In a highly competitive marketplace, creating effective marketing campaigns is crucial for increasing visibility and establishing online presence. Business owners and marketers often experience less than satisfactory results from Bing Ads, primarily because they often transfer the effort they have put into Google Adwords directly to Bing Ad.
It won’t work.
The dynamics are a tad bit different – ENOUGH to make a huge difference.
Let’s briefly start with the basics and move towards more targeted settings for your Bing Ad marketing campaign.
The Ad Format and Character limits
Bing Ads offer a single 71 character ad limit, whereas as Adwords offers two description lines for the ad copy. Although every Bing Ad has the same components: the URL, title, ad text, and a possible destination URL, the character limit for each varies. Hence, simply transferring the exact ad copy from Google Adwords will require adjustments and rewording before it can be made to work for you.
The General Guidelines
Microsoft will refuse to accept your ad campaigns if the content does not meet the Bing Ads guidelines/policies. The most important ones to remember include:
- Avoiding profane or offensive language in Bing ads
- Avoiding advertising illegal products
- MISLEADING your customers with your ad’s text, including creating a wrong impression
- Using legible writing style, avoiding grammatical errors and avoiding repetitive words
Additionally, the landing page your ad is directing to must provide content that is relevant to the ad text and keywords. Irrelevant landing pages will also get your ad disapproved.
Setting the Right Goals
Before you start working on your ad, you must first pin point the exact outcome.
Your Ads cannot be generic.
They cannot be expected to target every customer intention.
If you are targeting transactional keywords with an intention of making a sale, then your ad must be targeted and optimized for that end. Nothing else. If you want to simply increase traffic to your website, then you must optimize your ad for that end.
Your ad campaign must be geared to compel your visitors to perform a single, predetermined, desired action.
I’ll discuss four possible answers to this question:
- Using Bing Ads to increase traffic to your website
- Lowering the cost of your Bing ads
- Increase conversion on your landing pages with Bing Ads
- Boosting the number of calls from qualified leads through your Ad
Now each of these has a quick fix for it, one you can immediately implement and a long-term strategic initiative that must be thoroughly planned and then executed. I’ll discuss all of them together.
Using Bing Ads to Increase Traffic to Your Website
Increasing traffic to your website means enhancing visibility of your products and services and hence is crucial for boosting chances of closing sales. This automatically translates into higher revenue, greater awareness for your products, and consistently pushing your customers in your marketing funnel.
Here are the immediate solutions to your goal:
- Increase your ad position – Customers will find you faster if your ad is visible in the top position in search results. This is possible by increasing your bids on the right search terms. A rule of thumb is to increase bids on terms and ads if 1) they are failing to consistently hit your daily targets, and/or 2) are being consistently displayed below the top 3 ad positions.
- Update your keyword cluster with newer search terms – how customers search for your products and services is always shifting, primarily due to the trending conversations in the online space. A new story, incident, or campaign (from a competitor and even from a wholly different industry) that went viral may spring up new content. The new trend can significantly alter how people are searching the internet. Hence, it is essential that you remain abreast of the changes and expanding consistently expand your keyword list by adding current and relevant keywords.
Here are some long-term initiatives to increase website traffic using Bing ads:
- Create ads to increase page depth – Help customers in their search by including links to additional and relevant site pages in your ad. Use using the Sitelink Extension.
- Test your ad copy – Vary the ad copy to find what is working best you’re your target audience. Experiment with the message and format. Ensure that the ad explains the value preposition of your business (what’s different) and speak to your customers. Always end it with a clear call to action.
- Create mobile responsive pages – Capture more visitors by targeting your ads to mobile devices, allowing them to convert directly from their smartphones.
- Leverage partner networks – It is important to keep your business visible to customers even when they are viewing content that is related to your products and services. This is possible by extending your reach by adding content networks. Bing Ad offers content network bids to your campaign so as to broaden your reach.
Lower Costs of Your Bids
Everyone has a tight budget. Make the most out of your budget by stretching every advertising dollar. Here are a few quick fixes to lower your cost per click.
- Identify irrelevant terms that trigger your ads – Avoid searchers who are not the right fit for your campaign by using negative keywords. Regularly review and update your existing negative keywords list by running a search term performance report. It will show you the list of irrelevant terms that have been triggering your ad. Remove them by using them as negative keywords.
- Don’t waste money on words that are not delivering results – Remove keywords that are performing poorly. Identify underperformers by using the geographic location and keyword performance reports. The reports allow you to locate the keywords that have the lowest click through rates.
- Target long-tail keywords – we’ve heard so much about these tailed beasts. They have lower costs per clicks and target much better, and yet people don’t use them often enough. Research to find the less common keywords and key phrases that your customers are using. Now bid.
However, if you want to see significant cost savings from your Bing Ad campaign, then here are some long term strategies:
- Micro-manage your campaigns – Create smaller groups and campaigns and manage daily budgets. Segment campaigns by networks and set budget based on their performance.
- Check your match-type strategy – Change your match type strategy so that you can bid on the match types that are getting you the best results. This can easily be achieved by running a keyword performance report to find out which match types are driving the most relevant traffic to your site.
- Improve your quality score – The higher the score, the lower the lower your costs.
- Track and measure – Start with the right goals for your campaign. Then track conversions to measure the success, revising campaigns that are not meeting the goals and optimizing those that are.
Boosting Conversions on Your Website and Landing Pages
Ads should lead or compel visitors to perform a desired, pre-determined action on our landing page. Here’s how to create ads that increase your conversions.
- Set the right goals – know what you want your visitors to do after reading your ad copy. Set your goals like a target cost per sale or lead and track conversions for measuring your success. Make your ad copy action oriented in the same vein.
- Focus on what’s working – This might mean increasing budget for campaigns that are working and increasing bids on the top search terms for your product/service.
Here are some strategies to sustain those conversions over the long haul:
- Become your customer – you must review your website, target keywords, search terms, and your ads according to how customer will perceive it. Are they relevant to your customers? are your choice of words the right tone for describing and searching for your products and service. Use the quality score to find the areas that might need improvement.
- Review your keywords – expanding your keywords is it while consistently cutting on ones that are not delivering results is crucial. Determine the top terms and trends and ensure that you are consistently bidding on the top keywords as well as the long tailed, less common keywords.
Drive More Qualified Calls to Your Business
Driving more calls to your business can help you boost leads and revenue. Here are some immediate actions you can take:
- Add clickable phone numbers – Bing allows you to add clickable phone numbers (available from Ad Extensions> Call Extensions). This allows your customers to reach you directly from their smartphone with a single tap.
- Make your copy benefit-oriented – Use your ad copy to give visitors a reason to call you with a strong, benefit oriented call to action.
And finally, some regular, long-term work to get the results:
- Track results – Use the call forwarding details report from the Bing Ad reports page. This shows which campaigns are driving calls and includes insightful metrics
- Time your ads right – Focus on business hours and increase bids by using the time-of-day and day-of-the-week targeting (and biding) options under Advanced Targeting Options at the campaign level. This will require experimenting with campaigns first to find the right timings, but over the long haul it will prove its worth.
Bing Ads is as powerful as Google when it comes to targeting your customers. At times it becomes a better option especially if your competitors are more focused on only Google Adwords. And so, with the above tactics you are sure to gain an upper hand on your competition in searches.