reach their customers.”
As part of its response to COVID-19, the company is also donating ads to support small business customers in the San Francisco area.
Adriel’s technology automatically generates creative materials and suggests keywords for ads, as well as managing the targeting. But there’s also a human team that reviews campaigns and suggests ways to improve. The company does not require retainers or contracts, but charges a 19% fee on ad spend.
I first spoke to Eom at the end of 2019, when she was first expanding Adriel into the U.S. In some ways, it felt like a familiar pitch — I’ve written about companies like AdEspresso (acquired by HootSuite) and Smartly.io (which sold a majority stake to Providence Equity Partners last year), which also said they were optimizing or automating small business advertising. Plus, Facebook itself has launched an automated ad builder.
Eom suggested that while there are tools that sound superficially similar, there’s nothing quite like Adriel (which was part of Facebook’s Namsam Lab Korea incubator), with its multi-platform support for managing Facebook, Google and Instagram ad campaigns in one place, and with its focus on the true “long tail” of advertisers — she said the average Adriel client spends a relatively modest $1,000 per month on digital advertising.
“We’re not merely a self-service tool either,” she said. “We support and assist our clients in getting their ad placed, making their campaign more successful. We use technology to make all these processes more affordable for more business owners.”
She added that Adriel has launched 7,200 campaigns for nearly 20,000 business accounts.
Google December Product Reviews Update Affects More Than English Language Sites? via @sejournal, @martinibuster
Google’s Product Reviews update was announced to be rolling out to the English language. No mention was made as to if or when it would roll out to other languages. Mueller answered a question as to whether it is rolling out to other languages.
Google December 2021 Product Reviews Update
On December 1, 2021, Google announced on Twitter that a Product Review update would be rolling out that would focus on English language web pages.
Our December 2021 product reviews update is now rolling out for English-language pages. It will take about three weeks to complete. We have also extended our advice for product review creators: https://t.co/N4rjJWoaqE
— Google Search Central (@googlesearchc) December 1, 2021
The focus of the update was for improving the quality of reviews shown in Google search, specifically targeting review sites.
A Googler tweeted a description of the kinds of sites that would be targeted for demotion in the search rankings:
“Mainly relevant to sites that post articles reviewing products.
Think of sites like “best TVs under $200″.com.
Goal is to improve the quality and usefulness of reviews we show users.”
Continue Reading Below
Google also published a blog post with more guidance on the product review update that introduced two new best practices that Google’s algorithm would be looking for.
The first best practice was a requirement of evidence that a product was actually handled and reviewed.
The second best practice was to provide links to more than one place that a user could purchase the product.
The Twitter announcement stated that it was rolling out to English language websites. The blog post did not mention what languages it was rolling out to nor did the blog post specify that the product review update was limited to the English language.
Google’s Mueller Thinking About Product Reviews Update
Product Review Update Targets More Languages?
The person asking the question was rightly under the impression that the product review update only affected English language search results.
Continue Reading Below
But he asserted that he was seeing search volatility in the German language that appears to be related to Google’s December 2021 Product Review Update.
This is his question:
“I was seeing some movements in German search as well.
So I was wondering if there could also be an effect on websites in other languages by this product reviews update… because we had lots of movement and volatility in the last weeks.
…My question is, is it possible that the product reviews update affects other sites as well?”
John Mueller answered:
“I don’t know… like other languages?
My assumption was this was global and and across all languages.
But I don’t know what we announced in the blog post specifically.
But usually we try to push the engineering team to make a decision on that so that we can document it properly in the blog post.
I don’t know if that happened with the product reviews update. I don’t recall the complete blog post.
But it’s… from my point of view it seems like something that we could be doing in multiple languages and wouldn’t be tied to English.
And even if it were English initially, it feels like something that is relevant across the board, and we should try to find ways to roll that out to other languages over time as well.
So I’m not particularly surprised that you see changes in Germany.
But I also don’t know what we actually announced with regards to the locations and languages that are involved.”
Does Product Reviews Update Affect More Languages?
While the tweeted announcement specified that the product reviews update was limited to the English language the official blog post did not mention any such limitations.
Google’s John Mueller offered his opinion that the product reviews update is something that Google could do in multiple languages.
One must wonder if the tweet was meant to communicate that the update was rolling out first in English and subsequently to other languages.
It’s unclear if the product reviews update was rolled out globally to more languages. Hopefully Google will clarify this soon.
Google Blog Post About Product Reviews Update
Google’s New Product Reviews Guidelines
John Mueller Discusses If Product Reviews Update Is Global
Watch Mueller answer the question at the 14:00 Minute Mark
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