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March 2022: Market expansion and other product updates

A young woman sits on a couch in a living room and smiles while using a laptop.

Welcome to the latest edition of the Microsoft Advertising product roundup! February quickly came and went, and now we’re looking forward to the warmer days and later sunsets coming soon. But the brief month was still chock-full of great announcements: New features for our Smart Pages website builder, Cruise Ads for travel advertisers, and other new unique capabilities like dynamic descriptions for Dynamic Search Ads (DSA).

That’s not all, though, because we also just expanded Microsoft Advertising in a major way! Let’s go through some of the key highlights as part of this expansion.

This month’s top story: Microsoft Advertising launches in 29 new countries and more expansions.

Hopefully, you saw our February 14 announcement about this exciting new launch, which goes into detail about the new markets, languages, and product availability. As you see, all the key ad formats and features are supported in each new market, but we have a few new expansions to share along with this post:

  1. Smart Shopping campaigns and Target ROAS for Shopping Campaigns becoming available in the 29 new markets as well as Latin America (LATAM) 7 new markets. We announced the release of Shopping Campaigns in LATAM last month, but now these additional shopping capabilities will become available shortly! Your shopping campaigns will be able to be extended to the Microsoft Audience Network as well.
  2. Marketing with Purpose business attributes. You may have heard about these new attributes in recent months, but we’re excited to share that these will now be available in all markets, including 29 new ones. For more information on all the business attributes and how to implement them, see the help page under Dynamic partner data enhancements.

Snapshot of how Marketing with Purpose Attributes appear on search results pages.

Multi-asset Audience Ads now piloting for advertisers

For those running Audience Ads, step up your ad creative with Multi-asset Audiences Ads now in pilot! Create up to 16 images, up to 15 short headlines, up to five long headlines, and up to five descriptions, and Microsoft Advertising will automatically serve the best performing combinations to reach the right audience at the right time. To opt in to this pilot, please reach out to Support or contact your Microsoft Advertising account representative.

Google Import improvements: Image extensions and Shopping Campaigns

In a similar vein, if you’re looking to share more creative via image extensions, you can now import your image extensions into search and audience campaigns through Google Import! These campaigns will automatically come over to the associated campaign, and you can find these images in your image library to use across other campaigns as well.

Additionally, for those using shopping campaigns or using Microsoft Advertising Editor, we made our import experience a whole lot smarter, allowing you to get set up in just a few clicks! Our new experience allows you to import products from Google Merchant Center to Microsoft Merchant Center, streamlining the process of setting up an import and successfully running Microsoft Shopping Campaigns. Optionally, we can create a draft store which you can complete from Merchant Center at your earliest convenience. For more information on all things Google Import see Import shopping campaigns from Google Ads (microsoft.com).

Automated bidding seasonality adjustments rolling out globally this month

Shifting gears into a few other updates around Microsoft Advertising’s intelligent tools, seasonality adjustments for automated bidding will begin rolling out later this month! Inform your automated bidding algorithms with more signals that specify when you expect performance changes, like when conversion rate (CVR) variance will occur during a seasonal event, promotion, or other variation for your business. This helps address anticipated short-term fluctuations without significant long-term impact on your algorithms’ learning, as well as help maximize performance around critical times.

For example, seasonality adjustments can be useful for:

  • Preparing for peak travel times during holidays, capturing increased demand for booking flights in the weeks leading up, and helping re-adjust the days after the holiday travel peak.
  • Getting set up for success in the days leading up to, during, and right after cyber week (Black Friday, Cyber Monday).

To create a seasonality adjustment for your Target ROAS or Target CPA campaigns, from the top menu, select Tools > Seasonality adjustment. This is supported for Search Campaigns (including those extended to the Microsoft Audience Network), as well as Shopping and Dynamic Search Ads campaigns.

Snapshot of the “Seasonality adjustment” feature when in the platform.

You can create multiple adjustments targeting various campaigns or various time periods. If multiple adjustments target the same campaign, all adjustments will be applied. Lastly, keep in mind that seasonality adjustments should only be used for campaigns with stable performance with automated bidding and have already completed their learning period.

Time zone alignment updates

To prevent potential reporting discrepancies, we’ve made some updates to how time zones are set in Microsoft Advertising: Campaign time zones will now be derived from account time zones. Previously, advertisers could set them separately or differently for campaigns and accounts, which caused potential discrepancies due to differences in time zones. Now, they are always aligned across campaigns!

Reminder on Clarity insights for Universal Event Tracking

Since November, we’ve been migrating all advertisers’ existing Universal Event Tracking (UET) tags to include Clarity insights, which will be completed this month. This migration does not include any of the advertisers who are in the Government, Finance, or Health & Wellness verticals, nor anyone who’s opted out of the migration in advance.

Everything related to Clarity and UET is GDPR and CCPA compliant, but if you choose not to use Clarity, it’s a simple opt-out in the UET settings of Microsoft Advertising online. Do not remove your UET tag from your website, as that could greatly impact your performance, access to different features, and readiness for a cookieless world.

For more information, see UET and Clarity integration (microsoft.com) and Clarity.

Deadline for multi-factor authentication enforcement for API developers extended to June

We’re soon going to be requiring multi-factor authentication for all users who sign in through a third-party application that uses the Bing Ads API, Content API, and Hotel APIs. We’ve just extended this deadline from March to June 1, 2022. Before that date, you must update your application to get user consent using the new msads.manage scope. All application developers must take action to use the new scope.

Winter edition of Microsoft Advertising vs. Google Ads feature comparison now available

Last but certainly not least, we want to make sure you all saw our latest edition of the Microsoft Advertising vs. Google Ads feature comparison document. This is your go-to reference for understanding the nuances between our capabilities and Google Ads’, updated semiannually. Reach out and let us know if you have any questions or comments!

: Snapshot of the Microsoft Advertising and Google Ads feature comparison page.

That does it for now—we do have a number of other exciting announcements coming later this week and month (including a new ad creator), so be sure to stay tuned to the Microsoft Advertising blog throughout March for all that and more! Otherwise, we’ll see you here on April 5 with a recap and another update of what’s to come. Take care everyone!

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