Why you shouldn’t put all eggs in one search engine

How to reach an additional 17% of your market with Microsoft Advertising

By Kynan Albassit in collaboration with Microsoft Advertising

 

Don’t gamble with your reputation, your business or your livelihood. Calculated risks are fine but gambling, as in games of chance? No, don’t do it. Yet that’s what thousands of businesses and commercial entities around Australia are consciously and unconsciously doing every time they decide to place all their eggs in one “search” or “Ad-spend” basket. Here at AiiMS, we believe in the value of diversifying your products and services to provide additional income streams, this also requires that you think about the many social platforms that their audience frequents.

That said, I want to urge you, as business owners and commercial decision-makers, to also think long and hard about broadening your reach across audiences that feature a higher percentage of:

  • Higher-income earners
  • Homeowners
  • Tertiary education graduates
  • White-collar workers

In short, find decision-makers ready to make purchasing decisions.

As digital marketing experts, our reputation is built on the collective successes of our clients. One of the pivotal factors in securing, embedding and sustaining that success is understanding the advantages offered by a variety of channels and means by which your brand is amplified. By talking with us, we can help you present your business to the right audience at the right time for maximum ROI.

Back to that thought on putting all your marketing dollars in one “search” basket. Short answer – don’t do it. The slightly longer and better answer: let’s talk about the potential to power more sales through Bing and bust some myths about the network while we’re at it.

 

Microsoft Advertising myth-busters deliver the numbers that count!

Full disclosure: we believe deeply in the value that Microsoft Advertising brings to the marketing mix of our clients. So much so that we invest heavily, on behalf of the successful businesses we help, in Microsoft Advertising to ensure that their approach to gaining new business through new audiences is complete. And with a 17% market share among search engines, can anyone really afford not to be found on Bing/Microsoft Search?

If you’re surprised that Microsoft enjoys an almost 1 in 5 share of search, you’ll be shocked that:

  • 6 out of 7 search engines are powered by Microsoft
  • 25 – 54 years old is the primary age bracket of users searching on Bing (the search browser powered by Microsoft), thoroughly disproving the idea that only “old people” who struggle with tech use it. Myth Busted!
  • Microsoft 10 is currently installed on over one billion devices throughout the world, with the default engine being Bing, the reach and numbers involved are absolutely worthy of every business owners’ attention, interest and investment.
  • Bing is just one part of the owned and operated/syndicated Microsoft network, joined by Verizon (DuckDuckGo and Ecosia), AOL, Yahoo… the point being that Bing is not a lonely search outlier, it is a worldwide search engine powerhouse that is enjoying year on year growth. Myth busted!

To help make an informed decision about where your ad and media spend will serve your business best, glance through our guide to intelligent search to learn more about Bing.

 

Making an impression is fine but making a sale is even better

Simply presenting your brand, your offer, your business to a broad audience is one thing but it’s rarely enough – certainly not enough to justify your entire marketing/search budget.

If you’re truly looking to broaden your sales funnel (get more users intentionally looking at your business), you need to look at the Microsoft Audience network. There are 3 key reasons why this programmatic, native display offering that presents your ads to 11 million unique Australian users across MSN, Edge, Outlook and other third-party sites impresses us:

  1. You only pay for clicks. That’s right, you’re not paying money because a searcher may or may not have noticed your ad. There’s intentionality there. You are investing in an action that progresses your audience further along your sales funnel towards a purchase.
  2. Users are actually redirected to the advertisers’ page, not a third-party destination. This demonstrates a real understanding of sales focus – which is what you need and what we recommend for our clients.
  3. The “native” ads integrate seamlessly into the look and feel of the site you are visiting so that you’re not yanked from your workflow. This shows confidence in a way of presenting information that speaks to searchers instead of screaming at them.

We are also impressed by the fact that independent research has shown that potential customers on the Microsoft network are:

  • 178% more likely to search for the brand they’re focused on
  • 378% more likely to consider your product or service once interested
  • 238% more likely to purchase your product

Make no mistake, these are the numbers that count and it makes sense given what we know about intent, income and the connection to users that are searching with a buyer’s mindset. In short, the quality of leads from the Microsoft network is measurably superior. That’s not a guess, it’s not a gut feel – these are facts that we would like to discuss with you to help grow your business.

 

Your business is your business – Microsoft helps keep it that way

When I sat down with Renee Stubbs (enterprise and partner director) and Paul Korber (AUNZ partner development director) from Microsoft Advertising during our recent podcast episode, we enjoyed a far-reaching discussion on the benefits of the Bing network for our clients. But far from being purely a back-slapping exercise, I wanted to be sure, and in turn assure our viewers, that Microsoft had a definitive stance on the hot, hot topic of privacy. Online privacy is one of those pivotal phrases that can sway an audience by association because our right to privacy and our right to conduct our business without fear of security breaches needs to be protected.

I was heartened to hear from both of my guests that privacy and trust are key pillars of the Microsoft business. Both Renee and Paul confirmed what we at AiiMS already suspected – 85% of consumers would only consider a brand if they trusted it and that goes for investment in ads, searches and of course the advice, guidance and services that we provide as well. Happily, the three of us agreed that building trust is, in fact, a long process but it can be destroyed in a moment. But by pledging to protect customer data and refusing to export and sell it, the Microsoft teams across the entire organisation (including Xbox, store, surface, advertising…) actively build and preserve trust.

 

Diversifying ad and media spend to maximise ROI makes sense

There is more to growing sales, profit and brands than simply being available on the off chance someone looks your business’s way. Being seen by additional audiences, audiences that tend to spend more, actively search for the products and services they want and value trust is a key consideration when investing in growth. Our advice is, and always has been, to cover off as many viable options as possible in terms of reach, connection and opportunity in your chosen market. Relying exclusively on one search engine is a risk you don’t need to take.

Take that first important step towards gaining more qualified leads for growth through smart, informed, diversification and talk with us today.

Kynan Albassit is the Product Director at AiiMS, a digital agency specialising in connecting people, businesses and brands, to power growth and profitability. Renee Stopps is the Enterprise and Partner Director at Microsoft Advertising and Paul Krober is the AUNZ Partner Development Director at Microsoft Advertising – we thank them both for appearing on our podcast.

 

Reference Articles

Article 1: Microsoft Supports Australian Government Proposal Addressing News Media and Digital Platforms – Microsoft News Centre Australia

Feedback from article: Australia, journalism and search: What people are saying – On the Issues (microsoft.com)

Article 2: Microsoft’s Endorsement of Australia’s Proposal on Technology and the News – Microsoft On the Issues

 

 

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