Bethany Wash

Storyteller. Digital marketer. Blogger. Social media enthusiast. Off the clock, an avid reader, cat mum, flautist and cocktail lover flitting between Bristol and Cornwall.

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To cut to the chase, I recently returned from an epic few days in Disneyland Paris. I’m still glowing and buzzing and speaking with a rather croaky voice. (I scream ALOT on rides). My feet ache, my bank balance is scarily low, but I’ve come away with spectacular memories! Thank you, thank you, thank you to Harley who incredibly booked the trip as my Christmas present. And what a gift it was.

I’d been counting down to the big day (AKA flying from good ole Bristol Airport) since December 25th – when Harley presented some gift-wrapped Minnie Mouse ears to me, followed by the extraordinary Disney reveal. As the days drew closer, we saw the weather was forecast to snow slightly on one of the days we’d be in Paris… little did we know we’d soon experience a magical, winter wonderlandy time!

Every holiday for me and Harley begins in the Brunel Bar at Bristol Airport. Yes, it’s overpriced, but there’s nothing quite like the feeling of taking your first sip of a pint – or glass of wine if I’m feeling cheeky! – while glancing over to the departures screen. For this journey, I of course was wearing my Minnie Mouse ears.

We landed in Charles de Gaulle Airport and ubered straight to our Disney hotel – the amazing Cars themed Santa Fey resort. It was so cute! And have you experienced an Uber ride in Paris? They give you sweets! And a bottle of water! And the choice to play your own music through the car’s speakers. I’m so easily amused. We pulled in to the Santa Fey Hotel and I just knew I was up for a few days of pure heaven, and most likely, a pain au chocolat or 5.

I had the BEST time on my Disneyland Paris holiday with Harley, and I’d love to share some of the best bits with you…!

The castle

As we were staying in a Disney hotel, we had access to the park before the general public were allowed in. We took one of the free shuttles from the hotel straight to the entrance of both parks (Disneyland Park and Walt Disney Studios Park). We waltzed in to the former (it was mega quiet) and before I knew it, I was ticking off one of my bucket list items for the trip. THE CASTLE. I cried a fair bit. It’s just emotional to be in the vicinity of something so symbolic of your childhood… and of something you just adore. The castle was beautiful. We gazed upon it what felt like minutes after sunrise – it was still quite dark, and very peaceful. We would later see this transform into a snow-covered castle! Inside the castle you can see Sleeping Beauty’s story. My gorgeous cat at home is called Princess Aurora, so you can imagine how thrilled I was to be in her castle!

I should add too – the castle also brought to us ‘The Spectacularly Sparkly Disney Illuminations Show’ in the evening, at 6.30pm. After exploring the castle during the day (resisting to buy everything in sight in the various Disney shops inside) I again got a tad emotional at the illuminations show and fireworks that come along with it. It’s just EPIC.  A little bit of Frozen, a touch of Star Wars, a hint of Pirates of the Caribbean, a good portion of The Little Mermaid. It was GLORIOUS.

The non-existent queues

Visiting Disneyland Paris in January is just genius. We’d excitedly downloaded the Disney app to check waiting times on rides, but actually didn’t need to check at all! The queues were non-existent, even for the bigger rides we’d be warned about being very popular, like Hyperspace Mountain. And as the snow started to fall an hour or so into our first day, we were extremely thankful that we didn’t need to wait in line for long, for the…

Rides galore!

We spent our first day in the Disneyland Park, and pretty much conquered all the rides that were open. What an exhausting and unforgettable day! Luckily, the snow didn’t seem to effect any rides – just a couple of outdoor experiences, which we then enjoyed on our last day, when most of the snow had melted.

Disneyland Park rides

After breakfast in La Cantina (a very French brekkie of pain au chocolat, hot chocolate, OJ and a bread roll and jam start to the day) we chose our first adventure. The nearby Orbitron ride. There was no queue on the sweet, very child-friendly looking rocket-spinner ride, and so we hopped inside a rocket together. Turns out, you can’t really get two full grown adults in (wearing many winter layers) without it being a bit (a lot) of a squeeze. With help from a ride assistant, we managed to get the seatbelt to fit around us, and off we went. Turns out, we were so distracted by the hilarity of our discomfort and the rapidly falling snow, we didn’t even realise there was a lever to make our rocket glide up and down. Our first ride was a bit of a fail, but hilarious nonetheless.

My favourite attraction by far was the Pirates of the Caribbean ride. We rode it twice and were lucky enough to get the front seat on the front carriage the second time round! Hyperspace Mountain probably comes at second place; which was perfectly scary but enjoyable, and also a fab Star Wars experience. Thunder Mountain and Indiana Jones et le Temple du Périlas were both slightly horrific, with the fast-falling snow making the rides feel authentically life-threatening. The only ride which was terrifying enough to stop me EVER going on it again was The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror. It was – let’s just say – tear-jerking for me. It was traumatic. Never again.

Me and Harley were passionate about taking on every single ride, and so also enjoyed the less heart-pounding teacups, carousal and legendary Dumbo the Flying Elephant. Indoors, Harley somehow cheated and beat me with his shooting skills on the Buzz Lightyear Laser Blast.

Walt Disney Studios Park rides

On our second day of our Disneyland Paris holiday, we cheerfully bounded in to the second park! Again, our first ride of the day had a slight issue. We boarded the Magic Carpet Ride together and were soon flying in to the sky, waving to the genie and have a good giggle. As the ride ended, there must have been a technical issue of some sort, as were left in the air for quite a few minutes, and then after finally landing the carpet, unable to push the safety bar up and get off the ride, alike all the other passengers. All the while, the ride assistants had closed off the entrance and avoided eye contact with us as they spoke manically into their walkie talkies. Still, we were able to leave eventually as the bar thankfully released!

The Walt Disney Studios Park had some excellent rides on offer, including the awesome Ratatouille ride, which featured a 3d experience on wheels, and the endearing Slinky ride inspired by Toy Story. A couple more thrilling rides which had my heart racing again were the RC Racer (a proper screamer) and Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster starring Aerosmith (a full on horror-film screamer). In fact, for the latter, we strolled in to the ride so quickly we hadn’t really digested what ride we were about to enjoy. Seconds before we boarded the rollercoaster, Harley brazily said: “I think this is some sort of nice, musical experience.” Turns out it’s a full-on hardcore, rollercoaster ride with, yes – blasting rock music – but also insane drops and spins at gut-wrenching speeds. Still, I love it. And as mentioned before, this park is home to the formidable Twilight Zone Tower of Terror which basically scared me speechless for 15 minutes or so. My mascara was proven to be entirely non-waterproof.

Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show

One of the very best bits of my Disneyland Paris holiday was the Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show for sure. Donning our complimentary cowboy hats, we were taken into a huge indoor arena; sat in rows on benches, and given a ridiculous amount of beer and food while watching an astounding show of shootouts and stunts on the most beautiful horses. I was mesmerised for hours! And I got to keep my cowboy hat – yee ha!

The parades and shows

At 4.30pm on our first day in Disneyland Paris, I found myself waiting excitedly on Main Street (geekily at the front of the crowds forming); waiting for the Disney Stars on Parade. Moments later, we heard music and cheering from the distance. And then within a few minutes, the parade brought music, colour, dancing and most importantly, our favourite Disney characters to the promenade! I could watch the parade every day. Rapunzel and Eugene were awesome. She waved at us and I’m convinced his wink was aimed at me. Or at least, that’s how I like to remember it.

On our second day, we joined the crowds near the castle ready for the Pirates vs Princesses show. This was arguably even better – all the Princesses sang and danced before a mini parade with a pirates theme circle in the inner square. It was just so lovely!

The food

As Harley had treated us to full board through our Disney Hotel stay, we were able to fill up with breakfast at Cafe Hyperion each day, and then choose from a variety of places for lunch and dinner. My favourite by far was in Captain Jack’s restaurant; where you dine atmospherically close to the Pirates ride itself, and have Captain Jack Sparrow pop by during your meal! The food and cocktails were lush.

We also dined at the Agrabah restaurant, which felt like we’d been transported into the world of Aladdin. The buffet was delicious! After long, exhausting days, dinner offered a much-needed break and during one evening, we chose to stay close to home and eat in our hotel’s restaurant. Santa Fey’s restaurant had a heavily Mexican themed buffet on offer and boy were those nachos good!

Chillin’ with Stormtroopers

While I’m not a humungous Star Wars fanatic, I really did enjoy the park’s Star Wars attractions, including a really clever and fun Star Tours 3D experience. I absolutely LOVED following the Stormtroopers marching through down the streets of Walt Disney Studios Park. It was such a surreal experience! I actually legged it out of Restaurant des Stars when I saw them marching and lost Harley for a few minutes.

Disneyland Paris is currently hosting their ‘Legends of the Force: A Celebration of Star Wars’ season until mid March, and so we were lucky enough to see a special galactic celebration show too. R2-D2 is such a ledge! Oh – and we did meet someone very special too; the powerfully intimidating Darth Vader, who genuinely towered over me and Harley and was very menacing as he accused me of being a traitor…

Meeting Princess Aurora

On our last day, Harley was adament my Disney wish would come true and I would meet a Princess. I know it sounds a bit sad, but it was something I’d been really excited about. The parades had been so amazing, but being able to meet a Princess first-hand was a proper bucket list item. We ventured over to the Princess Pavilion in Disneyland Park super early – before brekkie – and queued up. Yes, we were queuing before and after crowds of families; many of which with very young children donning Disney Princess attire. But I didn’t feel out of place! I was determined to meet a Princess and then overwhelmed when we finally turned a corner at the front of the queue, and were introduced to Princess Aurora, Sleeping Beauty herself. She was insanely beautiful and was so in character! I swear, Harley went a bit red and didn’t speak at all. I, on the other hand, quickly told her like a crazy fan that my cat’s named after her…. a tad awkward. But she was very sweet and I was so thrilled to have a quick chat and then leave before she saw my eyes well up.

Pure magic

I was really sad to leave Disney and all the magical things it’s home to after 3 jam-packed days. I had such a wonderful time and am so grateful to Harley for the unforgettable holiday. I definitely will be going back in a few years… so until then, merci et au revoir!

🙂

Bethany Wash

Storyteller. Digital marketer. Blogger. Social media enthusiast. Off the clock, an avid reader, cat mum, flautist and cocktail lover flitting between Bristol and Cornwall.

Something incredibly exciting happened over the weekend. Me and Harley moved into the next stage of adulting life and became National Trust Members. We now proudly own a National Trust car sticker, and own our very first newsletter and booklet, stamped with the sophisticated leaf logo. Oo-er.

This is what’s to come in this blog. Enticing material or what?

It all happened because of a semi-spontaneous Sunday trip to Tyntesfield; a gorgeous estate just a stone’s throw from Bristol. I woke on Sunday with an urge to explore a castle (this is a frequent side-effect of being a Disney fanatic) and after hitting up Google, we decided that actually, the Tyntesfield estate would more than suffice.

It’s a beautiful Victorian Gothic Revival house surrounded by astounding gardens, located a short drive from our Redfield home, on the B3128. The gardens looked gorgeous and I was 99% sure a trip to this spectacular National Trust site would involve tea and cake. The drive was fairly stress-free (it’s always a gamble with me behind the wheel). You can see Tyntesfield on Google maps here.

On arrival, we quickly realised that we had not quite succeeded into full-on National Trust adulting. With no cash, we were forced to pay for our parking via an obscure app, which charged us nearly double the actual daily rate. But open-minded and optimistic, we strolled into Tyntesfield with a hunger for adventure and cream teas. We were greeted by a plethora of arts and crafts stalls. An adorable market was taking place! The smell of fresh sourdough bread was in the air, and all around us were pretty reflections of colourful mosaics and handmade ornaments and cushions. Even a Bristol Rovers hand-carved clock was on offer. We had stumbled into the sweetest thing, but were keen to get into Tyntesfield itself before the rain threatened to join us.

We resisted the temptation to shop and devour bread and arrived at the ticket desk, where we very quickly realised that, if we were to actually commit to visiting National Trust sites, it would be far better financially to just sign up to become members than pay for individual entry (it’s around £17.50 each to explore the house and gardens).

And so it happened! We became National Trust members, and proudly strolled through the entrance, smug as the market rugs and garden bugs.

Harley outside Tyntesfield House, a ‘newbie National Truster’ and keen bean

So down to the cultural stuff. Tyntesfield is truly a mesmerising place and ideal for outdoorsy folk. An ‘outdoorsy day’ for me and Harley usually translates to ‘beer gardens galore’, but we genuinely loved exploring the grounds here. There are 540 acres of parkland, woodland and gardens on offer at Tyntesfield, so you can certainly stretch your legs and let your mind wander as you admire the scenery. Cheesy stuff, I know, but totally true.

I would say it’s definitely quite a romantic destination too! The rose gardens are charming and there are plenty of places to enjoy a quiet moment or two. Even on a Sunday afternoon, when I assumed the place would be busy and bustling with families, we frequently found ourselves in really peaceful areas of the gardens, pretty much alone. It feels like there’s endless parkland, woodland and gardens here. Our Apple watches – or more specifically fitness apps – were chuffed with us. We walked what felt like miles (I slightly exaggerate). We saw a tennis court and some play areas for children, so I can see it being a great day out for the family (plus dog – in certain dog-friendly areas!)

Who doesn’t love a plant-engulfed archway?

Of course, we wanted to explore inside the house too! The National Trust are currently working on a major conservation project in the house, to replace its fire alarm system. The ‘Fire and Wire’ project sounded like it could potentially be really disruptive – a few rooms were closed off from the public as a result – but we actually really loved it! The majority of rooms open to the public contained fire-themed artefacts, such as a historic fireman’s helmets, and you could learn about how fire prevention has changed since Victorian times, and see the tools they’d use to tackle it. Old-school fire hoses and the like were displayed around the impressive rooms.

Tip: During this project, visitors need a site pass to visit the house, which are available for certain time slots throughout the day. We had a 2pm to 3pm slot and easily strolled in at around 2.40pm. You can pick up your pass from the ticket office.

For some reason, I am really impressed by historic houses with Sprung (servant) bells. They just look so nifty and make me feel like I’m a leading female on an episode of Downton Abbey! My imagination runs wild in situations like this. I can just so see myself meandering from the billiard room to the pantry, demanding red wine and canapes… then sitting down to play an astoundingly impressive (and memorised) piece on the piano…

Anyway, back to the 21st century.

Ring once for tea, and twice for prosecco

We explored the house in around 45 minutes to an hour, but you could certainly stay longer if you really wanted to take in every tiny detail, and especially, admire the paintings. We wandered down through the Tyntesfield greenhouses (chillis growing galore, and lily pads bobbing up and down sweetly) and finally sat down for tea and scones (jam first, of course. We’re not maniacs). Despite being attacked by a jam-lovin’ wasp or two, it was really lovely.

So to summarise, I would really, really recommend a day out at magical Tyntesfield. If it’s sunny, definitely bring your own picnic – there are some gorgeous spots you can nab. If you’re not a member, bring cash for the car park (it was £3 for the day on Sunday). Or consider becoming a member, as I can see how quickly it can pay off.

21st mirror-selfie meets Victorian billiard room

Thanks to Harley for a lush day out and for calmly saving me from the killer wasp. 🙂

Bethany Wash

Storyteller. Digital marketer. Blogger. Social media enthusiast. Off the clock, an avid reader, cat mum, flautist and cocktail lover flitting between Bristol and Cornwall.

Hi all, it’s been ages since I last blogged. Life’s been very busy! But I am very happy, now the Marketing Officer at Jessie May, the incredible children’s hospice at home charity. I am, of course, extremely biased, but I truly advocate you check them out here.

But the reason why I have put pen to paper again (that’s a lie, I am most definitely tapping away on a laptop keyboard with Netflix whirring on in the background) is because I had an amazing weekend and I want to chat (brag) about it.

I had my second Secret Cinema experience, and while it could never have lived up to the ridiculously world-class level of my first (the Moulin Rouge! themed life-changer), it was awesome.

If you haven’t heard of Secret Cinema, get exploring them ASAP. It basically offers the opportunity to become fully immersed in a specific film, in a fantastically quirky, and interactive way. Without giving too much away, you enter the world of your film – you can meet the characters, you can physically follow the plot, you ARE in fact an assigned character, with assigned attire (I strangely relished being a Moulin Rouge! Can-Can Dancer, don’t judge me!). And after all the fun (and drinks!) the film itself is screened and you get to enjoy it surrounded by like-minded fanatics and the joy of NO PHONES.

That’s undoubtedly one of my favourite things about Secret Cinema – it’s no phones allowed once you’re there! With everyone’s mobiles wrapped up, you can actually become absorbed in the breathtaking moments and avoid all distraction of glaring phone screens and irritating beep alerts.

So while I could rave and rave about the Moulin Rouge! Secret Cinema experience (probably the best night of my life thus far), this blog is actually about this weekend’s shenanigans. The film I experienced, with my boyfriend Harley, best friend Maddy and her boyfriend Ryan, was Romeo + Juliet – but more specifically, the 1996 American film version directed, co-produced, and co-written by the legend that is Baz Luhrmann (who also directed, co-produced, and co-wrote Moulin Rouge! I mean, he clearly deserves the legend title, hands down).

If you haven’t seen this film adaptation, it’s a must. I mean, Romeo is Leo Di’Cap – so really, what more is there to say?

Harley, me, Maddy and Ryan - from the Capulet House before our epic Secret Cinema experience

Harley, me, Maddy and Ryan – from the Capulet House before our epic Secret Cinema experience. Check our our tats right!

It’s a splendid choice for Secret Cinema – and while I wish I could elaborate why exactly, I shall resist, to avoid spluttering spoilers.

But it made me realise that Secret Cinema is so wicked, it really should be less secret. I urge film-lovers to get involved and sign up for the next installment. Here’s why:

  1. To repeat – NO PHONES. One of the biggest peeves at the cinema (surely) is random phone screens shining up from someone’s lap mid-film. The world of Secret Cinema bans phone use so you can actually whisk your mind away from your 21st century addictions and get beautifully lost in the moment.

2. This may be more aimed at girls – but you know when you’re on a night out, and you’re queuing for the toilet – the never-ending queue – and you start to chin-wag with a complete stranger? You exchange compliments on each other’s outfits, you gossip and suddenly you’re best friends for the night. (You’ll never see her again, but you’ll share memories!) Well – you can do this so easily at Secret Cinema, minus the bog, and potential toilet drama. Everyone’s so passionate and enthusiastic (you have to be, really, to pay the ticket price) so everyone’s in a great mood, with no phone distractions (I repeat again), and super willing to meet and greet and share Secret Cinema tips. You can join various Facebook groups beforehand, and you’ll meet some awesome people, and may even get offered some second-hand costumes, or at least handy ideas. Secret Cinema creates an adorable community which I love. I’m still part of the very active House Capulet Facebook group now, and I don’t want to leave!

3. You get the glorious excuse to shop for a wacky costume. So as mentioned, for Moulin Rouge! I was able to release my inner Can-Can Dancer. For Romeo + Juliet, I was a Capulet Cat, so donned my cat ears, leather skirt and leopard print to the colour theme of red and black (Montagues were blue).

This was me! This is the insane level of detail the organisers go into. I ADMIRE THIS GENIUS!

It’s basically compulsory to dress up for Secret Cinema and if you’re like me, you’ll relish finding the perfect combo of clothing and accessories. Harley was genuinely thrilled to get his Capulet ‘on and wear a Hawaiian shirt and fake sleeve – and massive fake chest tattoo (which looked surprisingly good, but that could be the cocktails talking).

4. You get to meet your favourite characters. With the Moulin Rouge! experience, I stood – quite stalker-ishly, about two inches away from Christian at one point, when he was mid-song. (Totally imagining he was singing to me, of course.) Before the film screening, I had a full on conversation with some Can Can Dancers – and, to avoid spoilers for Romeo + Juliet, let’s just say once again you can get pretty close to the characters you’ve dreamt of bumping into. O Romeo, Romeo! Wherefore art thou Romeo! Pretty damn close, that’s where he is.

5. You get a great excuse to visit London! I’m a Cornish girl now loving life in Bristol, but I do love London, on an extremely tourist level. I rarely venture up to the city so when Secret Cinema comes around I know an excellent weekend’s on the cards. For our wonderful Romeo + Juliet experience, we stayed at The Stay Club; “premium accommodation for students and young professionals”. It was an equally cute and funny experience for our group, with our room boasting 2 sets of bunk beds and a less-than-average sized wet room. I would genuinely recommend the place though – take a look here.

These are just a few reasons. There are plenty more, which may divulge Secret Cinema’s own secrets, so I shall stop now. But please – let’s share this secret, and let our friends and family, who need an epic experience, to keep an eye out on the Secret Cinema’s next listing. I promise they won’t be disappointed.

Bethany Wash

Storyteller. Digital marketer. Blogger. Social media enthusiast. Off the clock, an avid reader, cat mum, flautist and cocktail lover flitting between Bristol and Cornwall.

Google may be the first search engine you turn to for late night questions (like, what do you call a group of turtles?) and Search Engine Marketing (SEM.) But Bing Ads shouldn’t be dismissed! While I adore Pay per click (PPC) Google AdWords (as seen in my previous blog ‘A Guide to Google AdWords: The Dos and Don’ts’), Bing Ads is another fantastic online advertising tool and must-do within your search marketing strategy.

The SEM underdog must be embraced! The vast majority of the time, marketers find Bing Ads to offer a much lower Cost per Click (CPC) compared to AdWords. When it comes to budgeting, this is surely pretty irresistible.

Here’s my handy guide to this perhaps-lesser-known-beast-of-a-marketing-tool.

What’s Bing Ads anyhow?

Bing Ads provides PPC advertising. It is an online auction – much like Google AdWords. Apparently, Bing Ads “powers one in four United Kingdom searches and delivers 918 million searches every month”! So it’s certainly worth considering. Your Bing Ads can appear on Bing, Yahoo and MSN search results.

How do I get my Bing Ads seen?

Your ad position depends on certain criteria – again, much like AdWords! As you will be bidding in this online auction against others, and there’s only so much space physically on Bing and its affiliates, you need to up your game to rank. Criteria includes not only how your bid compares to others, but also how relevant it is to the searches and how strongly your ad has performed in the past. This is where A/B testing can come in handy.

Bing Ads – Setting up & all that jazz

Setting up Bing Ads isn’t as daunting as it may seem! Go to the homepage, hit create account and follow the massively self-explanatory details, including inputting your contact details and business name. You then have the enticing option of importing data from Google AdWords – so if you have this all set up, you’re going to hit the ground running!

But you can also start afresh and create a new Bing Ads campaign, and input ad groups and keywords from a blank canvas: a marketer’s dream, or nightmare, depending on your workload!

Of course, why you’re looking to enter the exciting Bing Ads auction is extremely important when setting up campaign. You can choose from the following business goals:

Marketer setting up a Bing Ads campaign

Once you’ve honed in your focus goal, the fun begins with setting up your Bing Ads campaign. And much like AdWords, the set up is really transparent. Simply name your campaign, set your budget and location targeting and define who should see your ads. Simples!

Ad groups and keywords

Alike AdWords, here campaigns are made of ad groups, while ad groups consist of sets of ads and keywords. If you need a little inspiration setting up ad groups and keywords, Bing Ads kindly offers help! At this stage of campaign creation, you can get ideas for ad groups and keyword ideas by typing in your website URL or defining your product/service.

Bing Ads then presents suggested keywords, and displays how many times people search on it every month. You’ll also find out the average CPC and, crucially for your budget, how competitive the keyword is. Super helpful! Here’s an example below after a keyword search of women’s dresses:

Marketer getting ad group and keyword suggestions through Bing Ads

Creating Bing Ads-ads

So you’ve created your ad groups. Now it’s time to actually create your Bing Ads-ads! And, as time will tell, set up ad extensions. The real fun begins. Firstly, ensure your ad text has a clear Call To Action (CTA). Here’s what the ad creation page looks like:

Marketer creating a text ad in Bing Ads

The content of your Bing Ads needs to target your audience and be compelling enough for people to actually click through to your website. Of course, that’s the ultimate aim! Your Click Through Rate (CTR) is paramount, and it all begins with your ad copy and how enticing it appears to search engine searchers. This includes using relevant keywords within the ad, being specific with your product/service and including the price of your product/service (if it’s competitive and worthy of mentioning!).

You’ve created your first ad in your ad group and you’re feeling pretty productive. But it doesn’t stop there! Each ad group in Bing Ads can contain 100 wonderful ads. Bing Ads displays these is an even rotation – so why not create a few different ads and monitoring their performances to see which copy works best? A small edit of your ad Titles could make all the difference.

Successful ads:

Are specific and relevant.

Target your audience using their language and lingo.

Are compelling and make people click!

Are truthful and not misleading.

Are good enough to drive traffic to your website!

Ad extensions

Fancy beefing up your Bing Ads? Ad extensions are the bee’s knees. They do just that – extend your add. They add more detail to your ads. They can improve your CTR. They’re worth considering and playing around with. Sitelink Extensions, Callout Extentions, Structured Snippet Extensions, Location Extensions, App Extensions, Call Extensions and Review Extensions are all on offer. Bing Ads explains what they are really simply. Find the best extensions for your business and ads and apply! Like with AdWords, ad extensions are totally free to add too.

Bing Ads Budget and bids

The last step in creating your campaign is finalising your budget for the keywords you’ve chosen. Again, the Bing Ads set up page is wonderfully concise and you can play around with your budget settings smoothly. Here’s what you’re presented with:

Marketer setting up budget and bids for a Bing Ads marketing campaign

It’s important you amend your budget and bids accurately. But the great thing about Bing Ads, is that if you reach your daily limit for a campaign, all the ad groups inside are paused – so you won’t continue to pay.

Reviewing your Bing Ads campaigns

Once your campaign(s) are set up and running (this is assuming you’ve successfully set up a payment method!) Bing Ads displays your progress fantastically. An overview of all your campaigns can be found, including all the ad groups and keywords you’ve set up. The Reports tab is also a super tool. This is where you can set up customised performance reports and check out their CTR and conversion rates for your ads.

The Opportunities tab is also a great tool, aimed to help you improve your campaigns. Bing Ads Opportunities gives you super helpful suggestions on how to rock your campaigns – from the addition of new keywords to increasing your bid for better visibility.

So why use Bing Ads?

 I truly believe it’s worth delving into the exciting world of Bing Ads, whether you’re a beginner at PPC advertising or AdWords veteran! It is a big juicy chunk of the search marketplace and can, if utilised correctly, drive leads and result in more sales in a cost-effective way. For some, it’s far cheaper than using AdWords, and more successful as a result. It’s great on desktop and mobile too – opening up your ads to a whole lotta people across many devices! 

Pretty simple to set up and manage with a fantastic chance of ROI? Bing Ads is a fabulous tool – to either use in place of AdWords, or running at the same time – all depending on your budget! It’s a must-try addition to your digital marketing strategy.

Do you use Bing Ads? Would you recommend the advertising tool? 🙂

Bethany Wash

Storyteller. Digital marketer. Blogger. Social media enthusiast. Off the clock, an avid reader, cat mum, flautist and cocktail lover flitting between Bristol and Cornwall.

Content is king. But when bloggers and marketers such as myself get inspired to create topical copy and publish and promote it as soon as physically possible, the king can be delayed somewhat. We want people to read our compelling words and we know that pages and pages of writing are going to turn people off fast. We need a little imagery to keep hold of what we desire – readers’ full attention. So we turn to graphics, photos, videos, pull quotes, GIFs and jazzy fonts. (See you later Comic Sans!)

Adding images to your blog can be detrimental to a single reader persevering to the end.

If you’re looking to share your copy over social media, then you pretty much have to have imagery of some sort to support and promote it. (For some more social tips, check out my blog: “11 tips for effective Twitter business marketing!”).

I definitely seek to break up my content with imagery – but I’m sort of on an eternal budget after buying a new WordPress theme (it’s pipdig). And while I could scroll through my phone and friends’ pics for relevant shots, high-resolution photos are definitely preferable. And most of my photos are of my cats.

Free photo databases are the answer! Check out my top 5 free photo databases– the wonderful sites I turn to for this very blog in my hours of need. With these guys, your stock photography is sorted! Enjoy some random free images I’ve taken from each site too… 

1- Pixabay

Example of a free stock photo from online database Pixabay

Pixabay‘s saved many a blog post and Tweet for me!

2- Unsplash

Unsplash free photo for marketers

I mean, just look at this cute fox from Unsplash‘s wonderful database. It’s free!

3- Freeimages

Example of a free stock photo from online database FreeImages

Mysterious. And free! Thank you Freeimages!

4- picjumbo

Example of a stock photo from online database picjumboLovin’ the purple theme on this picjumbo visual offering.

5- NegativeSpace

Example of a free stock photo from onoline database NegativeSpaceIf you’re writing about space, this one’s for you. Cheers for the space, NegativeSpace!

If you want beautiful, free images, these are the guys to turn to. Of course, there are many more available! Which websites do you use? 🙂

Bethany Wash

Storyteller. Digital marketer. Blogger. Social media enthusiast. Off the clock, an avid reader, cat mum, flautist and cocktail lover flitting between Bristol and Cornwall.