Right out of college in
2005, Bridget Mackinson landed a gig at search-driven social marketing agency Reprise Media. By 2007, she had earned such a solid reputation that Reprise asked her to help set up new offices in San
Francisco. Out west, she quickly rose to the position of Media Director, where she oversees multiple campaigns and a large portion of the multimillion-dollar Microsoft business. Since Mackinson was
assigned to Microsoft's search business two years ago, its search marketing performance has improved "dramatically," according to Mark Grote, Senior Search Advertising Manager at
Microsoft. Furthermore, Grote calls Mackinson "the finest [campaign and client manager] I have worked with in my 10 years in search marketing." Not bad for a self-described "Jersey
What's your greatest professional achievement to date?
Helping to build Reprise Media's San Francisco office while developing the process for implementing hundreds of unique search campaigns for Microsoft. Now our search team is an integral part of the campaign planning process.
What's your favorite pastime or hobby, and how does it lend itself to your professional life?
I love to read, everything from New York Times bestsellers and autobiographies, to search industry blogs and marketing basics. While The Lovely Bones is hard to connect to managing a paid-search campaign, keeping on top of what is going on across all different aspects of the technology industry gives me a window into different ways to approach client needs, and opens the door to testing new concepts.
What's it like competing in a market (search), so thoroughly dominated by one player (Google)?
We really focus more on what is performing best for each campaign. While Google may still have the largest market share, Bing, Yahoo and vertical engines drive strong, qualified traffic necessary for success.
What recent or imminent industry development most concerns you?
The increased scrutiny on ads triggered by personal information. I'm not sure the fear some people have of personalized results is warranted. The positive impact when a well-targeted experience gives you relevant results can't be discounted, and you still have the control to make the final click.
When will this headline run in The Wall Street Journal: "Microsoft Overtakes Google In Search"?
I think the spotlight on search market share is overblown. It is not necessarily about being number one in market share - you have to also look at product innovation. Over the past year, Bing has shown they are moving forward and pushing the rest of the industry on features and functionality. At the end of the day, it is about who is going to be more profitable and innovative.
How can the industry best nurture young talent?
The search industry gives people the chance to take on challenges. Getting the opportunity to test out-of-the-box tactics and take risks helps to not only discover new ways to reach client goals, but results in more ideas to test.