Free internet content frequently makes money via advertisements before or beside the content. Companies have found several different way deliver ads to internet users, from pre-rolls on YouTube, to the infamous pop-up. A common form of advertising in today’s online media is native advertising, which is where content similar to the content of the website is an ad. For example a blog may do a sponsored blog post or ads which resemble search results in a web search. Now Bing Ads is testing the possibility of introducing native ads to MSN.com.
Microsoft’s web portal has a range of content ranging from money, to sports, to weather, and more. If Bing Ads will introduce sponsored stories or a new form of native advertising is unclear, but 2015 looks to be a year where they experiment with defining themselves more independently from Google. Bing has seen good growth in 2014 which drives their confidence to continue improving their platform for their customers. Microsoft will use MSN to plan their ad strategy on other Microsoft products such as Xbox and Windows apps. Hopefully native ads provide a way to keep products and services cheap for consumers without sacrificing more personal data. Microsoft has a wide range of potential ad placements and it will be interesting to see how they further implement native ads.