Microsoft revises multi-channel advertising approach and discontinues bid modifiers for audience ads

Microsoft revises multi-channel advertising approach and discontinues bid modifiers for audience ads

Together, Microsoft says their Search and Audience networks can reach over a billion people.

Microsoft has revised its multi-channel strategy, which will be accessible for all advertisers on February 21st. Additionally, the audience ad bid modifier will no longer be visible in your campaign settings.

Microsoft says “Instead of using positive or negative bid modifiers to manually adjust participation in the audience network, all you need to do is define your goals, and Microsoft Advertising will fully optimize your campaigns across channels. This will help you more easily manage your campaigns and find the best users in every auction to drive a strong ROI.”

Driving new changes. Microsoft conducted research on accounts utilizing both search and audience traffic and showed that advertisers get the best results by combining their efforts on Microsoft Search and the Audience Network. Their findings reveal that people who view a brand’s ad on both networks visit the website 2.6 times more frequently compared to those who only see the ad on search. Microsoft says this increased website traffic also leads to higher conversion rates, with users converting 6.6 times more frequently. This highlights the importance of utilizing both search and audience together, as reaching the same user through multiple channels can increase engagement and sales.

Early testing. Microsoft has been piloting the new multi-channel approach over the past year. “After strong beta results, we’re rolling out this experience to all advertisers. Our results show that accounts already using multi-channel management have seen 14% higher conversion rates at 21% lower cost per acquisition (CPA).”

More Microsoft changes and updates. Microsoft has been making an effort to improve its ad platform significantly. Last year they announced ambitious plans to double the size of its ad business to $20 billion, though no specific timeframe was given.

But some brands are still unsure. Their FY23Q2 earnings reported that advertising spend declined slightly more than expected. Mass layoffs also impacted about 5% of its 220,000 workers. But despite a mediocre performance, ad revenue still increased by 5%, and LinkedIn revenue was up 14%.

It could be possible that the number of changes and updates Microsoft has made over the last year was enough to increase revenue. With Google continuing to push automation and taking away advertisers’ control, advertisers could look at Microsoft as a hail Mary.

Dig deeper. You can read the announcement from Microsoft here.

Why we care. Microsoft provides innovative tools, channels, and creative options to advertisers. Utilizing both search and audience together could lead to higher performance and drive lift in your campaigns. However, without more widespread adoption of the platform, these advancements may not reach their full potential.

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