To eliminate marketing budget waste, one must comprehend the real performance drivers.

The increased uptake of AI and automation among marketers presents many opportunities, but also risks – chief amongst them a significant increase in ad budget mis-spend. Budget wastage has become increasingly challenging to detect due to shifts in how marketers gauge online success, an over reliance on technology, and a lack of comprehension of what is happening “underneath the hood” of campaigns.
According to research conducted by Proxima, as much as 60% of marketing budgets are wasted due to many businesses investing their advertising budget blindly on Google without having clarity on the quality, relevance, or placement of their ad campaigns.

Google has undergone significant transformation, with AI progressively assuming control over campaigns, reducing manual intervention for marketers. Marketers are urged to adopt “ad and match” functions, which use automation to determine what content is presented to consumers, rather than configuring it manually.
Numerous marketers are running campaigns either solely relying on Google’s own tools like Performance Max (or PMax) or using AI-enabled ad tech platforms to manage various aspects such as bidding, budget optimisation, audience targeting, and creative copy – or a combination of both. This trend is arguably resulting in the creation of an opaque ‘black box’ of paid advertising, leaving marketers in the dark as to how to effectively manage digital marketing campaigns themselves.

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