Prepping for Yahoo! Microsoft Wonder Twins Search Alliance

As we prepare for the Yahoo! Microsoft Search Alliance when these two superheros say, “Wonder Twins Activate: Form of Chinese-Friendly Google,” we here at Direct Online Marketing can’t help but shed a few tears.  We may never have another chance to watch the Search Engine Rap Battle again.

But the real question: are you prepared?  Pick your position out of one of the following 3 scenarios ranked in order of least work to most work to learn what you need to know.

You Only Advertise in Microsoft adCenter

Really?  Well, you’re set.  Move on – nothing to see here.

You Advertise in Both Microsoft and Yahoo!

We’ve heard different strategies, but really the biggest thing for most medium-sized advertisers is just to make sure you have your Microsoft adCenter account as up to date as possible.  Check it against your Yahoo! Search Marketing account to see where there’s disconnect and make sure you’re adding all terms as appropriate.  Then just get ready to make adjustments like crazy when the switch happens as things like cpc’s and ad positions could go haywire.

Note – this advice is primarily for search networks.  If you’re running content match, you’re going to have a lot more work to do.  Check back later for more on this.

You Only Advertise in Yahoo! Search Marketing

Here’s where things get a little bit tricky. We’ve compiled a list of some of the most important things you’ll want to do:

  1. Check those ads.  If you’ve been running 40-character titles on Yahoo!, chop them up.  Ad titles are limited to 25 characters just like Google AdWords.   Likewise, you actually get 71 characters for ads in Yahoo! (and need to use a period), but will only get 70 in Microsoft. That means your last word could be cut off.  And everybody loves to make fun of grammar and spelling mistakes.
  2. Keywords.  Wow will this be fun.  You can actually advertise on virtually any keyword you want now, unlike being stuck with choosing one keyword choice that Yahoo! maps out to many different phrases.  That makes management a little more time consuming, but well worth it.
  3. Bids. he minimum bid in Yahoo! is one penny, but a nickel with MSN.  I had actually I had forgotten about this one until an email from our friends at YSM as the minimum bid is actually higher for many keywords and virtually all the ones you’ll care about.  However, you’re likely going to have more competition on your keywords after the switch, so you’re going to need to up them anyway.
  4. Country Targeting.  You’ll have a few more options here, sort of.  Whereas with Yahoo! you needed to create a separate account for anything outside the US and Canada, Microsoft will also let you do France and the UK (and sort of Singapore) within the same account if you’d like.
  5. Set up an account now with adCenter.  Kind of a big ticket one here.  They’ll have tutorials and will do what they can to make the transition easy, but it won’t be.  Get used to running the accounts now even if you only put a small budget towards it.

As we go along and note some other biggies, we’ll either update this list or do a new post if warranted.  If you want to learn more and don’t mind looking through rose-colored glasses, check out the official YSM-adCenter transition site.

Remember, they are pushing for a transition ahead of the heavy holiday shopping period.  However, according to our reps, there’s the possibility it will get pushed back.  They recognize the importance of this period for many advertisers and aren’t going to push ahead if they’re not confident of a smooth transition.  So if you’re setting up new accounts now, we’d do one in bot

 

Justin Seibert

About The Author

Justin Seibert is the President of Direct Online Marketing. Justin holds a Bachelor of Arts from Vanderbilt University. He contributes a wide range of online business-oriented topics, including the subject of exporting. His contributions can be found on publications such as the Pittsburgh Business Times, Advertising Age, SES Magazine, and La Voz del interior. Justin and his family enjoy learning about new cultures during their travels.

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