As you might have heard on Ep#46 of the #TWIMshow, Google announced a new “Evasive Ad Content” Policy that will have an effect from May 4th, 2021. Below is an overview of this update; for more details and Sajid’s expert analysis, make sure to listen to the podcast.
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What is Google Evasive Content Policy?
As of before, Google didn’t allow the direct manipulation of trademarks in the ad text. While there was no official policy against this, users could use competitors’ trademarks at their own risk of losing their Google Ads account, or in other words – it wasn’t allowed. The new update for this policy now includes the manipulation of trademarks in domains, subdomains, and logos, which will be penalized if present.
In 2018, Brandverity showcased the above situation as a great example in one of their articles – it shows how Joss & Main have bravely used an altered version of Restoration Hardware in their ad copy. If Restoration Hardware were to see and report this, Google would have likely removed it.
What does this mean for your business?
Before this update, businesses weren’t allowed to have a competitor’s name in their ad title or description, but they could get away with having it in the URL link. The only exceptions were informational sites and resellers, who still had to follow strict rules when using a trademark in their ad copy.
With the new update on that policy, getting away with a trademark in the URL is no longer possible. Anyone running ads should be aware of that update to avoid it and save some frustration. It is a relief to know that the violation of that policy, like any other, will not lead to immediate account suspension. Instead, a warning will be issued a minimum of 7 days prior to any suspension. But if a business ignores such a warning and goes against it, then make no mistake – it will be banned from running ads for life. Even if a new account with a “brand new identity” is created, Google will find out and take it down because Google knows everything.
Here is a breakdown of the overall Trademark Policy of Google.
What is allowed?
If you sell oranges, then you would surely want to include that in your ad copy. But what about Orange, the UK network that dominated the market before it ceased to exist back in 2010? If they were still around, then you would be free to use “orange,” despite it being trademarked, but only for the purpose of selling that product.
If you are a car reseller, then you can put “BMW” in your ad copy, as long as your landing page is primarily dedicated to the item corresponding to that trademark. It should also provide clear information that you are a reseller and not the manufacturer and a price or rate of the product.
What is not allowed?
If you are selling BMW cars, then under no circumstances should you use any other competitor’s trademarks, such as Mercedes. While this might sound obvious, it is worth mentioning that your ad most definitely will be taken down if your competitor reports it.
Running ads and following all these rules might look challenging, especially for beginners in this field. Why not trust an expert to get your ads going? Our expertise and experience in this field can help your business thrive from Google Ads. What’s even better – you won’t have to worry about breaching any policies and getting your account permanently removed. Check out our most recent Success Story!
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