Archive for the 'Microsoft Advertising' Category

Halloween is the perfect time to reach sweets lovers. With dreams of peanut butter cups and power gamers, Reese’s turned to Microsoft Advertising to develop a campaign that would raise brand awareness of its candy and reach active gamers through a Halloween costume contest that Xbox LIVE gamers were already familiar with from past years. 

By taking advantage of the power of the Branded Entertainment Destination, Reese’s and Microsoft Advertising created a Halloween-themed destination that featured a costume contest for gamers and daily prizes were awarded from points to candy.

5584.reeses 5F00 thumb 5F00 553EB4CA Case Study: Reese’s Scores Sweet Success with Xbox LIVE

The “Have a Perfect Halloween” campaign ran for four weeks and quickly produced impressive results. The BDE attracted nearly half of the people who saw it and delivered more than one million clicks. It generated an overall click-through rate of 5.79 percent, outperformed the average Xbox LIVE campaign, and click-through rates for individual elements climbed as high as 9.27 percent.

For the entire sweet story, please download the PDF and begin planning your own perfect campaign today!

@shelbyhealyMicrosoft Advertising

 Case Study: Reese’s Scores Sweet Success with Xbox LIVE

16 skilled marksmen. A $100,000 prize. One winner.

0284.topshot2 5F00 thumb 5F00 33F3B7D9 Case Study: Microsoft Advertising Right on Target for History Channel

When the History Channel wanted to attract viewers to be a part all of the excitement with season two of their marksmanship competition series “Top Shot,” they aimed for something new, fresh and smart. By steering away from traditional television advertising, the History Channel strategically connected with a digital audience of loyal viewers and first time fans.

To hit the mark, Microsoft Advertising partnered with Nielsen in a collaboration called the Television Online Effect. This helped the History Channel connect online and offline behaviors to measure how its television and online advertising work together. Armed with this data, Microsoft Advertising was able to create a custom segment to reach an audience the History Channel would not have reached with traditional television spots alone.

The campaign was a success. Compared to television campaigns alone, the campaign delivered:

3733.topshot3 5F00 thumb 5F00 13004532 Case Study: Microsoft Advertising Right on Target for History Channel

To learn more about the methodology and how you can harness the power of data for your next campaign, visit Microsoft Advertising and download the case study PDF.

Here’s to campaigns that always hit the bullseye!

@shelbyhealyMicrosoft Advertising

 Case Study: Microsoft Advertising Right on Target for History Channel

In order to mirror its high-impact, action-packed script, Paramount needed a blockbuster way to promote “Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol.” Looking for a way to improve likability and brand attribute associations, brand awareness and increased consideration, it was apparent an Xbox LIVE tie-in would be just the right fit.


1830.missionimpossible 5F00 thumb 5F00 0E766620 Case Study– Xbox LIVE Makes Paramount’s Latest Mission Possible

By driving gamers to a Branded Destination Experience that offered a plethora of interactive contests, a movie trailer and custom downloads, the campaign was able to connect with the target in a unique and personal way. Also, in a first of its kind in-game integration, “Mission:Impossible – Ghost Protocol” partnered with Xbox LIVE for a sponsored in-game challenge in Gears of War 3.

Want to know how the mission ended? Visit Microsoft Advertising’s library of case studies here and be sure to download the Mission:Impossible case study here.

@shelbyhealy Microsoft Advertising

 Case Study– Xbox LIVE Makes Paramount’s Latest Mission Possible

My name is Heather Rutkowski and I believe that Behavioral Targeting should be a key ingredient in the marketing plan of every DR focused advertiser. If you think I’m crazy, I would encourage you to read this blog post.

At Microsoft Advertising, we have one of the best Behavioral Targeting platforms available. We see it as a comprehensive solution for marketers, whether they are looking to reach users at the top or bottom of the purchase funnel. While we believe that it is one of the strongest branding tools for advertisers, for the purposes of this blog, I will be focusing on how BT can drive direct response and consumer action.

The secret behind our market-leading BT solutions is our diverse audience powered and authenticated by the Windows Live ID not to mention data from Bing searches. Those millions of people also happen to buy a lot of expensive goods. In fact, Bing users have the highest buying power index (BPI), as compared to Yahoo, AOL and Google. (Source: comScore, December 2011.)Even better, we expect this audience to grow in the future.

5518.Artdeco 2D00 image 5F00 thumb 5F00 1BF3A594 Making Behavioral Targeting Fashionable for Direct Response Conscious AdvertisersYou may be thinking: “does BT really perform as well as Remessaging?” Or, “wouldn’t a CPA campaign be the most low risk option?” And my favorite quote from “DR” marketers- “I only want to run something that is going to perform and hit my ROI. I would prefer to stick with Remessaging and a standard CPA campaign.”So in other words, you are totally ok with losing a majority of your highly qualified audience to your competition?

Let’s take a closer look….

There is no denying that Remessaging does a great job of converting “shoppers” into “buyers.” But what about all of those other qualified consumers that might not even be aware of an advertiser’s product or service and are shopping elsewhere? I like to think of Remessaging as the fancy mannequin in a department store. Having browsed the latest fashion magazines and seen the looks that are on trend and would suit my personal style, on entering the store, this fancy plastic lady reminds me that the “Art Deco” look that I loved in Vogue is totally IN right now. The mannequin is the department store’s Remessaging ad to me, driving me to purchase the latest trend. But what about every other woman in my demographic that is shopping at the department store across the street – or on the other side of the country and doesn’t have the opportunity to see this fancy mannequin because they are not physically INSIDE of this department store?

1563.fashionbillboard 5F00 thumb 5F00 5AE5262F Making Behavioral Targeting Fashionable for Direct Response Conscious AdvertisersWhat if, when all of those women are outside on the street, they saw digital billboards across the country that showed them the trends and clothes that not only map to the designer brands’ objectives, but also align to the type of person that they are, even if they haven’t heard of the designer before? Personalized for better relevance, scaled to reach a broader audience. A far-fetched example, but that is the type of impact BT can have on an interested audience.

Another favorite quote of mine from DR advertisers is: “I don’t want to pay on a CPM for BT, so I will just run a CPA campaign and get the same users that way at no risk.”Let me break this down. It is true that CPA campaigns will always be a low risk for an advertiser- since the advertiser is only paying for conversions; however, the actual impressions that qualify for a CPA campaign are often not the most valuable. Instead, the most qualified cookies are the people that spend the most time and money online and have attractive demographic characteristics for advertisers. These people are most likely already in a number of Remessaging and BT segments. Because of frequency caps, this highly desirable audience will probably never qualify to see many impressions from CPA campaigns. Running a CPA campaign is like getting a free gift with purchase- most people are not ever going to say no to this free gift- but the quality of the gift is often questionable.

Behavioral Targeting is a great way to connect with shoppers that have never even heard of an advertiser’s brand. Microsoft’s BT solution is quickly setting itself apart from the competition, especially as our data footprint grows. Even the most DR focused advertiser should have an overwhelming reason to test BT on the Microsoft Network. If DR metrics are still getting in the way of an advertiser testing BT, an advertiser is essentially giving away customers to the competition.

Heather Rutkowski – Microsoft Advertising

 Making Behavioral Targeting Fashionable for Direct Response Conscious Advertisers



 There has been many discussions on the XAML version of the MSA Ads SDK. The top questions are around z-index and focus issues.

 The problem
Let’s start with the easy one. A bug exists today where the ad control won’t relinquish UI focus in Windows build 8400.

The solution
The good news is that this is a platform issues that has been resolved in later builds.

The problem
The SDK content lags behind the rest of the app when I scroll/pan my app fast.

The solution
See last parapgraph.

The problem
The more challenging issues is around z-index.  As some of you may have discovered, the ads controls is always on top. This is not an ominous feature to ensure our ads are always shown, but rather an issue with the WebView control that we use in the SDK. See excerpt from the Dev portal.

 WebView has the characteristic that other UI regions such as controls cannot be rendered on top of the WebView. This is because of how window regions are handled internally, particularly how input events are processed and how the screen draws. If you want to render HTML content and also place other UI elements on top of that HTML content, you should use WebViewBrush as the render area.

 The challenge is that the WebViewBrush does not capture events.

 The solution
Unfortunately there is no eloquent solution, but just a work around (please don’t flame me). Here goes….

When you are rendering your content over the ads SDK, set the visibility of the ad control to collapsed and when the content is remove to visible. That does not play well with layout managers like stack panels so what I have tried was to create a dummy rectangle that is the same size than the ad control. This rectangle is default collapsed. When you need to hide the ad control, you show the placeholder and vice-versa.

Like so

<StackPanel HorizontalAlignment=”Left” Height=”730″ Margin=”10,28,0,0″ VerticalAlignment=”Top” Width=”300″>

            <UI:AdControl x:Name=”myAdcontrol” ApplicationId=”test_client” AdUnitId=”Image_300x250″ HorizontalAlignment=”Left” Height=”250″ VerticalAlignment=”Top” Width=”300″/>

            <Rectangle x:Name=”myDummy” HorizontalAlignment=”Left” Height=”250″ Width=”300″ Visibility=”Collapsed”/>

            <Image x:Name=”Content” HorizontalAlignment=”Left” Height=”250″ Width=”300″ Source=”Assets/SmallLogo.png”/>


 And with code behind

 if (myAdcontrol.Visibility == Windows.UI.Xaml.Visibility.Visible)


      myAdcontrol.Visibility = Windows.UI.Xaml.Visibility.Collapsed;

      myDummy.Visibility = Windows.UI.Xaml.Visibility.Visible;




     myAdcontrol.Visibility = Windows.UI.Xaml.Visibility.Visible;

     myDummy.Visibility = Windows.UI.Xaml.Visibility.Collapsed;


 This seems to work in basic layouts and I am sure will be more complicated in more complex layouts. One of the options we are exploring is to handle this internally and expose a method on the ads control e.g. Suspend() and Resume()  that internally attempts to retain the real estate by using a dummy container or by temporary converting to a webviewbrush. We will unfortunately not get away from requiring the developer to signal when they want to render content over the ads and/or suspend animation because of the scrolling lag etc.

 Happy coding!

-          Ian


 Challenges with the XAML version of the Ads SDK