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Microsoft Audience Network Planner: Just The Facts

September 8, 2020 Sarah Cavill

Shutterstock_1402377221 May 19, 2019, Brazil. In this photo illustration the Microsoft Corporation logo is displayed on a smartphone.

Advertisers who use Microsoft Audience Network now have the opportunity to “research the right targeting, budgets and bids to maximize results” without running a test campaign, with Microsoft’s Audience Network Planner.

What Is The Microsoft Audience Network Planner?

According to Microsoft, once an advertiser has selected their target audience the Microsoft Audience Network Planner allows them to “research the size and makeup of individual audience segments – and combinations of audience segments – before [advertisers] create an audience campaign.”

How Does The Microsoft Audience Network Planner Work?

The first step to using the Microsoft Audience Network Planner is choosing an audience. Advertisers can pick audience segments inclusive of location, age, gender and list inclusion (ex. remarketing lists, in-market audiences, dynamic remarketing lists). Additionally, audience segments can also include company, industry and job function based on LinkedIn profiles. 

Once an audience has been identified, the planner will show:

  • Estimated monthly audience size
  • Estimated monthly impressions 
  • Defined audiences broken by demographics (age and gender), location, interest (in-market audience) and device

The estimated performance pane in the Microsoft Audience Network Planner (see graphic below) will give a more granular look at performance numbers, with Microsoft explaining that advertisers have access to “estimates for audience size, impressions, clicks, CTR (click-through rate), avg. CPC (cost per click), and spend.” 

These figures represent the performance advertisers could get if they run the planned campaign based on the defined audience. The estimated performance pane also includes Microsoft’s suggested bid. Advertisers can then experiment with different budgets and bids and see what impact they have on campaign performance. 

If an advertiser decides to move forward with a campaign, they click “apply to my account” and will then be prompted through various steps to set up the campaign.

Why Is The Microsoft Audience Network Planner Important For Digital Marketers?

It’s important for advertisers to find the right audiences, and relying on test campaigns can be costly and hit and miss. The Microsoft Audience Network Planner allows advertisers to use the targeting options in Microsoft’s native ad platform and have a better idea of results and outcomes, which can save time and money. Targeting is essential to digital marketing campaigns, and finding the most engaged and ready to act audience can get help campaigns get off on the right foot.

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About the Author

Sarah Cavill

With more than 20 years of writing, editing and reporting experience, Sarah Cavill brings to Digital Media Solutions (DMS) a fine-tuned and diverse set of skills. Her work has been featured in notable publications including The Daily Muse, CBS Local, Techlicious and Glamour magazine. Sarah has a passion for current events and the deep-dive research that goes into the content development and brand identity of DMS Insights. In her role as Senior Marketing Communications Writer, Sarah contributes to the pitching, researching and writing of multiple stories published each week surrounding digital and performance marketing innovations in pop culture, news, social media, branding and advertising.

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