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Microsoft Advertising Multi-linking lets multiple agencies link to one single account. This is helpful for agency transitions, or for an agency or advertiser to set up a single customer shell that has access to all the accounts they manage.

Microsoft Advertising Multi-user Access lets your clients use one username to access multiple customer shells. This is useful for agencies who have logins directly under the client customer shell to manage billing for their clients, or for agencies who need to set up new customer shells for their clients.

After reading this Study guide on Multi-linking and Multi-user Access, you will understand how to:

  • Manage one email address and password for all accounts.
  • Switch between one customer shell to another all from one email address and password.
  • Add customers using your existing email address and password.
  • View information about multiple customers & manage your defaults.
  • Take over billing and payment responsibilities & grant and remove account access.

Multi-linking basics

An account link is a powerful thing. When you link to another customer's account, you gain access and control over that Microsoft Advertising account. Conversely, if you give someone access to your account, that person—known as a managing customer—has full control to manage your account and your advertising. This includes the ability to take over billing.

As an account owner, you always have control on who has access to your account. You can grant access for up to five managing customers on your account. You can also remove their access at any time.

You can opt to take over billing when you link to an account. When you do so, you assume responsibility for all advertising charges, including any charges that are pending when the link is established. Therefore, it's best to have an agreement in place with the current bill-to customer (which may be the account owner or another third party) before proceeding with this optional step.

Taking over billing

If you take over billing, you'll need to have a valid payment method on hand. If you plan to prepay the account or use monthly invoice billing, be aware that Microsoft Advertising might be required to deduct tax from the prepay account. Also, for a monthly invoice account, you'll need to create an insertion order to serve ads, or else the account will be paused.

Before you link to another account, you'll need to work with the account owner to have a few things ready, such as the account number of the account you'd like to link to, the agreed-upon start date and decision for who is responsible for billing.

Link an account

To link an account, first click the gear icon gear icon, and then click Accounts & Billing. Click the Requests tab. Click Link to account.

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Under Linking details, enter the Account number. The account number is an 8-digit mix of numbers and letters. Enter the Start date, which is the date you want to start managing the account.

Add an optional Note, which you can use as a helpful note to the account owner. Click Send request if you don't wish to take over billing, or select I will take over billing for Who pays.

Select How you pay (prepay, postpay threshold, or monthly invoice) and What you pay with (your payment method). For monthly invoice accounts, we encourage you to create an insertion order so that the account will continue to serve ads even as the management responsibilities change hands. Click Send request.

Learn more about how to take over billing, cancel requests, unlink requests, and verify who has access to your accounts.

Multi-user Access basics

When working among several accounts, managing and keeping track of multiple usernames can cause a lot of friction for you and your business. With multi-user access, you can use one email address and password to access all your Microsoft Advertising customers, helping you to manage multiple accounts with ease.

The Multi-user Access bulk workflow is where you can set up multiple consolidated logins at once. The best way to navigate the bulk workflow is from the Tools menu. From there, download and view the suggestions, modifying the file to fit your needs. If you want to add new users, add the customer’s current username and the new username that it will be consolidated to.

Upload the finished file to the workflow and click Validate. View the validation results and make sure everything looks good, highlighting any users so that you can verify that this is actually what you want to do. Complete the merge by clicking Merge User Names.

If you accidentally consolidate the wrong user with a single login, simply go to the manage access page for the consolidated username and click the revert user names link. This will remove the user from the consolidated login and allow the user to use the old username again.

It is important to remember that once a username is merged, it cannot be used to sign in to Microsoft Advertising on the web anymore. This means if you had one login with access to 5 accounts, and another with access to 10 accounts, you will need to switch between both of those customers to see all your accounts.

Multi-User Access sign up

Using Multi-User Access for sign up is useful if your agency/channel partner needs to onboard many new clients who are not in Microsoft Advertising.

First, you will need to create a new Microsoft account to use for Microsoft Advertising sign up. (This can be done by you or the agency. If you do it, make sure you enter the agency’s phone number.)

Next, go to the Users tab for the CID you opted in to the pilot and invite the new MSA you just created. Fill out the invite form and send the invitation.

Click the link in the invitation email to accept the user invitation (needs to be done by whomever created the MSA) then enter the email address you created in the input field, press check availability, then press next.

You will be directed to enter a password.

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Fill out the form with all the details for the user (this does not need to be accurate information). After you save, you’re all set!

Multi-User Access bulk instructions

The bulk workflow allows you to set up multiple consolidated logins at once and provides a list of suggestions for consolidation for a given CID. Suggestions are based on the contact email of a user.

  • For the CID you enter, we look at all the users of that CID
  • For each user, we check their contact email

Microsoft Advertising checks to see if there are any other users that have the same contact email. Those get listed as suggested users to consolidate.

Navigate to the workflow, then download suggestions or a blank template. View the suggestions and upload the finished file to the workflow. Click Validate.

View the validation results and make sure everything looks good – validation will fill in any missing columns and highlight any users that have a different AM assigned so that you can verify that this is actually what you want to do.

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Complete the merge.

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Add new customer shell access to a user

With multi-user access, you can now easily let your customers access multiple customers. This workflow will let you easily add access to a new customer shell for any existing Microsoft Advertising user.

If a client wants to gain access to a new customer, you’ll no longer need to send them an invitation from that customer — just give them access to this customer directly.

To get started, look up the username on UCM and click on their username. Click manage access to get to that user’s access page.

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Click add new access.

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Enter the desired Customer ID.

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Choose the user role and accounts to give access to. Review & confirm. If everything worked, the new user should have access.

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Note: You can also use the manage access page to delete access.

How do I access Microsoft Advertising as an invited user?

Let’s say you have been invited as a new user to Microsoft Advertising. (If you don’t see the “Invitation to Microsoft Advertising” email shortly after the administrator for the account has invited you, check to make sure that it wasn’t delivered to your junk mail folder.) You have 30 days to activate your account after you receive the invitation email.

To sign in to Microsoft Advertising for the first time, find the email that was sent to you from Microsoft Advertising with the subject line "Invitation to Microsoft Advertising." In the email, under To get started, click the link.

Then, choose the option that's best for you:

  • Use an existing email address. You'll enter your email and check availability of that email address.
    • If this is an email that you already use to sign in to Microsoft products, then you’ll sign in and go directly to Microsoft Advertising.
    • If you've never used this email to sign in to a Microsoft product, then you'll go to Microsoft account and sign up for a new account.

Use an existing email address

  • Create a new email address. We'll take you to the Microsoft account sign-up page where you will sign up for a new email address.

Fill out the user information form, entering the email address that you'd like to use to receive critical alerts. (This contact email address can be different from the email address that you use to sign in to Microsoft Advertising). Click Save.


Microsoft Advertising Multi-linking and Multi-user Access lets you help your customers manage multiple accounts quickly and easily.

Key takeaways:

  • You can link all accounts to one customer and set that customer as the bill-to on the account.
  • You can help customers transition from one agency to the next with access to both for any period.
  • The bulk workflow allows you to set up multiple consolidated logins at once.
  • The multi-user access workflow let you add access to a new customer shell for any existing Microsoft Advertising user.
  • Customers with multiple shells can run reports across all of their owned or managed accounts regardless of any other links in place.

Thanks for reading this Study guide on Multi-linking & Multi-user Access. Continue studying or take the Microsoft Advertising Certified Professional exam to become certified.

Please note all features in this Study guide may not be available in your market.