Yesterday, Bing rolled out a new campaign in an effort to gain market share for their search engine. Since Microsoft started competing in the search engine market, they've been struggling to get Google users to migrate to their services, even with efforts to differentiate themselves through a new user interface and integrated social features. Watch today's video to see what Bing's new logo could do for Microsoft, learn about the new features they're rolling out along with the logo, and if their efforts can make the impact they want in the search engine market.
Hello and welcome to our video where we’re going to talk about the new changes at Bing. I’m Chad Hill and I have Adam Stetzer with me as well.
Yeah, good afternoon Chad. So Bing is at it again. They are pushing One Microsoft, they’re trying to gain market share, they’re trying to put up a big fight against Google—their number one rival who they seem to trail behind quite a bit. So they’re trying some new stuff and they say they might possibly know what you want to know before you search it, trying to enhance their experience, all sorts of things. A new logo. Chad, what’s the latest on Bing?
Yeah, well I think there’s two separate stories, and they're combined together. But one is a logo, and we know that rolling out a new logo is a tremendous undertaking. It’s often done to try to create a better connection with your customers, connect better with the Microsoft brand, and in this particular case, I think what they’re trying to do is make Bing part of the overall suite of services that Microsoft offers across their channels of Office and different products there, just adding Bing in there. So, I think that’s a big part of the logo.
But I think more interestingly, what we’re seeing is that they’re continuing to surface services right inside the search results. And traditionally, search engines were all about you search, and then you click on something and you go to another website. They’re all about referring people to another website. More and more what Bing is trying to do is, and Google is doing this as well, is trying to keep you in the search engine. So bringing reservation results and hotel rates and product searches back to the search engine rather than referring you out to en eCommerce provider or referring you out to a travel agency. They’re bringing it right into the search engines. So it’s very different, it’s certainly a great way of keeping people on your website, but what’s the impact here, Adam, what’s this trend look like for the average person trying to get their results in the search rankings?
Well, a lot to digest there. First of all, on the logo side, it begs the question, do logos matter. We just saw this huge debate over Yahoo changing, or not really changing their logo from purple to purple, slightly different font. I mean, with your background in marketing, you would probably say logos matter a great deal, I would imagine. Someone I thought was very smart told me you can make a company fly with a bad logo just like I could make a brick fly, but a paper airplane flies much better, so implying it’s sort of an assist. And we know Bing’s been at this for quite a long time.
I also thought it was interesting here is that these beautiful images that Bing has become known for the last few years will remain, and it seems to be a part of their overall user experience. So they certainly are working on that UX, they have been, although it seems like the last few years that really hasn't had an impact. Do you think it has? Has it pulled people from Google and that stark white interface?
No, I mean it’s sort of be heresy to say that I think a lot of logo redoes often fail. I think a lot of times a new CMO comes into a company and they tend to say the logos the problem. And usually it’s an overall messaging issue and just as you're doing messaging and product positioning you throw in a logo. But in my experience, having been through a number of these very large companies is that they take a tremendous amount of time, and I do think that sometimes at the end of the day it doesn't often drastically change someone’s perception of you and your company. I went through a couple logo changes at AOL when I was there, and they definitely take a lot of effort, and again I’m not sure that saved AOL at any point. So I’m not so sure about the logo even though I am a marketer, Adam.
Yeah, well that seems true. But it does sound like Bing has, and you suggested this, bundled the logo change with some substantive user experience changes here. So a couple of points, their results where they’re confidence is extremely high and they believe they know the user’s intent. They’re changing things up. That sounds algorithmic to me. And again it’s probably in an effort to do a better job against Google.
Secondarily, they’ve done some work on the social media sidebar, the snapshots. These are combined, they’re shaded, they’re trying to differentiate that a bit. I think those are fairly substantive, whether you buy into the logo marketing hype or not. And again I think it’s all geared towards what you said, keeping people on their site, but also just gaining market share against Google which they continue to struggle to do. And I think many in the internet marketing world wish they could do better so there was more head to head competition and more even split between those top leaders.