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The 5 Golden Rules for Building Creative for Google Ads

When it comes to running effective Google Ads campaigns, your creative asset is one of the key ingredients in having a successful and effective ad. 

Unfortunately, it takes more than just having the best image or video quality. 

So, how do you produce amazing Google Ads creatives that not only catch your prospects’ attention but also influence their buying decision? 

We’ve listed 5 golden rules that you should follow to develop creatives that can improve your campaign’s performance.

1. Check creative against Google compliance requirements

Among all the five rules you’re about to learn, this is the most important thing to remember. No matter how amazing your creatives are, if they don’t pass Google’s requirements, then all your efforts will be wasted. 

The problem with Google’s requirements is they’re usually set in broad categories. This means even if you followed their policies, it’s still up to them to approve or reject your creatives.

That said, we’re not going to dive deep into Google’s compliance requirements but to have a better understanding of the overarching policies, check out these guidelines for image assets and video campaigns:

2. All of your creative should be built around your unique selling proposition (USP).

unique selling proposition Google Ads

Your unique selling proposition is what distinguishes your products or services from the rest of your competitors. It’s what makes your brand stand out. 

The fitness apparel and accessories company GymShark didn’t become a billion-dollar business solely because of its products. Their products aren’t unique. In fact, there are hundreds, if not thousands, of products just like theirs. 

But their marketing message revolves around their unique selling proposition.  

If you check out their website, you’ll immediately notice their images are designed to capture a specific audience. Their products feel exclusive to specific people, and their products highlight the needs of their customers. 

In other words, they’re not just selling fitness products—they’re selling the fitness lifestyle. 

Making your USP the foundation of your creative will help it stand out from the competition, effortlessly attracting your target audience. 

Want to see more examples of USPs? Check out this blog from Shopify.

3. Build creative around what has worked for your competitors consistently.

competitive research Google Ads

If somebody continuously puts money behind an ad, it means that the ad is performing well. So if you’re not sure what creatives to produce, the best place to start is by looking at your competitors’ ads.

Find the top-performing ads they have. These are usually their longest-running ads. You can use tools like Facebook Ads library to search for ads at no cost.  

But if you want a more advanced tool that can give you all the data you need, you can use paid tools like SEMRush

The idea is to be able to create or improve your own creatives by looking for patterns and common denominators among multiple competitors.

4. Build creative around as niche a target as possible (where budget allows)

One of the greatest benefits of paid advertising is you get to play head-to-head with your biggest competitors. Decades ago, only big brands had the luxury of advertising their products through billboards, TV, radio, and newspapers because they had the budget.

Now, even small business owners can dominate their market. This is the true power of PPC—the ability to reach the right people, at the right time, for a fraction of the cost.

Most people get a lot of traffic to their site but not a lot of conversions. One of the reasons why is because of their marketing message, which includes their ads’ creatives and copy. 

You probably heard the phrase “If you’re talking to everyone, you’re talking to no one.” If your creatives are designed to target everyone, it will be hard to create a strong connection. 

By building creatives around a niche, your marketing message becomes crystal clear to the right audience. Not only that, you’ll also become an expert in that niche.

And people are willing to pay a higher price for a premium product or service given by an expert.

5. Your creative should attract the right audience and repel the wrong audience

Having a clear and specific message in your creatives is crucial so the right people resonate with your ad, and you create a connection. 

Attracting the wrong audience can result in unwanted clicks from unqualified leads, and that can get really expensive in a short period of time—especially if you’re attracting lots of bad traffic. 

For example. If your product is expensive, make sure your copy and images reflect that in some way. 

Use your demographic data in your ads. Even adding something like “for men” or “for women” works wonders for pre-qualifying your customers. 

Remember, your creatives should attract your customer avatar. Build creatives around what your audience wants to see.

BONUS: Checklist for your creatives


  • 5 images with white backgrounds (for eCommerce). Use images that show different angles of your product.


  • 5 images of the products in use. These images help your prospect understand how your product works.


  • 5 lifestyle images. Most people mistake lifestyle images for images of products in use. And that’s fine. Usually, lifestyle images display someone holding your product—it gives context and tells a story about your product. 


  • 2 product/service reviews. Someone who’s ready to buy will probably search for online reviews of your products. One of the best ways to sell your product is by getting someone—your past customers—to talk about how it works.


  • 2 videos of products in use. This could be showing different ways how to use your product. On top of that, you might want to showcase people using it (ideally, your target avatar).


  • 1 video displaying the product. If you could provide a 360-degree view of your product, it will help highlight the features of your product and increase your prospects’ desire to buy.

Video Attributes

Within 6 seconds of your video, make sure you establish the following:

  • Who your product/service is for
  • What problem it solves
  • Brand name

We dive deep into this in our blog How to Create Awesome Video Scripts for YouTube Ads (FREE Templates!).

Final words

This may not be as important as people think, but making sure that your colors and fonts match your brand impacts your ad’s performance. Molly Pittman, CEO of SmartMarketer, calls this the “ad scent.” 

It simply means your ad creatives should be aligned with your style guide or at the very least, they match the colors, fonts, and design of your website. These things help people to recognize your brand immediately.

Remember, Google Ads is all about having the best copy, creatives, and targeting. Your creative is only one part of the equation but it’s crucial.

And since Performance Max favors creatives more than Google ever has, people who can come up with more and more media and assets are going to be more successful with Google Ads. 

Related blogs:


Bryan is the marketing manager at Solutions 8, and has been on digital marketing since 2018. When he’s not working, you’ll find him working out at a local gym, reading personal development books, or playing music at home. He feels weird writing about himself in third person.

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