As a Head of Paid Media, I often participate in new clients pitching and, more often than not, I am surprised at how companies are quick to dismiss Microsoft Ads as a good advertising platform for them. However, in most cases, this could not be further from the truth. This is why I wanted to showcase in a few points why you should look at Microsoft Ads twice before dismissing it and potentially losing out on a great opportunity for your company.
1. When the cat is away…
One of the great advantages of Microsoft Advertising is that it often has a less competitive auction compared to Google. This can translate into better CPCs, which will in turn have a direct impact on your ROAS. Looking at our retail clients for the past 3 years, we actually notice certain stability in cost per clicks from Microsoft Ads whereas Google paints a much darker picture in recent years.
In fact, when looking at external data from various sources you may find Microsoft Ads’ CPCs to be up to 60% cheaper than Google Ads at times.
2. Gen W, X, Y, Z
Part of the stereotype circling around Microsoft Ads is its lack of reach or richness of audiences, especially around the younger generations. Although there is some truth there (Bing has a 12% market share and do not forget about search partners), it does not necessarily make it a weakness, and for some businesses, this can actually become a strength!
For instance, data shows that 40% of the Microsoft Audience Network is aged between 35 and 54 years old. This is especially noticeable when you look at average order values between Google and Bing. In our case, looking at retail again, but this time all campaign types, Bing is always higher apart from 2020 slightly falling behind due to the particularity of that year (especially budgeting wise). This once again helps in producing higher ROAS for your campaigns.
Moreover, despite having a lesser market share than the giant that Google is, Bing is actually growing in popularity even amongst younger generations especially on desktop where it has grown its overall share by 41% since 2019.
Check out the Microsoft Search Network data.
3. Easy peasy, lemon squeezy
Microsoft Ads is incredibly humble and knows that it can’t always compete with Google Ads, and it is for this reason that they work hard on delivering services that are as close as possible as what Google Ads does. If you ask me this is a brilliant mindset to have as a company, as they focus on making it as easy as possible for the end consumer to use their tool whilst also being able to focus on their own innovations on the side.
Probably the best feature to demonstrate this would be the import functionality built in to Microsoft Ads, allowing you not only to import your campaigns from Google Ads, but also to do it via schedules so every change made on Google are replicated on Microsoft. At Bell, we are no strangers to this functionality, although more often than not, we mainly use it once, when creating accounts. As we are very data-driven, we prefer optimising campaigns differently on each search engine.
4. Google is not the only one that Innovates…
As mentioned earlier, Microsoft often replicates Google’s features in an effort to make their platform as easy to use as possible. However, they are also innovating a lot, especially in recent years. For instance, Microsoft Ads is now able to use LinkedIn audiences in UK and USA based on Job, Companies and Industries. This gives it an incredible advantage over Google Ads in the B2B world. Moreover, MSAN, the equivalent of the GDN for Google, allows you to leverage these audiences with images (and soon videos) or directly in Outlook. In fact, another recent announcement from Microsoft was the arrival of Facebook import in order to easily recreate display campaigns based on your Facebook Ads activity.
At Bell Digital we are ready to help you launch your Paid Media activity, with 15+ years of expertise spent on adapting and perfecting our methodologies on a variety of advertising platforms such as Microsoft Ads. We are a Microsoft Advertising Select Partner and a Premier Google Partner.