Content is King: An overview of the new and improved Bing Ads Blog

Here on the Bing Ads Blog, there have been quite a few updates, improvements and changes since I first started contributing content back in 2007. Although each one was a step forward from what the blog had been before, I can honestly say that I think this one is the best yet.

After months of planning, meetings, mock-ups, feedback loops, revisions and a tremendous amount of hard work and focus on the part of our illustrious web development team, I’m really excited to unveil our new clean, simple, clutter-free look and provide you with this walk-through of some of the functional updates.

Designed with you in mind

The North Star of every discussion we had while working on this revamp was to keep the design focus on what you, Dear Reader, come here for: our content. We wanted to make it as easy as possible for you to find the information you need as quickly as possible. With that in mind, you’ll see in the main navigation that we’ve simplified the number of main categories:

  • Clicking on “Newest”(the default) will display all blog posts as they were published in chronological order, regardless of topic.
  • Clicking on “Product News” will display all blog posts related to updates, improvements and news related to the Bing Ads platform.
  • Clicking on “Tips” will display all blog posts that were created with the intent of helping you optimize your campaigns, learn how to use new features and overall, get the most out of your Bing Ads campaigns.
  • Clicking on “Insights” will display all blog posts that provide industry/vertical insights that can help you prepare for seasonal opportunities, e.g. tax season, Mother’s Day, etc.


In addition to this more simplified category structure, we’ve also cut down and consolidated the more topic-specific tags you’ll find on individual blog posts. For example, if you’re reviewing information on Unified Device Targeting (UDT) and want to see what else has been written on this topic, simply click on the “targeting” tag to bring up everything that’s been written on the topic of targeting, which includes several other posts that covers UDT.

What you want, where you want it

Not only have we been hard at work to simplify the content discovery experience, we’ve also taken into account some of the more aesthetic aspects that will hopefully have a positive impact on your browsing experience.Bing Ads Blog Mobile

First, we’re happy to announce that the Bing Ads Blog is now optimized for mobile devices (YAY!!). No matter where you are or what device you’re on, you’ll be able to easily view our blog content with no concern about wonky formatting. If you’re on your phone now, go ahead and add a favorite for … there’s no time like the present!

In addition to our new mobile-friendliness, you’ll also notice that on the post summary pages, instead of the tiny snippet that used to give you just a few sentences from the start of the post, there’s now a much larger chunk of the intro to help give you a better idea of whether you want to keep reading or not. 

If you do decide to keep reading – and we hope you will -- you’ll notice that we’ve added a new “author box” to the end of each post. We’re still in the process of filling in all the information gaps for all of our current bloggers, but on many of them, you will find the author’s photo, name, professional title and if they’re active on Twitter, their personal Twitter handle.

Another new feature we hope you’ll enjoy is that whenever you scroll down far enough for the main navigation to disappear from the top of your page, a miniature version of that navigation will appear as a small bar across the top, helping you quickly return to any of the main category pages without having to scroll all the way back up to the top again.

For our international readers, we've added a quick and easy way to access the most locally-relevant content -- simply scroll down to the bottom of the Twitter feed embedded on the right rail of the page and you'll find a link to this page:

 Bing Ads Blog International

Connecting made easy

Whether you’re more interested in us staying in touch with you or in sharing what we’re publishing with your own networks, the new design has you covered.

Did you know that every week, we send out a Blog Digest email that provides links to all the posts that have been published since the previous week’s digest? It’s a great way to get an at-a-glance look at the latest news, tips and insights that comes right to your inbox. If you’re not receiving these emails and would like to, just enter your email address in the box on the right hand side of the page, right on top of our Twitter feed.

Speaking of Twitter, if you’re not already following us there (or on your network of choice), you’ll find all those handy icons to stay in touch at the top of the page in the colorful banner. You’ll also find sharing buttons at the top of each post, making it easy to instantly share whatever you find informative or interesting with your own social networks.

So, what do you think? Like it? Love it? Hate it? We’d love to hear your feedback, (the former more so than the latter, but hey… we can take constructive criticism) -- ping us on Twitter and let us know what you think!

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How to win at search marketing with Campaign Planner, and other enchanting features

(Quidditch for the wizarding world of Search Marketing)

To celebrate the launch of Campaign Planner in the UK, Canada and Australia,  we have invited a guest writer from England, ROI’ry Potter, to explain the rules of the magical world of search marketing.

Search marketing is an extremely animated but very popular semi-contact sport, played by the wizards and witches of the SEM community.

Anyone can play this sport, but the best at it have specialist chasers, who take care of the keywords; beaters, who manage ads; a keeper to make sure the scores are scored in the right hoops, and a seeker, targeting the precious Golden Snitch. The referee (alROI'ry Potterso responsible for the pitch) keeps score, and make sure that the game is played according to the rules.

The game is played on, or rather over, the Bing Ads Quidditch pitch - an oval-shaped clearly marked space, which when played globally measures 13.7BN searches long and 577M unique users wide. When played in the US, it measures at 5.9BN searches long, and 161M unique searchers wide. In the UK, the pitch size had reached a record 11% of its home-ground potential, at 644M searches long, and 26M unique searchers wide1. What a playing field! 

Once the balls are launched, the Quaffle must be tracked. Quaffles are text inputs, bewitched and variable. The chasers must predict the Quaffles carefully, keeping possession – scoring 10 points if they get it into a hoop. Whilst Quaffles can score points for the team, the game goes on until the Golden Snitch is caught by the seeker, at which point such momentous event is ‘converted’ into a mighty 150 points for the relevant seeker’s team. Thanks to the new Bing Ads conversion tracking technology, Universal Event Tracking, the Golden Snitch now has ‘flesh memory’, and via a recipe similar to that of the humble biscuit, will remember (by default for 30 days, but up to 90 days) the team who first touched it. This flesh memory means that seekers will be able to improve their Golden Snitch catching strategies in future games, using the upcoming Bing Ads Search Remarketing product. Note though that even the referees have to wear gloves when handling the Golden Snitch (according to published privacy policies).

It’s the beater’s job to control the Bludgers, which can throw the game and indeed players on or off course. A Bludger is traditionally a display URL, two lines of text equalling 71 characters in total and a title of 25 characters. The Bludger can be dynamically enriched by Bing Consumer Ratings and other similar, magical annotations. In recent times, the Bludgers have been embellished with up to four Enhanced Sitelinks, each with their own description, making them significantly more effective at influencing the game. Bludger strength significantly impacts the players’ ability to get the Quaffle into the appropriate hoop. If not closely watched, they’ll bash players about indiscriminately. A beater will have a Bludger A/B testing strategy in place to ensure clarity and proper representation on the pitch. 

It’s important to note that players are not allowed to stray over the boundaries of the pitch, but may fly as high as they want to achieve their goals. The referees have provided a number of key insights into flight levels, enabling keepers to carefully plan their take off. The latest is Campaign Planner, where you can get the latest game stats, including vertical insights, product insights and quaffle trending! You’ll now find it on the tools menu in the US, UK, Australia and Canada.

Other player stats can be found in Auction Insights – now available for all quidditch pitches. Auction insights lets you keep tabs on opposing teams. There’s also Bid Landscape, which allows you to model your expected altitude at various bids in a visual format, and the newly revamped Opportunities Tab for your game improvement strategies.

One’s choice of broom is also critical to success. Many professional players now use the newly launched Nimbus Bing Ads Editor 10.7 to manage their game efficiency,  to ensure that they are flying the fastest, and are best positioned to catch the precious Golden Snitch. Note Nimbus Bing Ads Editor models 10.4 and earlier have been retired as of the end of March.

If not carefully played, all sorts of fouls could be recorded by the referees in Search Marketing Quidditch, such as:

  • Blatching - flying towards other players with the intent to collide (and potentially breaching the intellectual property rights of others)
  • Bumphing - hitting Bludgers towards unknowing spectators with aggressive advertising messages
  • Stooging - hacking other players’ game strategies, or website.
  • Quaffle-pocking -  tampering in any way with the Quaffle’s relevancy to the team.

For the full game rules, please check our Quidditch Policies.

Finally, rest assured that your referees are spending a lot of time making sure the game equipment is fit for wizards. Check out the Broom Cupboard for more details on the latest enchanting updates.

1 comScore qSearch (custom), December 2014


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How Bing Ads Universal Event Tracking works with Yahoo Dot Tracking

Since launching Universal Event Tracking (UET) in October, we’ve been hearing from some of our Yahoo-managed customers about how UET integrates with Yahoo’s tracking solution, Dot. We want to provide a quick overview of the differences, integration points and capabilities of each solution for your understanding and clarity

What is Universal Event Tracking (UET)?

Universal Event Tracking is a simple and powerful way to track conversion and website activity from your Bing Ads campaigns. The same tracking tag will also serve as a Remarketing tag, getting you ready for Remarketing in Paid Search – coming soon.  UET tags provide conversion tracking and remarketing on the Yahoo Bing Network and is a replacement for our Campaign Analytics solution.

What is Dot?

Dot is a single tag solution from Yahoo that enables event tracking across Yahoo Gemini, Audience Ads, and Premium Display Ads, as well as enables retargeting users and building custom audiences with Yahoo’s audience buying solution. Yahoo’s Dot tag in itself does not provide any tracking functionality (conversion and goal tracking or remarketing) for the Yahoo Bing Network.

How does Bing Ads’ Universal Event Tracking integrate with Dot?

UET can be contained (i.e. wrapped) within Dot.  The integration and compatibility of UET with Dot is treated like a container tag.  If a UET tag is placed within the Yahoo Dot tag, an advertiser will get both the benefits of Yahoo tracking and Yahoo Bing Network tracking. UET and Dot are separate entities and the management of each solution will take place in their respective interfaces.

How do I integrate UET with Dot?

Your Yahoo account team will make the backend connection to contain UET within Dot.  However, you will still be required to create goals and tags within Bing Ads.  Please reach out to your respective Yahoo account team for this implementation method, which is only available to our Yahoo managed customers. More details about how to integrate UET with Dot can be found here.

What are the ways I can implement Universal Event Tracking so I’m ready for Remarketing and so I can get tracking for my Bing Ads campaigns?

There are two potential ways an advertiser can implement UET and each has its pros and cons.

For more on tag management solutions, please refer to our FAQs.

Is it mandatory for me to implement Dot in order to receive tracking for my Bing Ads campaigns and be enabled for Remarketing?

No, UET tags provide conversion tracking and remarketing capabilities for Bing Ads. As long as you implement UET, you will receive all the benefits that UET provides.

Additional resources

 Questions? Comments? Let us know!

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Bing Ads Trademark Policy: Market by market variations for international advertisers

From an editorial perspective, trademark is one of the most common complaints, with many excellent blogs already available on the topic. In particular, What's in a Brand Name? Using Trademarks and Copyrights in Your Advertising provides an informative overview of policy and best practice, from the perspective of an advertiser uploading their advertisements.

At the onset, please be advised that it is the advertiser’s responsibility to ensure that the use of keywords and ad content, including trademarks and logos, does not infringe or violate the intellectual property rights of others. If a trademark owner is concerned that their trademark is being used improperly in ad text, the owner should first contact the advertiser directly to address the issue. Please note we do not act as mediators for IP dispute resolution purposes.

Please become familiar with our Intellectual property policies by visiting that page for the market you're in -- in the upper right hand corner of this site, you can adjust your market/language and then look for "Bing Ads policies" under the "Network quality" category within the "How to" drop down menu (you'll find the US version here and the UK version here).

  • In this article, our aim is to examine the opposite side of the coin, namely situations in which another advertiser may bid on a different company’s brand terms
  • As well as a more in depth look, with concrete examples, of the differences in trademark policy in the European markets.


Differences in Trademark Policy in European Markets

Bing Ads trademark policy may differ depending on the market.

We will review complaints concerning advertisers who use brand terms belonging to third parties in the ad copy, taking into account what may constitute “fair use” of the brand terms (we will examine what “fair use” entails later in the article). This is enforced in all markets.


Contoso Coffee Shop (an advertiser with Bing Ads) is using Fourth Coffee Shop’s brand term in the ad copy with no relevant content on the landing page and with a similar product offered. This behaviour is disallowed:

Contoso Coffee Shop

Better than Fourth Coffee Shop

However, in some European markets, we will not review requests concerning advertisers that may choose to bid on another company’s brand term e.g. Contoso Coffee Shop may bid on the keyword “Fourth Coffee Shop”. The list of market to which this applies is as follows: Spain, The Netherlands, Denmark, Finland, Sweden, Norway, Germany, Austria and Switzerland, the US and Canada (including the French language Canadian market).

Conversely, there are markets that do accept requests concerning advertisers who bid on other companies’ brand terms i.e. Contoso Coffee Shop bidding on “Fourth Coffee Shop." Those markets include France, Italy, the Republic of Ireland and the United Kingdom, Australia, Brazil, Hong Kong, Indonesia, New Zealand, Singapore and Taiwan.

What constitutes fair use?

On the face of it, the decisions surrounding trademark use in ad copy seem relatively routine, but there are many instances in which usage could constitute a legitimate use of a brand term in paid search advertising. The subsequent non-exhaustive examples highlight this:

  • Use of a trademark by a reseller of authentic goods or services

Contoso Phones, an authorised reseller of The Phone Company’s products, is bidding on their brand terms. This approach is compliant as The Phone Company products are available to buy on Contoso Phones’ website

Contoso Phones

Your premiere one-stop shop for phones and tablets, all providers. Sale on all The Phone Company products!

  • Informational websites about goods or services, such as product reviews

Contoso Food Finder is a website that offers non-commercial information (e.g. there are no purchase options). This site offers information about Fourth Coffee Shop that is helpful to users.

Contoso Food Finder

Fourth Coffee Shop – Cafés in your area

  • Ordinary dictionary use of a term

Contoso Windows is bidding on the term “windows”, with the ad referring to actual windows, and not the Microsoft product (brand) Windows.

Contoso Windows

Affordable window cleaners in your area

Similarly, Contoso Studios is bidding on the term “fine art”, the ad is referring to actual fine art, and not the brand term School of Fine Art.

Contoso Studios

Fine art by respected local artists

  • Comparative advertising

The Contoso Insurance Compare site offers a service to users by providing helpful information. Claims made by this type of site would need to be supported by independent research to attest to their veracity.

Contoso Insurance Compare

Find the best insurance for you

So, there you have it! If you have run through this check list and still believe that the usage of your brand terms in paid search advertising is in violation of our policies, you can escalate your complaint via the relevant Bing Ads intellectual property concern form.

As a reminder, we do not act as mediators for trademark or other IP disputes between advertisers. As a first step we encourage you to contact the other party to solve the issue directly with them.

I hope I’ve helped clarify when the use of trademark terms in ad copy and at keyword level is permitted.

Comments? Questions? Let us know!

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