Confidence in automation comes from Jackson’s clear strategy to control a high-volume campaign through a single metric that matters. That same confidence has enabled him to take Younited’s search advertising beyond the major search engines—and meet credit searchers wherever they are searching online. Doing so involved extending the campaign to Microsoft Advertising search partners. Our consumer research shows that 40% of buyers now use multiple search engines to complete their personal tasks.
First though, Younited had to overcome the misgivings of its previous experience of syndicated search. “It tends to be a human response that if you’ve tried something once and it didn’t work, you never try it again,” says Jackson. “That was the case with Younited’s historical experience of Microsoft Advertising search partners. However, I could see that Microsoft Advertising was working for us, delivering really good results—and I wanted a way to scale that channel while working within the same high-traffic keywords.”
Jackson used the same guiding light of algorithms around a target CPA to optimize for syndicated traffic. “If we were still doing everything manually, then I probably wouldn’t have tried it—but when I saw how well target CPA was working on Microsoft Advertising, I knew I could trust that approach to optimize the campaign for me. Being able to mix automation and Microsoft Advertising search partners led me towards revisiting the channel.”
It was a decision that delivered an almost immediate impact. “Within a couple of days, I was seeing more conversions—and when I did my monthly offline reporting, I could see that those conversions from Microsoft Advertising search partners were delivering financed loans at a higher ratio than other search channels,” says Jackson. “We saw a 16% incremental increase in conversions, and we could see that happening at a 63% lower CPA.” With the addition of the search partner traffic, the campaign drove 32% incremental sales revenue.
The combined impact of restructuring Younited’s Microsoft Advertising campaign and then extending it through search partners has established Microsoft as more than just another search channel. “Our main metrics are growth and cost, and Microsoft is so efficient that it’s bringing our overall cost down,” says Jackson. “It’s meant that we’re activating this strategy more widely and rolling it out internationally as well. We’ve basically hit on a goldmine.”