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Thursday 30th May 2019

Unlocking Bing – Why Bing Ads Deserves Your Time & Money

Sheffield Tap

Arianne Donoghue

Our fourth Sheffield DM meetup was held on Thursday 30th May at our regular venue of The Sheffield Tap. Guests who sacrificed time in the glorious sunshine to attend received a fantastic talk by Arianne Donoghue, Strategy Director at Epiphany Search, focused on the underdog of search engine marketing - Bing.

Beyond sharing how fabulous she looks in teal, Arianne’s talk stressed how we, as marketers, have most likely ruined the internet.

Scarily, across all of their web properties, Google are now responsible for around 90% of web traffic! And we let it happen.

As the ones responsible, it is down to us to be actively resisting Google’s monopoly on search by broadening our marketing playbooks. In fact, it would probably make our lives easier to do so. Have you ever tried to get in touch with Google support? It’s a nightmare!

Arianne’s talk developed to discuss how as marketers and advertisers, we can make alternative choices, such as Bing!

Arianne argued that as advertisers, we have a choice where to spend our budgets, and if we want the internet to remain free, open and unbiased, we essentially have an obligation to support Bing - both as consumers and professionals.

Arianne’s talk went on to investigate the bad rep that Bing has developed in the past and the general opinion that they provide worse search results to Google. Whilst this was perhaps true in the past, over the ten years since Bing (previously Live Search) launched it has developed a series of competitive advantages over Google, including:

  • Delivering search results with unbiased perspectives
  • Smart object-detection in image searches
  • Smart predictions using web and social data (think election or football result predictions)
  • Highly visual search results, rich features and knowledge panels
  • Rewards for using Bing, redeemable for Microsoft, Xbox, M&S vouchers and more.

In fact, in a series of blind tests removing all branding from the search results, most users can’t tell the difference between Google and Bing, and when they can, they prefer Bing’s results!

Echoing the slide John shared with us at Sheffield DM Vol#3, as marketers were incredibly biased towards what we perceive to be true compared to the average person.

With Bing traffic coming from a whole series of Microsoft platforms as well as third-party partners and devices (including Amazon, AOL, and Gumtree), it’s now possible to reach over 20% of the UK search market through Bing.

Plus, being underutilised means Bing traffic is on average 15% cheaper, 40% more likely to click, and has a 73% higher average order value.

Who wouldn’t say yes to all of that?

Ultimately, Arianne’s core takeaway was, as marketers, don’t think about Bing search as being an alternative to Google search. Instead view it as just another location to reach your audience, just how you combine Facebook, Pinterest or any other platform within your digital marketing mix.

Support diversity on the web. Use Bing!

Join us next time!

As usual, we’d like to extend a huge thank you to Arianne Donoghue for creating and delivering an inspiring talk, and to everyone who joined us.

The next Sheffield DM will be taking place in July, with an exact date still to be confirmed. Register for updates with the form at the bottom of the page, follow us on Twitter @SheffieldDM or join us on Sheffield Digital Slack in the #sheffielddm channel to stay in the loop.

Catch you there!

Arianne Donoghue

Strategy Director at Epiphany

Having started off her digital career client side over a decade ago, Arianne has worked for both agencies and brands in-house, specialising in paid media for companies such as Thomas Cook, Mamas & Papas and ASDA. She is now back agency side doing all things digital strategy. A regular on the conference and training scene, she’s also an editor and contributor at popular site State of Digital.