At the most basic level, Bing Ads work like Google AdWords. So if you’re familiar with the concept of PPC in general, you can probably skip over some of this article.
Essentially, PPC ads are ‘Pay Per Click’ ads. That means that you will literally be paying per click – paying for each person who clicks on one of your adverts. The reason that this is such good news is that you will never pay anything for a campaign that was a complete failure. If you create an advertising campaign for Bing and not one person looks at it, then it will cost you literally nothing.
What this also means is that you can precisely calculate the cost of each visitor to your site. This is important because you can then use that information to calculate how much each customer is worth and thereby start making very accurate projections about your earnings/identifying the best ways to spend your money.
First, you define your CPC or ‘Cost Per Click’ which is going to be the maximum amount of money you are willing to spend for each new visitor. You’ll probably want to keep this fairly low – the most that brands will generally tend to spend is up to $2 but even that is unusual. Generally, though, you’ll want to set this a bit lower and your average will probably come in around 10-20cents.
The next thing to do is to set your daily budget. Once the accumulated clicks you’ve received reach this amount, they will then stop and you won’t spend any more money. So in theory, if you set your CPC to 20 cents and you set your daily spend to $20, that should mean you get 100 visits to your site for that amount.
But things get a little more complicated seeing as you don’t tend to spend the full amount of your CPC. That’s because there’s a bidding system that takes place which means you’ll offer to spend a lot less. The way this works is simple: if there are two or more adverts both competing for the same space on Bing, then they will enter into a ‘bidding war’.
The ad with the highest CPC will be the one that wins and gets shown but the owner of that Ad will only be charged the minimum amount that it needed to win. The easiest way to understand this is to think of it just like eBay – on eBay, you can set your maximum bid but you’ll only end up paying $1 more than the next highest bidder.
The same is true with most PPC campaigns and that’s why you end up spending 33.5% less on Bing vs Google – because the lower amount of competition means that your CPC won’t be as likely to get driven up. And of course, you also need to consider that your ads will be shown a lot to people who don’t click.
You don’t pay anything for these ads but that doesn’t mean they’re worthless to you because you’ll still be getting exposure and you’ll still be building your brand!
The other thing that most PPC ad networks have in common is the ability to ‘target’ a specific demographic. This means that you can identify who your ‘buyer persona’ is and profile your ideal customer and from there, then target that person specifically with your adverts.
The way you do this with both Bing Ads and Google AdWords is by targeting search terms. When you pay for these ads, you are literally putting your adverts on the SERPs relating to particular search terms. You do this by choosing a keyword, or ‘keyphrase’, which is going to be the thing that you want people to search for in order to find your site.
So for example, if you were selling a hat, your ‘keyphrase’ would probably be ‘buy a hat online’ or ‘cheap hats’ etc. This is now a targeted ad because it lets you advertise specifically to people who are looking to buy the thing you have. That means they will fit within your target audience and actually, this makes them ‘qualified leads’.
Another way this might work is by going the slightly longer-term route and focussing on search terms related to interests. You might have a site where you blog about fitness for example and sell supplements and training clothing. In this case, your keyword might be ‘how to lose weight’ or ‘fitness articles’.
A good keyword is going to be one that is both popular with your specific target audience and that is not overly competitive. We’ll look at this in more detail in the subsequent articles.
Rounding out the ‘holy trinity’ of PPC networks is Facebook Ads. Facebook Ads is similar to Google AdWords or Bing Ads in terms of being PPC but the difference is in where the ads are shown and how they are targeted. As you might have guessed, Facebook Ads are shown on Facebook and will appear in the home feed and sidebars while you are browsing.
These then show ads that are once again targeted to the person using Facebook but the way this differs is that the ads are targeted based on information that the user has given Facebook – information such as their age, their sex, their marital status, their location, and even their hobbies and interests.
This allows you to even more precisely target the right person but not necessarily at the right time when they’re looking for products. When someone is browsing Facebook to catch up with their friends, they’re more likely to just be frustrated to see adverts popping up.
With all this in mind, Facebook Ads is another useful platform to add to your campaign in conjunction with Bing and Google AdWords – just make sure you’re using the right ads for the right location!