Microsoft Tries to ‘Bing It On’ in Australia


Recently I had the pleasure of flying to Sydney as a guest of Microsoft who last month launched
Bing Ads into Australia.

Bing are making a long-term investment in driving the future of search and search advertising in Australia and New Zealand and claim that nearly 5.5 million Australians use Bing every month.

It was a closed-door panel discussion, with just a dozen of us present including Microsoft execs that had flown in from Seattle, Asia Pacific execs from Microsoft and in particular the Bing team, as well as Marin Software Australia (whose software powers over 1,900 companies, including many of the world’s largest interactive agencies and advertisers), Sensis and myself.

 

Wisely Microsoft were looking for feedback from people who had a deep understanding of the small business and online advertising environment in the Australian market, to better understand the competitive landscape here in Australia and to generally gain local intelligence and further develop their go to market strategy.

 

It was clear from the meeting and interactions with the execs present that Bing is under no illusions when it comes to the task ahead. They are well aware that Google has a major market share in Australia – approximately 86%. In comparison, in America Google has approx. 60% market share, with Yahoo having 11% and Bing enjoying another 18%.

 

Bing Ads are already in 20+ markets worldwide and in most cases Bing and Yahoo have partnered to take on the behemoth that is Google however in Australia navigating this territory is not so straight forward.

 

It’s, well, complicated….

Back in 2006, Yahoo partnered with Channel 7 to create a new content and search entity, Yahoo!7 and subsequently MSN (now Bing) did a deal with Channel 9. Suffice to say, when it comes to getting Yahoo and Bing together in Australia, it’s well…complicated, and presents territorial challenges for Bing when it comes to breaking into the Aussie market.

 
Despite all this, the exciting opportunity for business owners in Australia is that Bing is starting from ground zero, and with Bing Ads effectively being an auction sight, right now bids are low so now is an ideal time to sign up for a Bing account and enjoy some low cost per clicks. Of course Bing are making it as easy as possible for people to get started, with the ability to import Google AdWords campaigns into your Bing Ads account and plenty of customer support.

 

Having worked in this space for a number of years, the team and myself have not actually seen the cost per click so low since back in the early days. I’m talking as little as 10 cents per click on some competitive keywords, and whilst it might only be 4% of the market currently, the conversion rate is generally very good.

 

So if you want to see good bang for your buck, give it a go, and talk to us about how you might get started up.

 

 

But who actually uses Bing?

 

You may rightfully ask, “but who actually uses Bing??” After all, more often than not you’ll hear people say that they ‘Google it’ as opposed to ‘Bing it’. There are still quite a few Hotmail users out there and your Bing ads have the potential to feature around the frame of the Hotmail user.

 

Not only that but if you’ve ever searched for something in Facebook – a product, place, person etc., and Facebook doesn’t retrieve the results you are looking for, you may have noticed that Bing actually supplies the alternative results which is not a bad positioning for your business by default.


At the end of the day the one thing the guest panel present at the session were unanimous in was that Aussies love an underdog. It’s not healthy in any marketplace to have someone with the level of market share that Google currently has so it would certainly be nice to see the playing field evened out, even just a little bit. Only time will tell if Bing really can Bing It On.



Join Bing and The Creative Collective on a complimentary lunch time webinar on Friday 11 October, 12:30pm and learn more about the opportunity to advertise your business on Bing. For all guests who attend the webinar, we will provide you with a sign-up coupon worth AU$50 free
advertising* on Bing Ads!

Register Now!

 

 

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