Recently, Microsoft Advertising made a huge announcement – and it could be a game changer for your digital marketing. The tech giant released Microsoft Video Extensions, which is now available to marketers and advertisers across the globe leveraging Microsoft Advertising. The mobile version of the program is currently only available in the United States (according to Microsoft, this is only temporary).
Microsoft’s new tool gives advertisers the flexibility to add video to other useful ad extensions, too. This new integrated ad solution option allows videos submitted for Video Extensions to be part of the Video Library. This means users can leverage them for Microsoft Audience Network Video Ad resources.
Why This Change Matters
As anyone involved in advertising already knows, dynamic, visual ads are the prime way to grab user attention. Advertisers looking for new ways to stand out and engage users make their ads even more engaging with their target audience. This makes integrated ad solutions more important than ever before.
What Are Video Ad Extensions, and How Do They Work?
Video ad extensions are a type of integrated ad solution that integrates playable videos into advertisements. These video extensions will then be displayed right beside your ad, in the form of a thumbnail. The user can then play this video, which will expand as soon as they click it, making viewing simple.
It’s possible for video extensions to be employed alongside other common extensions; sitelinks are just one prominent example. Using video extensions, it’s even possible for advertisers to incorporate a link into the video overlay. With this handy method, users will be taken straight to the advertiser’s landing page.
Costs for this new tool are reasonable and already likely a part of your advertising budget. Each video view is charged the same way as a single click to a cost-per-click ad. If a user clicks on the link more than once during that action, then the advertiser won’t be charged for more than one click; only the user’s first click is going to be charged.
Setting Up Microsoft Video Extensions: A Step-By-Step Guide
Setting up Microsoft Video Extensions is fairly straightforward, as long as you are using Microsoft Advertising. Here’s a step-by-step guide to get you started using video ad extensions.
- Utilize the Microsoft Ads UI
As it stands, users will need to use the Microsoft Ads UI to begin integrating video extensions into their advertisements. To begin creating these video embellished ads, go to the left side navigation of the Microsoft Ads UI. There, you’ll see a section for ads and extensions. Open the section, before selecting “extensions,” via the top sub-navigation.
- Select Video Extensions (and the Add Them)
Once you’re in the “extensions” section of the Microsoft Ads UI, you’ll be given access to the video extensions option. You’ll be able to find “video extensions” using the provided drop down. Then, look for the “add extension” button and click it.
- Create Video Extensions
If you don’t currently have any other video extensions created on your account, clicking the “add extension” button will trigger two large white boxes to appear. Later, you’ll be able to use these boxes to easily navigate through your current video extensions. However, as this is your first time, no extension options will currently be available to you. The good news is that it’s easy to change.
Beneath these boxes, you’ll find an “add new video extension” link. Just click this link.
- Add Your Video to the Microsoft Ads UI
Now, it’s time for you to upload your video into the Microsoft Ads UI. You have a couple of options for doing this. First, you can upload the video directly to the UI. Or, alternatively, you might decide to provide a link to the video. Either option works just as well.
Once you’ve uploaded your video, you’ll be asked to fill out a series of information about your new upload. Here’s a quick rundown on the information you’ll need to have on hand at this stage:
- The name of your video. How you name your video will be kept private. This process is intended to help with organization purposes primarily.
- A thumbnail image for your video. A thumbnail will be the still image that users see prior to clicking on your video and watching it.
- Any display text. This is the text that will appear beneath your video. Craft it carefully; bots crawl for this kind of text to use in search results.
- Some alt text. In case the video is unable to load properly, this text allows users to still get a sense of what it contains and whether they want to stick around. And, similarly, it’s smart to consider search engine rankings whenever creating text.
- Action text. These words are intended for the video’s CTA button; this button will appear beneath the video each time it plays.
- A final URL. This link is also for the CTA button. You’ll have the option to utilize different links for desktop and mobile, which is likely a smart idea. User experience on a mobile versus desktop are miles different.
And those are the basics! With this list, you can add a video extension to the Microsoft Ads UI, ready to be integrated into your advertisements.
Prefer Images to Videos? Try Microsoft Image Extensions
If you’d rather incorporate images into your ads, rather than videos, don’t worry; you still have options. Images work better with certain ad campaigns. In addition to video extensions, Microsoft also offers various image extension options, including single image, multi-image, and audience ad extensions. Each offers its own advertising benefit.
Multi-image extensions, for instance, lets users view a series of images all in one convenient advertisement. On desktop browsers, this will appear in the form of an image carousel. On mobile, these images will be presented one at a time, allowing users to swipe through the series. You can display a maximum of four additional images.
This is another way to create more engaging advertisements, all while packing some dynamic visual media into your ad campaigns.
Image Extensions are Also Available Through Google Ads
If your advertising aligns more Google Ads than Microsoft Advertising, you don’t have to wait to jump in. Google Ads also offers an easy-to-use ad extension program. With the Google Ads image extension, you’ll be able to increase traffic to your side, attracting users through rich, complementary visual imagery. But they aren’t exclusive. Advertisers can import Google Ads to Microsoft Advertising, expanding their reach to the nearly 50 million Microsoft Search Network searchers in the United States that Google hasn’t reached.
Although the Google Ads image extension feature was in beta until May 2021, it is now fully available to all users of the platform. You’ll be able to add these images with your Google Ads campaign, making bulk uploads simpler than ever.
Video ad extensions are a fantastic addition to anyone’s advertising repertoire. Embedding playable videos into your ads will not only help your campaign stick out to users, but it will also allow them to effortlessly engage with your business. The release of Microsoft Video Extensions is still new, and we’re excited to see where the platform takes this feature in the future.
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Have a question about your Microsoft Video Extensions or Google Ads? Let us help. Spend less time managing your ads and more time running your business with help from Vizion.
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