Essential Watching – The Google Mobile Exam Hangout

On the Friday 14th August, Google live streamed a Mobile exam refresher hangout, which was hosted by former Googler Fred Vallaeys. If you are planning to take the Mobile exam soon, then this hangout is essential watching, as it is packed full of information that you should know before jumping in. Fred discusses many topics featured in questions on the exam and there’s also a Q & A session after the presentation with helpful hints and clarification on some key points.

There were so many topics covered in the hangout, here is a brief summary of what to expect when watching:

  • An explanation of behaviors when using smart phones and mobile devices vs desktop.
  • The importance of giving users a good mobile experience and how that can be achieved through mobile site design.
  • What can be achieved through apps, including how to monetise apps and boost app engagement.
  • The advertising channels where your AdWords ads can appear, including Search, Display, YouTube and AdMob.
  • What can be achieved through the use of mobile ads, and an explanation of ad extensions that can be used including location, app, sitelink and call only extensions.
  • An explanation of the ad types that can be used to promote apps, including app install ads, app engagement ads etc.
  • Information about the ‘lightbox’ ad format and how it works depending on whether it is viewed on mobile or desktop.
  • Information about video ad formats including TrueView ad formats and the mobile video masthead.
  • Deep links, including an explanation of the different types of deep links available and what can be achieved.
  • Targeting methods, including remarketing from your apps.
  • Information about bidding strategies, including automatic bidding, flexible bid strategies and conversion optimizer.
  • Mobile bid adjustments and how to calculate a mobile bid modifier.
  • Information about measuring the effectiveness of a mobile campaign, including different conversion types.
  • Google analytics set up and requirements.
  • App analytic reports including the mobile app overwiew report and the mobile app behaviour report etc.
  • In app conversion tracking methods including SDK, Codeless, server to server and Install feedback.
  • An explanation and benefits of upgraded URL’s.
  • Counting calls as conversions, including the use of Google forwarding numbers and feature availability.
  • Terms used in the exam questions that you should be aware of, eg ‘showrooming’, ‘SDK’, ‘touch targets’, ‘auto exclusions’, ‘viewable impressions’ etc .

The exam is crammed full of questions about these topics, and you will be able to identify some of the scenarios used in this hangout as a base for the actual exam questions, so it’s really worth paying attention to all of the details.

Refresher Hangout: Mobile Advanced Exam


Seasonal Study Tips!

3 Seasonal Study TipsAre you studying for an exam over the holiday period? It really doesn’t need to be painful, here are three tips to help keep you on track through the holiday season:

1.  “Food Coma” of “Hangover Head”

Lets face it, we all over indulge at some point over the festive period and we can all forgive ourselves for that but, its not a good combination when trying to study for an exam. Remembering that one or two hours of quality study when you feel rested and fresh is much better than numerous hours of half reading, yawning and repeat reading that page full of text and getting frustrated. Don’t schedule to study on a full belly and a foggy head, whether it’s caused by too much food or alcohol!

2.  Family visits/ children home from school for the holidays

We all love a house full of family and friends over the holidays, but that can bring extra noise and distraction when studying for an exam. Make sure that you give yourself a fair chance to concentrate by planning time aside in a quiet and well lit space. It doesn’t have to be your own home, it could be a local library or a coffee shop for example.

3.  It’s about learning, not torture!

So you have a study plan in place, but you got invited to spend a few hours at a party with your friends and you ended up coming home much later in the evening than you planned. Upon waking up the next morning, you decide to chain yourself to your laptop for eight hours straight as punishment for the missed time yesterday …

there’s really no use in punishing yourself, what’s done is done, and it is supposed to be the holidays after all. It is however important to be realistic and remember moving forward that you have a study plan, and that you implemented it in order to get prepared.

The curiously short career of the AdWords pretender

Exams have structures that can be gamed and you can cheat your way through any standardised test. AdWords exams are no exception.

If put up to the challenge, I could find a way to pass a test of French language proficiency although I can’t properly spell more than five words and surely can’t pronounce any of them satisfactorily. But if I actually cheated on a test to get a job as a language instructor, then my first day in front of a class would be a disaster for me and a source of laughter to the students who would go on to retell the story over and over.

Why would search engine marketing be any different?

Let’s be clear: You won’t get caught cheating on an AdWords exam. But there is a 100% chance that you will face that moment of reckoning when you’re asked by a colleague or client “Why don’t you know how to do your job?” You’ll be outed and stories about you will be retold.

If you faked AdWords knowledge to get a job, then even if your boss didn’t fire you, you’d still spend the rest of your tenure being treated like a child.

If you faked it to get a client, then even if they didn’t sue you in court or fire you, you’d still spend the rest of your relationship toiling away on free “added-value” services and your reporting requirements would never stop growing.

Just because I can fake my way into a French language teaching position doesn’t mean I’d want to. If my cheating were successful, then I would have positioned myself for that upcoming moment of self-inflicted embarrassment.

The best way to avoid being discovered not knowing what you’re talking about is to know what you’re talking about. For search engine marketing, that means knowing the subject through and through. Learn everything you can and test yourself with iPassExam’s practise questions. When a colleague or client asks you one of those same exact questions that will be your time to shine.

How To Pass The Google Video Advertising Advanced Exam

Google have recently created and launched a new certification exam that can be taken within the Google Partners portal – the Video Advertising Advanced exam. Google state that this new exam covers “basic and advanced YouTube and Google Display Network concepts, including topics such as ad formats, targeting, and reporting”.

Team iPassExam have been working very hard behind the scenes and we are very proud to announce launch our New Video Advertising Advanced Question Resource. It’s worlds first video exam study resource, you won’t find another resource like this anywhere else!

We are delighted to offer readers of our blog a 20% discount off a subscription to our video advertising exam study resource for the next 20 days! Just use the code “Video20” before going through the checkout to receive your discount.

Exam Details
This new exam should not to be considered as a component of the AdWords certification exams. Any candidate wishing to take this exam must already be individually qualified in AdWords (this means that you must have already passed the Advertising Fundamentals exam plus one of the advanced exams, such as Search Advanced or Display Advanced) before the exam becomes available within the portal to take.

Exam Specifics
The exam contains 74 questions, and you are given 90 minutes to answer them. You will need to achieve at least an 85% score in order to pass, which is considerably higher than the score required for the AdWords advanced exams. In my opinion, 90 minutes is more than ample time to complete this test. Your score will be immediately delivered upon answering question 74 with a percentage figure and a “you answered **/75 correctly” figure too. If you don’t pass the exam on your first attempt, you will need to resit the exam after seven days. If you do pass, the exam will remain valid for one year and you can print a certificate of achievement to hang on your wall. 🙂

Know Your Stuff
Don’t fall victim to the thought process that you have a free pass to acing this exam because you already know about Display advertising …that’s just a fast road to disappointment. You will need to prepare for this test specifically by using the Video advertising learning material, and more essentially having hands on experience of running video advertising campaigns. It’s simply not enough to go reading the learning material and then think you are instantly ready to take this exam.

What To Expect From The Exam

Question style:
There are a mixture of single best answer questions are True/False questions. As with all Google exams, they are famously worded trickily, and you will need to fully read and digest the question and answer options before making your choice. I’ve read comment threads where many exam candidates have expressed the opinion that some of the answer options are very close to each other, making it hard to decide what indeed is the best answer.

Question Content:
The exam has a big focus on AdWords for Video, and there are quite a few questions asking specifics about the TrueView ad formats. Expect to be tested on where they can appear and how they work. You will be quizzed on additional features such as call-to action overlays and companion banners. You must know how and at what point an advertiser would be charged. Essentially, you must understand that Ad Gallery is completely different to AdWords for video in how it is used and what can be achieved.

Another hot topic is targeting and targeting groups. If you are not already familiar with these, don’t fall into the trap of assuming that they work like ad groups, they don’t. There are many questions in the exam related to different types (or methods) of targeting, how targeting methods are applied within a targeting group, the number of targeting groups that can be created within a campaign, and how targeting groups can be assigned to ads etc. It really is a hot topic that features prominently in the exam.

Expect to answer questions about the benefits of linking your YouTube account with AdWords. It’s not enough to know that you can do it, know how to do it and the reasons for doing it too.

There are also quite a few questions specifically about remarketing on YouTube, and I cannot put enough emphasis on this next point: make sure you know this inside out! In my opinion, reading the learning material alone will not prepare you for the questions you will be asked during the exam. Make sure you fully utilize your AdWords account at this point, so you know exactly what can and cannot be achieved through remarketing.

There are plenty of questions about the benefits of YouTube Analytics, and the types of reports and statistics that can be accessed through the tool. You must also be aware of what statistics are available in AdWords for video campaigns, and understand specifically when and why you should focus on certain metrics.

Finally, expect to see questions about reservations based campaigns, the formats available, how they are priced, and how reports can be accessed.

Video Exam Recap: Our Top Tips

  • Thoroughly read the learning material provided.
  • Apply everything you are reading to an AdWords for Video campaign.
  • Explore every part of the AdWords for video interface, YouTube and YouTube Analytics, leave no stone unturned.
  • Visit YouTube and watch videos, (no it’s not shirking!) Pay particular attention to the different ad types you can see, and determine which formats are relevant to AdWords for video etc. What else can you see? Are there companion banners, call-to-action overlays?
  • If there is even a hint of a suggestion to link accounts or to complete and action in the learning material, do it. Its a massive boost to aid learning when you actually complete the process rather than just reading about it.

Good luck!

An Observation About The AdWords Search Advanced Exam

Here at iPassExam HQ, we regularly take the AdWords exams to monitor for changes/updates to exam topics, and we also regularly check the certification center to monitor for changes too. We do this to make sure our study questions are a good representation of what you can expect to see in the real exam.

Google advise exam candidates to prepare for the exam by reading the certification center learning material because the exam is based on this material. Google also advise that the lessons found in the Google Partners portal should “teach everything you need to know” before taking the exams. It’s no secret that there tends to be a lag between the AdWords interface, learning material and exam, most AdWords exam veterans are used to that.

small_3223044657Upon taking the Search Advanced exam yesterday, I noticed a couple of exam questions were presented to me which were based on outdated information, and this information was no longer present in the certification center. So how can a new exam candidate be expected to prepare for these questions?

Conversions (one-per-click)
Now I realize that this is not a big deal for anyone who is familiar with the previous conversion terminology used by Google up until recently. However, any new exam candidate taking the Search Advanced exam for the first time could find this subject confusing. Google no longer refer to conversions (one-per-click) and (many-per-click) in the AdWords interface or certification center. This previous conversion counting system was replaced with the new ‘All conversions’ and ‘Unique conversions’ counting methods earlier in the year, and conversion columns in statistics chart were renamed to ‘Conversions’ and ‘Converted clicks’ too.

If you plan to take the Search advanced exam in the coming weeks, make sure you take note of the previous terminology of Conversions (one-per-click) and what this means, because you too could encounter questions of this nature. There is an AdWords help article available called ‘Counting Conversions’, which gives a breakdown of the changes to be aware of including the old terminology and how the specific aspects have been renamed.

Be prepared – don’t let this catch you out on the exam. Remember, the Search exam can be tough and every answer counts towards making the passing grade. Good luck!

photo credit: Guudmorning! via photopin cc

Sitting The AdWords Exams? Set Your Expectations!

knight and princessThe AdWords exams are famously known amongst industry professionals to be trickily worded. Regardless of whether you have worked with AdWords for many years, or are an AdWords newbie, you can guarantee there will be some questions on the exam that could ‘catch you out’. In this post I want to discuss the different question types you can expect to see, and also the writing style of the exam.

Continue reading Sitting The AdWords Exams? Set Your Expectations!

I’ve Passed My Advertising Fundamentals Exam, What Should I Do Next?

confusedThe Google Advertising Fundamentals exam is very appropriately named as the primary exam to start with when beginning your career journey into the world of PPC. The exam is more general and covers basic of online advertising with AdWords, none the less passing this exam is an achievement and sets many people in great stead for moving to the advanced exams. But after receiving a pass for Fundamentals, what should you do next?

Continue reading I’ve Passed My Advertising Fundamentals Exam, What Should I Do Next?

AdWords Exam Panic: I Can’t See My Score! :-O

2012/04/12 TraceyImagine this: You are taking the Fundamentals exam. You’ve been preparing for this for weeks, all of the anticipation, and you’ve nearly finished it. Upon confirming the answer to question 90, you see that you have passed with a great score. Feeling truly amazing about your exam success, you close the window in which you took the exam, and you are back within your Partners account.

Continue reading AdWords Exam Panic: I Can’t See My Score! :-O

Google Testing Center V’s Partners Platform, Which Should I Choose?

?????????????????????Why Are Both Of These Platforms Still Running?

At present, it’s still possible to take the AdWords exams via the Google Testing Center as well as the Google Partners Platform. It’s not been made clear by Google whether they will be fully moving from the old test center in the coming months, although candidates are being encouraged to ‘Upgrade to Google Partners’ via a message at the top of their Google Certification Program account screens. Many exam candidates have been left wondering:

Which Of The Platforms Should They Use To Take The Exam?

Continue reading Google Testing Center V’s Partners Platform, Which Should I Choose?

How much is Your Time Worth?

time-is-moneyThere have been many changes introduced with the Google Partners program, but perhaps the biggest is the fact that the exam is now free.  There has been a mixed reaction in the community to this announcement.  Some see removing the $50 fee as a good thing; some think it devalues the kudos of the certificate.

Continue reading How much is Your Time Worth?