This week, Microsoft announced a complete rebrand of their Pay Per Click advertising program Microsoft adCenter, renaming it Bing Ads.
The rebrand comes with a few new features and the retirement of some existing features. Bing Ads features a new web interface, improved ad rotation controls, and agency tools that make it easier for agencies to manage multiple accounts, similar to the My Client Center offered by Google AdWords.
As part of the rollout, the Microsoft Network has been renamed the Yahoo! Bing Network. Some of the new features include Editorial Exceptions and the Exceptions API, which allows advertisers better control over requesting exceptions to resolve editorial disapprovals more quickly.
If you’re an existing Microsoft adCenter customer, you don’t need to do anything – your interface has automatically been updated. If you are new to Bing Ads, you can sign up here.
I’ve been using Google AdWords for years and feel quite confident with the program, however it has literally taken me years to learn all the features and how to tweak things for better results and more conversions. I’ve just started using Microsoft adCenter recently and I’m finding it hard going. There just seem to be so many features I’m unfamiliar with and even getting my head around the interface is a struggle after so many years of AdWords exposure.
Do you offer a course at Search Engine College that is solely dedicated to MS adCenter?
We offer two courses in Pay Per Click Marketing – a PPC Starter course and a PPC Advanced course, however while both courses do have lessons dedicated to MS adCenter, the bulk of the lessons cover all aspects of PPC marketing. If you’re looking for something more granular in terms of using MS adCenter, you should check out their adCenter Training Center which contains around 35 training videos designed to teach you all aspects of using adCenter. You can even sign up to take the Accredited Professional Exam when you’re finished.
In case you’re not already aware, Google also offers similar video training for AdWords plus detailed lesson modules via the AdWords Learning Center.
Microsoft and Yahoo announced today that their planned Search Alliance has been given the go-ahead by the U.S. Department of Justice and the European Commission without any restrictions.
The exact implementation is yet to be announced, but will involve Yahoo shifting their organic and paid search operations to Microsoft. Yahoo will then display primary search results from Bing and enhance them with Yahoo content.
From Yahoo’s official press release:
“Implementation of the deal is expected to begin in the coming days and will involve transitioning Yahoo!’s algorithmic and paid search platforms to Microsoft, with Yahoo! becoming the exclusive relationship sales force for both companies’ premium search advertisers globally. Once the transition is completed, the companies’ unified search marketplace will deliver improved innovation for consumers, better volume and efficiency for advertisers and better monetization opportunities for web publishers through a platform that contains a larger pool of search queries.”
Advertising for both companies will be managed by Microsoft’s adCenter platform (meaning the closure of Yahoo Search Marketing) and prices for all search ads will be set by AdCenter’s automated auction process.
According to a memo sent to all Yahoo advertisers today:
- Yahoo Search Marketing advertisers will log into one place – Microsoft’s adCenter – to manage campaigns, for greater efficiency and a better ROI.
- Yahoo is hoping to transition advertisers and partners in the U.S. prior to October 2010, but may wait until 2011 for efficiency reasons.
- Advertisers will reach users on Yahoo! and Microsoft sites as well as other premium partner sites, with a single buy on adCenter.
- Yahoo will give Search Marketing advertisers 3 months warning of any changes to take place.
The two search giants have created a web site dedicated to the partnership and Yahoo has implemented a Transition Center for advertisers.
What does it mean for the search industry? To use a silly dinosaur analogy, (because who doesn’t like those?), it means that Bing the Triceratops and Yahoo the Brontosaurus have just combined to become an aggressive Tyrannosaurus Rex that’s going on a hunt for the Google Gigantosaurus.
Should be quite a spectacle.
If you’re a blogger in the search industry, you’re probably still reeling from the jaw-dropping news that broke on Saturday: Microsoft has made a 45 billion bid to purchase Yahoo.
So if this rather ambitious acquisition proceeds, what exactly will this mean for the search industry? There is a lot of speculation right now that it will never happen, but let’s just imagine it did.
For starters, I’m sure MS would scrap their existing PPC offering AdCenter and incorporate the better known Yahoo Search Marketing system under their own brand. They would also likely scrap Yahoo’s Directory and combine the Yahoo search data with their own Live Search results to create a super search engine of sorts, running on their own algorithm.
The new Microhoo could be a definite threat to Google. Just how the acquisition could or should proceed is perhaps the most interesting part of the whole deal. There are bound to be market monopoly issues at stake. You can bet both the Federal Trade Commission and the Federal Communications Commission are watching the unfolding saga very closely.
Meanwhile reactions from bloggers in the search industry are fun to watch.
Have you noticed that Search Engine Marketing education seems to be the flavor of the month right now? Look at all the education-related events that have happened in the past month:
- Matt Spiegel of Search Engine Watch talked about the biggest crisis in SEM: the lack of qualified search marketers and the need for further education and internships to address this crisis.
- We heard about the launch of Market Motive, a new, subscription-based training website founded by Michael Stebbins and John Marshall, both formerly from ClickTracks and Avinash Kaushik, a web analytics guru.
- Search Marketing Now announced a SEM Basics training webinar to be held this month.
- Search Engine Strategies announced SEM training classes will follow their Chicago conference this month.
- SEOmoz held a SEM training seminar at the University of Washington. (Ok this occurred in October, but it was still recent enough to warrant inclusion).
- The eMarketing TalkShow held a webcast about the unlimited career opportunities available to persons with SEM training and experience.
- Search Engine Watch decided to launch a regular column called SEM.edu dedicated to SEM training and education.
- Microsoft announce their training and accreditation program for Microsoft adCenter called adExcellence.
It’s great to see the industry better addressing the two problems that have plagued it for years: the lack of trained professionals and the lack of educational options for webmasters wanting to learn SEO/SEM.
Of course my Search Engine College colleagues and I recognized this in 2004 with the launch of our courses, but I digress!