Although I usually am not overly impressed with the marketing measures done by Microsoft, I have to give them credit for a more simple, yet effective promotion they are running for Microsoft adCenter.
As a 2nd birthday present Microsoft adCenter is offering to take all of the existing keywords from your Google Adwords campaign and use them in their own system and also give a $25 credit on clicks.
Microsoft also claims in their advertisement that there is a greater quality of clicks and a higher level of engagement / conversion with the people searching through Microsoft compared to Google.
Our Own Take On The Announcement
At TechWyse, we run campaigns daily on all paid search platforms like Google, Yahoo!, Bing & Facebook. Based on our own experience we actually tend to agree with the claims made by Microsoft. Most of the accounts that we run show a much better cost per conversion than Google campaigns. The one major drawback is that the traffic volume is usually less than 5% of Google. Hence, adCenter while usually a beneficial platform to run, is usually best used as a complement to Google. It should never be used in place of Google Adwords.
I suspect that is the goal of this campaign by Microsoft. The first step is to get people using it. Once this happens they can begin other marketing initiatives to make the platform grow.
Microsoft Doing The Little Things
While Microsoft still is at the point that they are not very relevant in search, they do seem to be doing things right over the last year. If recent market share claims are accurate, it also supports the idea that Microsoft search is improving while Yahoo! is losing its market month by month.
My own feeling is that these small initiatives will continue to add up and improve the overall Microsoft community. They seem to be removing the dead weight (such as the recent announcement where they stopped their analytics platform) and focusing what they should.