Last autumn, Google announced that their Responsive Display Ads (RDAs) would become the default display format. That meant that advertisers could provide several pieces of imagery and copy, and optimised ads would be output by Google’s machine learning algorithms.

Little has changed since that initial rollout, that is, until last week when Google announced ‘three new features for responsive display ads’; video assets, new creative insights and the ad strength scorecard.

Below, we take a look at what’s changed and how to take advantage of the upgrade.

Video for Responsive Display Ads

It was only a matter of time before video, via YouTube, became an option for RDA campaigns. Like responsive search ads (RSAs), the ads get assembled by Google’s machine learning algorithms.

These ads are made up of multiple images — and now up to five YouTube videos — headlines, descriptions and brand logos, that get served in different combinations and ad sizes dynamically.

Previously in beta, this has now been rolled out to all accounts. By scanning your YouTube channel, you can add up to 5 videos per ad (up to 30 second videos) to start scaling ad creation, testing and optimisation.

Combinations Report

RDAs can be served in dozens of combinations, and while machine learning helps you deliver the best ad to the right customer, it’s not always easy to tell what’s working and why. With the new combinations report, you’ll be able to learn how different creative asset combinations perform.

This new report shows you the top performing asset combinations that are being generated. You’ll see separate sections for combinations based on your images, text, dynamic feeds, and videos.

You can find the Combinations report by viewing asset details on your RDA, and clicking in to the Combinations tab.

Ad Strength Report

Creating relevant and helpful display ads is top-of-mind for every advertiser. As a result, Google have introduced an ad strength score for your RDAs (very similar to the one already in place for RSAs), so you can ensure your ads are set up for success before they start to show.

Google will show you progress reports on the number and quality of images, headlines and descriptions you’ve added, offering “next steps” tips for improvement. If you click in to edit your RDA, you can see your ad strength score.


With YouTube at the forefront of Google advertising, this comes as no surprise that video assets have been introduced to RDAs. Make the most of this new feature and be one step ahead of your competitors. Start testing new creatives, learn what works for your customers and begin optimising to drive the best results.