Sometimes there are small nuances of account set-up and management that need to be discussed. Today, I will focus on a small campaign setting in a small search engine (comparatively speaking to Google), but this tid bit of information can severely affect a campaign’s performance. Setting your geo-targeting within MSN adCenter isn’t difficult, but it can be tricky and here’s why.

When creating a new campaign within MSN adCenter you have to choose where to distribute your ads by language and market. As you can see in the screen below, MSN has 6 markets and the only language option available is English. In this example, I have chosen to target the United Kingdom. The “market” means that I am targeting – and not

Please keep in mind that the settings you choose for each campaign can’t be changed. Your time zone and selected market distribution can’t be altered once the campaign has been created.

Now, this is where it can get a little tricky if you don’t pay attention. Your geo-targeting isn’t set solely at the campaign level, but at the ad group level as well. As you can see in the screen shot above I targeted the United Kingdom for my campaign setting, and below I am choosing the same location for my ad group setting.

msn5.jpgYour settings can cancel each other out, so keep a close eye on this. Geo-targeting at the ad group level is a nice idea but it isn’t extremely helpful because your campaign level setting overrides your ad group setting. For example, I have a campaign targeted toward the UK and I set up 3 ad groups within this campaign: one targeting the UK, one targeting the US and one targeting Mexico. This may seem silly to do, but within your ad group settings you do have the option to do this. All three ad groups in this example will target because the campaign level market setting overrides the ad group setting.

In summary, choose your market and geo-targeting settings carefully in MSN. I know this may seem rudimentary but I thought this was worth pointing out to save you some headaches in the long run. For now, you may want to go back into your MSN adCenter campaigns just to make sure all of your campaigns are set up properly, and going forward keep this in mind!