I'm sure you remember the blind taste test of the '70's and '80's where Pepsi took on its rival Coke to determine which soft drink people prefer. It was a fairly successful ad campaign for Pepsi as many of the blind taste testers tended to pick Pepsi over Coke.
While their methods have been called into question – most recently by Malcolm Gladwell in his book Blink – who (in his own research) found the results of the Pepsi Challenge to be flawed because most people will tend to prefer a “sweeter” tasting drink (Pepsi) when doing a “sip taste”.
Pepsi popularized the “taste test” campaign and there have been many other brands who've tried to employ similar methods in their own marketing efforts.
Today, Bing is trying to employ a similar ploy as they take on the Giant, Google in the battle for search engine supremacy. I'm sure you've already seen the commercials: A witty man with glasses walks around asking folks what their favorite search engine is – and then inviting them to a blind test of sorts to see which search results they prefer:
As Bing claims – most testers preferred Bing, 2 to 1. You can take the test for yourself here. (I took it and preferred Google)
The top search engines
There is a lot of money in search today. With competition fierce to be featured at the top of the list for “financial training & qualifications”, “best credit card offers” and so on – there is a lot at stake. Being featured at the top of search can mean the difference in thousands of sales vs. only a couple hundred.
Right now – Google is the top dog (by far) when it comes to search, followed by Bing and Yahoo at a distant second and close third (via eBiz, May 2013). Bing may be second – but they are not content and they have the money to try and compete.
Ways they are getting us to use Bing
One of the ways that Bing is competing and trying to gain more ground in search is by offering us rewards to search. That's right – they are offering you gift cards and prizes just by doing something you probably do every day: search.
Bing knows they are in a tough uphill battle against the industry leader. And – now – they aren't afraid to pull out all the stops. They've decided to reward their users.
Here's just a sampling of some of the things you can get by searching Bing:
- $5 Starbucks gift card
- $5 Amazon gift card
- 1 day movie rental at Redbox
- $15 RedEnvelope ecard
- $15 ProFlowers ecard
Then there are reward levels: Member, Silver and Gold. Once you get to the Gold level, the points you need to get some of these gifts is less – so you can get more, faster.
While I'm not sure how long they intend to offer the Bing Rewards Program – it is an interesting way to get folks searching. If you want to know more details – check it out.
I'm interested to know if you've tried the program yet – and how much have you earned? Would a brand rewarding you for trying their service make you switch from another one you are more loyal to?
I have been trying out Bing for a few days now. Bing seems to be faster on my phone, but sometimes it is just habit to go to Google.
(PS -Welcome to Social Fabric)
I have taken that test several times and ended up picking Google each time. There is nothing that can break me of my love for using Google as my primary search engine and it would be nice if Bing would quit trying.
When Bing! first rolled out, they had a cash-back rewards program that was extremely flawed (from the technical standpoint) but was pretty effective. I used it quite often to buy stuff and get good substantial cash-back rewards. However, once they discontinued it, I stopped using Bing.
Trying to buy there way to the top. Wow what a concept. I never have even used Bing, but I guess people will do so if they are offered money.
I have seen the commercials and I always have to laugh because I remember those Pepsi ads from years ago. I did not know they were offering rewards. I would try it, though I am curious as to if it influences their search results or not.
@John – we’re old aren’t we!?