A colleague just made me aware of a new option Google have added to Adwords for budget options, “Shared Budgets”.
Google Adwords Shared Budgets making the best use of your PPC budgets
This looks like a really helpful addition option to manage campaign budget optimisation and will make budget pacing a slightly easier task.

Traditionally it has only been possible to set budgets at a campaign level. The weakness of this is that if you want to run multiple campaign types for a particular promotion managing the daily spend is fairly manual and requires regular management.

If you have just one campaign for the promotion it is easy, just set a daily budget cap at a campaign level, now you are guaranteed not to spend more than this (on average over 30 days). It gets more complicated if you have more campaigns. The below scenario explains why.

Lets say you want to run a campaign for desktops and laptops, another for tablets and another for mobile. Now lets assume there is a daily budget for this promotion of £150 per day, logically you may give £50 to each campaign, sensible… but if one of these campaigns only spends £30 a day while another two could have spent more than the allowed £50 per day the overall promotion is losing out on valuable traffic.

What a good account manager would have done in the past is to calculate the daily budgets for each of these campaigns and then optimise according to actual spend (taking into account daily/weekly trends and yearly trends).

The new option from Google allows various campaigns to share one budget, which will relieve some of the need to constantly change budgets.

I would like Google to go one step further and create a higher level in the campaigns structure, for now lets call it “promotions”, basically a container for various campaigns. While labels can do most of the things this extra level could bring (like let me view only the campaigns I want) but a promotions level would just be tidier and would allow an overall budget with campaign level budget enabling budget cap optimisation (lowering the amount of money spent on low ROI element and increasing exposure on high ROI elements).