In his presentation during the monthly webcast, Program Manager Shamit Patel talked about some of the new “parity features” in adCenter API version 6. These are features that were released in the adCenter Web interface in the spring, but were not available in API version 5.1.

One set of new features will give advertisers more control over targeting, bidding, and distribution of advertising campaigns via the API. These targeting feature updates are especially of interest for advertisers who like to concentrate on local advertising. Especially of interest will be the “Business Location” targeting capability. You provide the address, you provide the radius -- meaning the distance around that business in which you’d like your ads displayed -- and adCenter will serve ads to customers within that targeted area.

A possible point of confusion is the difference between the business location targeting, using the radius, and the geographical location targeting, city, state, metropolitan area, and so forth. These are handled separately as described below.

The deadline for upgrading your code to version 6 of the adCenter API is October 31. Many developers have already upgraded, but if you haven’t, don’t wait until the last minute. The product team and support engineers are available now to help with any questions you might have.

In version 6, you can use the API to apply customer targeting and incremental bids for your entire campaign with campaign level targeting and you can further refine targeting for individual ad groups.

You can set city and state targeting for multiple campaigns and ad groups using the API, an option that was previously available only in the web interface.

The API documentation on MSDN for Location Targeting describes how you use the LocationTarget data object to target ad groups or campaigns to specific geographic locations or areas. The following are the types of locations that can be targeted:

· Business Locations - You can target ads to users that are located within a specified distance of a business location. You must first add the business to the business library using the AddBusinesses service operation. Business location targeting is allowed for search ads only. It cannot be used with content or hybrid ads. Business location and geographical targets targeting are mutually exclusive. You cannot target both a business location and a geographical location.

· Geographical Locations You can target ads to users that are located within a specified distance of a geographical location. As above, you cannot target both a business location and a geographical location.

· Cities - You can target ads to users that are located in a specified city.

· Countries or Regions - You can target ads to users that are located in a specified country or region.

· Metropolitan Areas - You can target ads to users that are located within a specified metropolitan area.

· States or Provinces - You can target ads to users that are located within specific states or provinces.

Walter Poupore has a great post up on how to use the codes for country, state/province, metro area, and city. He also posted the XML file for these codes to download all available areas.