By Chad Rhodes
Nov 23, 2011
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If you do any Pay-Per-Click advertising with MSN I am sure that you have been anxiously awaiting the addition of an exact match negative keyword feature for adCenter. Well, it appears that the wait is finally over with the most recent update, Version 8 R2.
This update is a welcome change from previous versions of adCenter, which only allowed for the use of phrase match negative keywords. The addition of this new feature gives users much better control over what search queries their ads do and do not appear for. Sculpting your campaigns by adding exact match negative keywords has potential to increase your Click-Through-Rates and save you money by blocking irrelevant search queries and clicks that you could not prevent with phrase match negatives alone.
The MSN exact match negative feature works the same way that it does in Google AdWords. This means adding exact match negative keywords to a campaign or ad group is simple (unlike some other processes in adCenter). First, enclose the word(s) or phrase(s) you would like to prevent your ads from showing on in square brackets, [like these]. Then simply add them to the negative keyword list in a campaign or ad group. It is just that easy!
For example, if your positive match keyword is “high definition televisions” and you would like to prevent MSN from broad-matching to a more generic word, like “televisions”, add the word [televisions] to your negative keyword list. Before this update, adding “televisions” to your negative keyword list would have stopped your ad from showing on the desired search for “high definition televisions”.
In addition to the match type update, adCenter also made a few other changes to the way negative keywords work on MSN. You are no longer able to add negatives at the keyword level. While they may still appear in your interface, they will not be functional. AdCenter has also added a helpful “Negative Keyword Conflict Report” to the UI interface. This report can help you identify and quickly correct any conflicts between your positive and negative keywords.
To read more about these updates, and other changes with the most recent version of adCenter, check out the Campaign Management API Release Notes from Microsoft.