Reaching Your Audience Beyond Search with Bing Intent Ads

Bing Intent Ads are a form of native advertising allowing placements within page content, including both text and imagery. These ads offer potential to reach your audience beyond search results on select Microsoft properties, including signals beyond search activity.

In this article, we’ll cover setting up Intent Ads, targeting options, and reporting on results.

Where Bing Intent Ads Appear

According to Bing, Intent Ads appear on select MSN pages, including the homepage as well as individual articles. Ads also can show within Outlook so potentially can reach users viewing their email accounts.

Targeting includes “search history, browse history, page content, and demographic information” as well as applying any existing targeting settings in your ad groups (including keywords and audiences).

Now, let’s walk through setting up Intent Ads.

Adding an Image Ad Extension

You’ll want to start by uploading an image extension to associate with ads. Go to the Ad Extensions tab and choose Image Extension. From here, you can upload an image to use.

Note specs for image ad extensions:

  • JPEG, PNG, and GIF (animation not accepted)
  • Must be at least 760 x 400 pixels and at most 1900 x 1000 pixels
  • Optimal dimensions: 1200 x 628 pixels

You can customize cropping for the image at various sizes for which it will potentially display or upload different versions for each size. In addition, you can add a title, description, and URL to associate with the image.

Creating a Bing Intent Ad

To create the actual Intent Ad, you’ll go through the process of making a regular Expanded Text Ad. Navigate to your desired ad group and click “Create Ad” to start.

When writing the actual copy, keep in mind the context in which it will be appearing. Instead of appearing in search results as the answer to a user’s query, it will show in the midst of content to grab the viewer’s attention.

Character limits are as follows:

  • Titles (2 required): 30 characters each
  • Ad text: 80 characters
  • URL paths (up to 2 allowed but not required): 15 characters each
  • Final URL: 67 characters: including prefix (www), suffix (.com), and any URL paths

Select “Prefer native ad format” to indicate to Bing that you’d like this ad to show in a native placement. You’ll then see an example of how the ad may appear. Unfortunately, in our test, the image didn’t render properly, but it should pull in the associated image extension. Note that the ad can potentially display in a variety of formats with or without the image.

Native Bid Adjustments

By default, all ad groups are eligible to show both on the search network and native ad placements. However, both campaign and ad group settings include a native ad bid adjustment to increase or decrease the likelihood of showing in a native placement.

Note that you can apply this on a campaign level or uncheck “Use my campaign settings” to apply to an individual ad group. You can set this as low as -100% (to opt out completely) or as high as 900%. While you can’t opt out of the search network entirely, you can effectively bid at such a low level that you’d be placed out of the majority of search auctions while increasing the bid percentage for native ads.

Seeing Results

Results for Intent Ads will be shown in the Native Ads summary row when looking at data in the main Bing Ads interface. You can also include native performance data in manual reports by including the “Ad Distribution” column.

Learn More About Bing Intent Ads

For more on Intent Ads, see the following resources from Microsoft:

Have you tried Bing Intent Ads? What results have you seen so far? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

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