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Does it really matter if a cruise ship was raised “cage-free”?

A cruise ship on the water.

Over the last few months, we have been busy developing ad solutions for vertical industries. We believe that each sector has its own peculiarities, and a dedicated approach to developing vertical ad formats can yield even better results for our clients.

The needs of a customer searching for milk and eggs are profoundly different from a holidaymaker looking for inspiration for a cruise, and so is the information they seek. While shopping for groceries, a customer might look at the store’s location, organic attributes, or ethical practices as important points. Meanwhile, a cruise enthusiast will want to know about the departure and destination ports or read peer reviews, less if that cruise ship was raised “cage-free”.

Exclusive to Microsoft Advertising, Cruise Ads are the latest in a series of vertical-specific ad formats created to meet the unique needs of industries like Travel Experiences (Tours and Activities Ads), Financial Services (Credit Card Ads), and Automotive (Automotive Ads).

This new vertical ad solution leverages search intent data and a deep understanding of users’ needs to offer advertisers a richer ad experience to attract cruise enthusiasts. Balancing what is good for our users with what is important for our clients led us to create an ad format which reflects the uniqueness of the cruise industry.

Why use Cruise Ads?

Cruise Ads are rich and eye-catching ad solutions that showcase images with timely and relevant information like cruise length, excursions offered, and pricing right at the point of the search. Such richness can drive tourers’ engagement even before the first click is made, which could also shorten the customer journey—from search to booking—and yield better results for advertisers.

How Cruise Ads help advertisers

  • Inspire travelers and target them when they’re planning a cruise.
  • Use strong intent signals to deliver a richer and more targeted ad experience.
  • Get better results and more value.
  • Drive high-quality clicks.
  • Reach largely new volume not covered by text ads.
  • Save time with easy-to-set-up feeds, and hands-off management, without needing to provide keywords.

How Cruise Ads work

Cruise Ads use search intent and dynamically-generated elements to deliver relevant ad experiences based on data feeds. Advertiser feed offers are automatically matched to queries without a need for keywords. Advertisers can also use negative keywords for optimization.

Snapshot of the Cruise Ads schema.

Cruise Ads appear on the right rail of Microsoft Bing search results and run alongside mainline text ad placements. These ads can be triggered by queries like cruise name, location, length, and more.

Snapshot of an example of Cruise Ads in a search results page view.

This way, Cruise Ads can identify new search trends and capture new business opportunities, providing the information that is included in the feed. The best results come from feed files that contain business data like cruise duration, transportation options, and excursions searchers will be considering. All advertisers have to do is fill in the schema.

Get started today

Contact your Microsoft Advertising representative or complete this form to request to participate in the open beta. Cruise Ads are currently only available to advertisers targeting customers in the U.S. The next update to Cruise Ads, slated for spring 2022, is expected to make more fields visible in the ads.

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