Bing Ads for B2B Marketers: A Complete Guide

Bing Ads (Microsoft Advertising) is one of the most powerful marketing platforms out there, but it’s also one of the most underused. Bing Ads is a great way to increase your online presence, generate high-quality leads, and increase your return on investment (ROI). But how do you get started? This guide will walk you through the ins and outs of Bing Ads and show you how to make the most of this powerful tool to take your marketing strategy to the next level.

Understanding Bing Ads

Bing Ads, now known as Microsoft Advertising, is a service that provides pay-per-click advertising on both the Bing and Yahoo search engines. Despite Google’s dominance in the search engine market, Bing Ads presents a valuable channel, particularly for B2B marketing, due to its distinctive audience characteristics and cost-effective advertising options.

Why are Bing Ads Good for B2B?

are bing ads good for b2b

Here are other key advantages of Microsoft Advertising for B2B:

  • Targeted Audience: Bing often attracts a more mature, educated, and higher-income audience, which aligns well with many B2B target demographics.
  • Less Competition: With fewer businesses vying for the same keywords, costs per click (CPC) can be significantly lower on Bing, allowing for more efficient use of your advertising budget.
  • High Intent Users: Bing users often display high intent, making them valuable prospects for B2B services and solutions.
  • Integration with LinkedIn: Microsoft’s integration with LinkedIn ads allows for unprecedented targeting options based on company, job function, and industry, which is a boon for B2B advertisers.

How to Set Up a Bing Ads Campaign

Setting up a successful Bing Ads campaign involves careful planning and strategic execution. Here’s a detailed guide on how to effectively establish your campaign.

1. Define Your Objectives

The first step in setting up your Bing Ads campaign is to clearly define what you aim to achieve. Objectives can range from increasing brand awareness to generating leads or driving direct sales. Your specific goals will significantly influence every other aspect of your campaign, including the structure, the ad copy, and the bidding strategies you choose. For example, if brand awareness is your goal, you might focus on impressions and reach, whereas for sales, you’ll prioritize conversion rates and cost per acquisition (CPA).

2. Research Keywords

Keywords are the foundation of any PPC campaign. Use Bing’s Keyword Planner tool to find keywords that are relevant to your business and offerings. Bing’s audience can differ from Google’s, so it’s crucial to identify keywords that may be unique or more popular among Bing users. Prioritize long-tail keywords, which are longer and more specific phrases. These are often less competitive and better at attracting B2B decision-makers who know exactly what they’re looking for.

3. Segment Your Campaigns

Organizing your campaigns effectively is key to reaching the right audience. Segment your campaigns by different product lines or services. Within each campaign, create ad groups to target more specific audiences based on their needs, challenges, or pain points. This segmentation allows for more targeted ad copy and more relevant landing pages, significantly improving the chances of conversion.

4. Craft Compelling Ad Copy

Your ad copy should resonate with your target audience. Make sure it addresses the specific needs or problems of your B2B audience. Include a clear value proposition that distinguishes you from competitors, a direct call-to-action (CTA) encouraging users to take the next step, and utilize ad extensions. Ad extensions enhance your ad with additional information, such as contact details, links to specific parts of your website, or even product features, providing more avenues for engagement.

5. Optimize Landing Pages

The effectiveness of your ads is only as good as the landing pages they lead to. Your landing pages must be optimized for conversions. This includes having a compelling headline that matches the promise of the ad, concise and persuasive copy, and a clear, easy-to-find CTA. The design should be clean and professional, with a focus on encouraging the visitor to take action, whether that’s filling out a form, making a purchase, or another specific goal relevant to your campaign.

6. Set Your Bids and Budget

Bing Ads offers a variety of bidding strategies, giving you the flexibility to choose the one that best fits your campaign goals and budget. If you prefer control over your costs, manual bidding lets you set maximum cost-per-click (CPC) bids for your ads.

Alternatively, automated bidding strategies can adjust your bids in real-time to optimize for clicks or conversions, potentially saving time and increasing efficiency.

Begin with a conservative budget, then monitor and adjust based on your campaign’s performance data. Optimizing your spend will help ensure the best possible return on investment (ROI).

7. Leverage Advanced Strategies for Bing Ads

Advanced strategies for Bing Ads can significantly enhance your advertising effectiveness, especially when you employ targeted and iterative approaches tailored to your audience’s needs and behaviors. Here are some elaborations on the aforementioned strategies:

  • Leverage LinkedIn Targeting: For B2B, the ability to target by company, job function, and industry on Bing is invaluable. This precise targeting can drastically improve the quality of your leads.
  • Utilize Remarketing: Remarketing allows you to target users who have previously visited your site but did not convert. This can be particularly effective in the B2B space, where purchase decisions take longer and require more research.
  • Test and Optimize: Continuously test different aspects of your campaigns, from ad copy to landing pages. Use Bing’s reporting tools to track performance and make data-driven decisions to optimize your campaigns.

See these blog posts for more tips on advanced Bing Ads strategies:

8. Additional Tips

  • Monitor and Adjust: Regularly review your campaign performance and make adjustments as needed. This includes refining keywords, tweaking ad copy, and optimizing landing pages.
  • A/B Testing: Experiment with different ad copies, headlines, and images to identify what resonates best with your audience. A/B testing helps refine your approach over time.
  • Conversion Tracking: Implement conversion tracking to measure the success of your campaigns. This data is invaluable for making informed decisions and optimizing your strategy.

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Measuring Success with Bing Ads: Key Metrics

Measuring success in your marketing campaign involves a comprehensive analysis of various key performance indicators (KPIs) that directly correlate with your predetermined goals. The chosen metrics play a pivotal role in gauging the effectiveness of your efforts and ensuring a return on investment (ROI). Here’s what you need to pay attention to.

  • One important KPI is the click-through rate (CTR), which tells you how many people clicked on your ad after seeing it. A higher CTR means more people are interested in your campaign.
  • Another important metric is the conversion rate (CR), which shows the percentage of people who took the action you wanted them to take, like buying something or signing up.
  • Cost-related metrics like the cost per acquisition (CPA) tell you how much money you spent to get each new customer. This helps you use your budget wisely.
  • The return on ad spend (ROAS) is also important because it tells you how much money you made for every dollar you spent on advertising. A positive ROAS means your campaign is making a profit.

Bing’s analytics and conversion tracking tools are really helpful because they give you detailed information about how people are interacting with your campaign. This helps you see what’s working and what needs improvement.

How to Measure Bing Ads Campaign Performance

If you are new to online advertising or just starting with your ad campaigns, here are some basics on how you should measure Bing Ads conversion rate as well as other key metrics:

  1. Click-Through Rate (CTR):
    • CTR indicates the percentage of users who clicked on your ad after seeing it. A higher CTR generally reflects better ad relevance and engagement.
    • Formula: CTR = (Clicks / Impressions) × 100
    • Aim for a healthy CTR, but remember that it varies by industry and ad type.
  2. Conversion Rate:
    • Conversion rate measures the percentage of users who completed a desired action (e.g., filling out a form, making a purchase) after clicking your ad.
    • Formula: Conversion Rate = (Conversions / Clicks) × 100
    • Focus on improving your landing page experience to boost conversions.
  3. Cost per Acquisition (CPA):
    • CPA calculates the average cost of acquiring a single conversion (e.g., lead, sale).
    • Formula: CPA = Total Ad Spend / Conversions
    • Lower CPA indicates efficient spending.
  4. Return on Ad Spend (ROAS):
    • ROAS evaluates the revenue generated for every dollar spent on ads.
    • Formula: ROAS = (Revenue from Conversions / Ad Spend) × 100
    • Aim for a ROAS greater than 100% to ensure profitability.

Microsoft Advertising Tools for Campaign Performance Measurement

Microsoft Advertising provides a suite of tools designed to help you measure and optimize your digital marketing efforts effectively. These tools offer insights into various aspects of advertising campaigns, from the effectiveness of ad spend to the behaviors of website visitors. Here’s a more detailed look at each tool and its benefits.

Microsoft Advertising Web Analytics

  • Event Tracking: Integrate customer tracking on your website with your Microsoft Advertising account to monitor actions taken after an ad click.
  • Campaign Analytics: Utilize performance reports from Microsoft Advertising to assess campaign impact and make data-driven decisions.
  • Traffic Insights: Explore Webmaster Tools for a comprehensive understanding of your site’s traffic and optimize for better return on investment (ROI).

Bing Webmaster Tools

  • Organic Search Performance: This tool provides visibility into how a website performs in Bing’s organic search results. It includes data on search queries, rankings, and the pages that are driving traffic.
  • Keyword Insights: Identify which keywords are most effective in driving traffic to your site. This information is invaluable for optimizing both organic and paid search efforts.
  • Synergy Between Organic and Paid: Use Bing Webmaster Tools in conjunction with Microsoft Advertising to gain a comprehensive understanding of how your organic and paid search efforts complement each other. This dual approach can lead to more cohesive and effective overall search marketing strategies.

How to Run Bing Ads with the Power of Advanced Strategies

Bing Ads offers more than just basic keyword targeting. Here’s where you can truly unlock its potential:

1. Hyper-Focused Targeting

Bing Ads doesn’t stop at demographics. You can also target users using firmographics, which includes things like business size, industry, job title, etc. Think about it: you can target key decision-makers within your dream B2B client company. This level of granular targeting guarantees that your ads reach the right audience, boosting conversion rates.

2. Remarketing Magic

Sometimes website visitors do not convert right away. Bing Ads gives you the ability to remarket. By remarketing, you can target those visitors who have not yet made a purchase, signed up, or completed a form. You can show relevant ads, remind them of your products and services, and encourage them to return and complete the required action, whether it is a purchase, signup, or completing a form. With remarketing, you stay at the top of people’s minds and recapture those potential customers who may have missed out on you in the first place.

3. The LinkedIn Advantage

Bing Ads connects directly to LinkedIn Ads, which means you can reach out to the biggest professional network in the world. You can make the most of LinkedIn’s amazing targeting features to connect with important professionals. No matter if you’re promoting your B2B products, services, or solutions, this partnership allows you to connect with people who make important decisions, industry experts, and potential customers who are actively involved on LinkedIn.

Bing Ads FAQ for B2B Marketers

1. Do Bing Ads Work?

2. Are Bing Ads Effective?

Effectiveness depends on your goals. For B2B marketers, Microsoft Advertising offers several advantages:

  • Lower Competition: With fewer advertisers compared to Google, you may experience lower costs per click (CPC).
  • Audience Targeting: Microsoft Advertising allows precise audience targeting based on demographics, location, and device.
  • Search Partners: Microsoft Advertising extends beyond Bing itself, appearing on Yahoo search results pages. This broader reach benefits B2B campaigns.

3. Does Bing Have Merchant Ads?

does bing ads have merchant ads

Yes, Microsoft Advertising supports merchant ads. If you’re selling products or services, consider setting up a Microsoft Merchant Center account. This enables you to showcase your offerings directly in search results. Here’s how it works.

Microsoft Merchant Center

Creating a Store with Microsoft Merchant Center

To list your feed on Bing, start by creating a Microsoft Merchant Center store. Once created, your store will either be auto-approved, auto-rejected, or queued for manual review. The review process can take up to 5 days, but you’ll receive an email notification once a decision is made.

To create a store, follow these steps:

  • From the top menu, select Tools > Merchant Center > Manage stores (shopping cart icon). If you’re using the new Microsoft Advertising navigation, go to Tools > Merchant Center > Manage stores from the left navigation menu.
  • Choose Create store and provide store information, including a store description and SSL checkout selection.
  • Verify your site through either Bing Webmaster Tools or a Universal Event Tracking (UET) tag.

After successful store creation, you’ll be informed of the store status. Once approved, you can proceed to create your feed.

Important Considerations

  • Store Name: The store name is required and cannot be changed later. Accuracy matters because it appears in your product ads.
  • Destination URL: Ensure your destination URL has been verified using Bing Webmaster Tools or a UET tag. It must also comply with URL formatting rules (starting with a protocol like http:// or https://).
  • Content API: If you plan to use the content API for creating and sending feeds, you’ll need a tenant URL.
  • Potential Rejection Reasons: Be aware of potential store rejection reasons, such as unverified domains, adult advertiser identification, lack of presence in supported markets, and missing privacy policies.

4. Does Bing Ads Do Image and Video Ads?

does bing ads do image and video ads

While Microsoft Advertising primarily focuses on text ads, you cannot directly upload image ads. However, you can enhance your text ads with image extensions to provide visual appeal.

Bing Ads offers both Image Extensions and Multimedia Ads to enhance your advertising experience:

Image Extensions

Image Extensions allow you to incorporate compelling visuals into your ads, making them more eye-catching and informative. You can associate up to six images with each campaign or ad group. These images can point to unique URLs, providing additional context for your products or services.

Benefits of Image Extensions

  • Draw Attention: Stand out with bold ad images and stay competitive.
  • Relevant Traffic: Attract interested visitors by showcasing examples of your offerings.
  • Brand Recognition: Reinforce your brand identity with strong visuals.
  • Cost: Image Extensions are free to activate, and the cost per click is the same as clicks on an ad title or URL.

Multimedia Ads

  • What are they? Multimedia Ads combine your assets (images, headlines, and descriptions) with machine-learning technology to create attention-grabbing visual ads.
  • Placement: These ads appear prominently on the right rail (right side) of Microsoft Bing.com search pages.
  • Exclusivity: Only one Multimedia Ad is displayed per page, ensuring exclusivity for the advertiser.
  • Availability: Customers in several markets, including the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, and others, can already experience this new ad format.
  • Setup: Set up Multimedia Ads similarly to Responsive Search Ads, but now you can include rich visual assets alongside text assets.
  • Recommendations: To jump-start your Multimedia Ads, consider using automated recommendations based on existing image assets and text ads. These recommendations can be reviewed and applied within 7 days.

Video Ads on the Microsoft Audience Network

Video ads are now piloting on the Microsoft Audience Network in several countries, including the U.S., Canada, the U.K., France, Germany, Australia, and New Zealand.

Video Extensions

5. Do Bing Ads Show on Yahoo?

does bing ads show on yahoo

Microsoft Advertising does appear on Yahoo search results pages.

When you advertise with Microsoft Advertising, your ads can appear across the Microsoft Advertising Network, which includes both Microsoft sites and partner placements. Specifically:

  1. Microsoft Search Ads: These ads can appear with search results on sites such as Bing, AOL, Yahoo, DuckDuckGo, Ecosia, and other search partners.
  2. Microsoft Audience Ads: These ads can appear on sites like MSN, Microsoft Start, Microsoft Edge, Outlook, and publisher partners based on unique knowledge about potential customers.

In summary, whatever ads you display on Bing will indeed show up on Yahoo as well. Additionally, the average cost per click on the Yahoo and Bing ad network tends to be lower than Google Adwords.

6. Does Bing Offer Display Ads?

does bing offer display ads

Microsoft Advertising offers display advertising options. Use display ads to showcase your B2B brand across relevant websites and reach a broader audience:

  • Bing Ads offers a wide range of display advertising options to effectively target audiences.
  • Multimedia Ads provide a responsive format to showcase brands and products, appearing prominently on the right rail.
  • The Microsoft Audience Network expands reach beyond search engines, reaching billions online through partner placements on Bing, Yahoo, DuckDuckGo, and more.

7. Does Bing Ads Track Phone Calls?

does bing ads track phone calls

Yes, Microsoft Advertising supports call tracking. Implement call tracking to measure phone call conversions and optimize your campaigns accordingly.

Bing Ads provides a convenient way to track phone calls through its click-to-call ad tracking feature. Here’s how it works:

Click-to-Call Campaign Tool

By using the click-to-call campaign tool from Microsoft Advertising, you can make it easier for customers to contact you in your next campaign.

When someone clicks on the click-to-call option in your ad, it automatically forwards the call to your business’s main phone number.

The call is then tracked in the Microsoft Advertising call reporting tool, where you can view essential data:

  • Number of calls received.
  • Which campaigns and keywords drove the calls.
  • Other useful call-related information.
does bing allow affiliate links in ads

Microsoft Advertising allows affiliate links, but ensure compliance with their policies. Transparency is crucial.

Bing Ads allows users to include affiliate links within their ads. With nearly 20% of the total search volume worldwide and nearly a third in the United States, Bing Ads is a valuable resource for affiliate marketers who know how to set up and use advertising links effectively. If you’re looking to promote affiliate products, you can follow these steps:

Direct Linking

To include affiliate products in your ads, follow these steps:

  • First, ensure that auto-tagging is turned on in your account settings.
  • Then, add the URL from your affiliate link to the “Final URL” field.
  • Next, insert your tracking link into the tracking template, which is optional but recommended for tracking purposes.
  • Finally, test your ad by clicking on your tracking link or finding your ad on bing.com and clicking from there.

9. Does Bing Ads Have Smart Shopping?

does bing ads have smart shopping

Microsoft Advertising features smart shopping campaigns, combining automation and machine learning. Explore this option for efficient B2B advertising.

What Are Smart Shopping Campaigns?

Smart shopping campaigns are available in all markets where Microsoft shopping campaigns are available.

These campaigns combine traditional shopping campaigns, automated bidding, and targeting to deliver the right ad to the right customer at the right time—at scale.

By setting your business goals and targets, Smart Shopping campaigns automatically adjust bids and ad delivery to help optimize your campaigns, potentially increasing revenue and meeting return on ad spend (ROAS) targets.

Why Use Smart Shopping Campaigns?

  • Reach High-Value Customers: Smart shopping campaigns target customers who are likely to convert at higher revenue values.
  • Automated Optimization: These campaigns automate bids and ad delivery based on customer signals, creating a personalized shopping experience.
  • Simplified Management: To get started, you only need your product feed, a UET tag, and your business goals.

Key Considerations:

  • Local Inventory Ads: You can opt Smart Shopping campaigns into local inventory ads, but you cannot convert an existing local inventory ad campaign into a Smart Shopping campaign.
  • Google Import: You can use Google import to import your product feed and existing campaigns.
  • Reports: Smart Shopping campaigns have their own reports within Microsoft Advertising, although they do not include search terms, network, or audience data.
  • UET Tag: Make sure to create and add a UET tag to your website, including the additional code needed to track variable revenue data.
  • Product Feed: Submit your product feed or use an existing feed, updating data at least every 30 days.

Setting Up a Smart Shopping Campaign

  • Go to the Microsoft Advertising homepage, sign in to your account, and create a new campaign.
  • Select Sell products from your catalog and choose the campaign subtype Smart Shopping.
  • Enter your campaign name and set a campaign budget.

Unlock Your B2B Potential: Master Bing Ads Today

To get the most out of Bing Ads in B2B, you need to understand the unique benefits of the platform, personalize your campaigns to your exact specifications, and refine your strategies regularly based on your performance data.

Bing (Microsoft) Ads can open up new doors for your company to grow and generate leads in the B2B space. The secret is strategic planning, continuous optimization, and a deep understanding of your audience.

Follow these key principles to ensure that Bing Ads plays a vital role in your B2B online marketing efforts, producing real results for your business.

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