Bing Promo, Case study PRO FORMA PLANNING MODEL by J. Walter Thompson New York, UM

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Industry Search Engines
Media Promo & PR, Case study
Market United States
Agency J. Walter Thompson New York
Agency UM
Released March 2009

Credits & Description

Category: Best Research
Advertiser: MICROSOFT
Agency: UM
Date of First Appearance: Mar 6 2009 12:00AM
Entrant Company: UM, New York, USA
Director Research: Chad Davis (Microsoft)
Director Analytics: Lise Brende (Microsoft)
General Manager: Eric Hadley (Microsoft)
Client Business Partner: Jeff Bernstein
Vice President Strategy & Analytics: Anant Mathur
General Manager: Danielle Tiedt (Microsoft)
Senior Marcom Architect: Aaron Lilly (Microsoft)
Senior Director of Marcom Media: Bill Capodanno (Microsoft)
Group Media Director: Sarah Potemkin
Associate Media Director: Steven Feldman
Media placement: TV – 6 Spots - ABC, NBC, CBS, FOX, WB, Adult Swim, AMC, BET, Bravo, CMT, CNBC, COM, DISC, DIY, - 3 June 2009
Media placement: TV – 6 Spots - HGTV, MSNBC, MTV, N@N, Style, TBS, TNT, TLC, TRAV, TV Land, USA, VH1 - 3 June 2009
Media placement: Radio – DJ Live Reads And (2) :30 Spots - AM, PM,WKD 10 Markets: Atl, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, LA, NY, Miami, SF, Seattle, - 15 June 2009
Media placement: Radio – DJ Live Reads Only - AM,PM,WKD 10 Markets: Atl, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, LA, NY, Miami, SF, Seattle,D - 5 July 2009
Media placement: Newspaper – (1)P4C Black Friday/Cyber Monday Unit - New York Times, USA Today - 27 November 2009
Media placement: Magazine – 3 P4CB Units + Advertorials - Vogue, Lucky, Harper’s Bazaar, Esquire, InStyle - March, May, June Issues
Media placement: Cinema – (1) :60 Spot - National NCM Rotation - 6 July 2009
Media placement: OOH – Seattle Only - Interior Transit Cards - 15 June 2009
Media placement: Online – High Impact - MSN, Huffington Post, NY Times, Federated Media, - 3 June 2009
Media placement: Online – CPC - 24/7 Media, Cadreon, InterClick, Traffic Marketplace, Tribal Fusion, ValueClick - 3 June 2009

Results and Effectiveness
Within the first four months, we beat the original 13-month awareness goals by two times and are on track to meet market share goals. Not confident to sit on our laurels, six months in, we re-forecasted year-end goals to represent an even greater increase in awareness and perception – and are on track to beat those. While the metrics have been outstanding, we have also succeeded in “waking the beast.” From a position of dominance, Google ran its first-ever US spot in support of search during the 2010 Super Bowl, largely seen as a defensive move from the Bing threat.

Creative Execution
Our ‘pro forma’ approach modelled media scenarios against our key metrics. Before launch, we developed a media mix using a deep well of campaign results and proprietary research tools. We then created media plans that delivered six-time reach and frequency across channels. After launch, we regularly fed real results back into the model. Awareness and perception data collected from Nielsen IAG data and Microsoft’s awareness and perception tools allowed us to calibrate the model and re-forecast performance. We purchased all media in short increments for maximum flexibility, enabling us to test various media channels and TV day parts. While Prime TV effectively drove key metrics, we bought out Late Night and direct response TV because of their efficiency. Radio DJ endorsements drove awareness and perception more than scripted radio. Based on results, online has evolved from a focus on direct response to a mix of high-impact, video and efficiency media.

Insights, Strategy & the Idea
Search in North America is a four-player game dominated by one: Google. At a time when search engines are a cornerstone in Internet-users’ experience, Microsoft’s search solution ranked third with close-to-no brand awareness and perceived sub-par technology. With search a core strategic pillar in Microsoft’s business, Bing had to provide consumers with a truly compelling reason to switch. The campaign was charged with branding Bing as a “decision engine,” measured by a 20-point gain in awareness, 12-point gain in the belief that “Bing is a decision engine,” and three-points in market share. These high stakes and a substantial media investment demanded a strategy that could be optimised rapidly and effectively to hit these goals. We built an approach called ‘pro forma’ planning. Validated by campaign performance data, our model informed our investment strategy based on projected gains, enabling rapid optimisation across all media types with a cadence typically seen only for digital media.