You may remember that Google recently started testing large banner ads on branded searches. It raised quite a stir in the online community, mostly because it seemed that Google blatantly broke an older promise to never show banner ads. But, Bing is taking branded search result ads to the next level.
Larry Kim reports that last week, at the Bing Ads Next conference, Bing Ads announced their new ad format for exact match keyword searches, specifically those done within the latest Windows 8 update. Instead of a relatively small banner ad, Bing Ads are rolling out Bing Hero Ads, a full landing-page like layout that aggressively promotes the exact brand.
Just as with Google’s banner ads, Bing Hero Ads are only starting with a small number of prominent brand advertisers, such as Disney, Home Depot, Land Rover, and Volkswagen. It will also be a while before you can expect to see Hero Ads on your average search. For the moment, they are only appearing in a small selection of searches done in Windows 8.1 within the US.
It will be interesting to see how the public reacts to these types of branded semi-landing pages. Google’s banner ads looked fairly customized for each brand, , and only take up a relatively small amount of on-page real estate. A full-page ad experience for exact match branded searches may be welcomed as a quick and efficient way to connect with the brand searchers are looking for. It is also possible that consumers will be turned off by the seemingly uniform ad experience.
The one clear advantage Bing’s Hero Ads have over Google’s banner ads is their ability to deep link directly to a larger amount of pages on a site. They offer links such as “contact us”, “find a store” and “request a quote” which speed up users experiences and allow them to convert more quickly.