Reach out to the Workday Consumer for campaign impact

Jan 7, 2023

The Workday Consumer has been on the rise. He or she switches effortlessly between personal, worker, and consumer mode throughout their day due to the pandemic. This behavior can have a profound impact on how you advertise to them.

Microsoft Advertising teamed up with Forrester Consulting to research how the shopping and work habits of remote workers have changed. This research examines the shopping habits of these consumers and the nuances of their work and shopping behavior. We also discuss how advertisers can reach them.

The Workday Consumer Mindset

We must remember that 62% of those surveyed stated they switch between different mindsets during work hours to be more effective at reaching the Workday Consumer. This is when they search for and buy products and services. They may also spend time browsing social media and enjoying entertainment.

Mobile is still an important part of the decision-making process, but many consumers still use their PCs to search for and buy high-value items from different categories.

In fact, nearly two-thirds of respondents (63%) said they spent more time on their work PC than before the pandemic, and 56% said they use work laptops and videoconferencing software for personal purposes. Nearly half (48%) of respondents indicated that they do not prefer to switch devices for work tasks.

It's important that you consider the mindset of Workday Consumers when targeting them. This will influence the tasks and purchases they choose to do.

Three ways to reach the Workday Consumer

Here are some ideas to help you plan your campaign as you review your methods for reaching Workday Consumers.

1. Consider working mode

Workday Consumers work time and location has changed drastically. They may be hybrid, desk-based or frontline, office-based or remote. In each of these situations their mindset will be different.

It is important to have a deep understanding about your audience in order to reach them and keep them engaged. Use methods like observational studies, self-reported studies and location tracking.

Like Workday Consumers who have changed their outlook, advertisers need to shift their targeting strategies. Automated products can help you understand your audience's behavior and adapt to your search requests in real-time. Consider using:

  • Responsive search ads to optimize copy and refine messaging to appeal to the audience's mindset when they are searching.

2. Engage Workday Customers throughout the funnel

In order to retain, convert and attract Workday Consumers it is crucial to optimize messaging, content, advertising, and search engine optimization for native, PC, and search. This is especially important when working on upper-funnel campaigns, since Workday Consumers often research products and services while they are at work.

After they have completed their search, it is time to start targeting them online. Engage partners that permit targeting based upon signals such as opted into digital consumer tracking panel, contextual insights and time-of-day information. This will help to predict audiences.

  • Smart Campaigns employ automation to learn from and adapt to customers' decisions in real-time.
  • Dynamic remarketing lists are an ad type that shows searchers ads based upon what they've seen, considered, or bought from your website.

3. Use their verticals for research

This is not just a vertical issue, it affects all advertisers.

The top 10 categories researched (in order) are travel, clothing, tools, sporting goods, electronics, financial products and services, health and personal care, household appliances, media/entertainment, and cars.

People who work are more productive and have a positive outlook on purchasing and researching when they're working. This mindset has helped to shape the consumer journey. Often, this research takes place on the employees' work computers.

  • Vertical ads can be an effective way to reach Workday Consumers in the bottom of your funnel.

Vertical ads differ for each industry and category. They target specific information (pre-click), and give it in an engaging, easily-read format. Vertical ads in the travel, financial, and automotive industries are on the rise.

The Workday Consumer and niche persons

For years, consumers' attention spans were famously compared to those of goldfish. You must now consider their short attention spans, fragmented browsing and distractible browsing as they move more frequently between work tasks. It is now more important to know your audience well than ever.

We took a deep look at our data to find our new attitudes, behaviors and how they are affecting our ability to reach and engage customers in all industries. They are:

  • Digital Nomads
  • Empowered Activists
  • Luxury Shoppers
  • Self-Care Enthusiasts

Download the booklet for a wealth of information on these attitudes.

The Workday Consumer behavior shows up across all these personas, as well as others you may have developed yourself. Read on for tips on how we applied the Workday Consumer mindset to the four new personas for ideas on how you might apply the thinking to your own personas.

Luxury Shopper

We know that the Workday Consumer works remotely while researching, buying products and services and performing chores. They also manage finances and consume entertainment. If they are also Luxury Shoppers, then they will have a few other characteristics.

Online Luxury Shopper wants to elevate every day experiences with the finest things, and they are happy shopping online. They are browsing, researching, and looking online for luxury products.

They can be found through multiple search engines. 51% searched for vacations, while 43% searched for business-related subjects.

Workday Consumer Luxury Shoppers look at features before they buy and are often quick to switch jobs. It is important to remind them to go back to their sites, so that they are closer to making a purchase before they click.

  • Multimedia ads are only available to Microsoft Advertising. They drive faster engagement by combining text with images for the look of social media ads. For people with limited time, these can earn their attention quickly.
  • Ad extensions increase the effectiveness of ads and help customers find you by grabbing their attention and positioning your message prior to clicking. This makes it easy for shoppers with short attention spans to find what they are looking for.
  • Microsoft Audience Network allows users to target audiences and engage with them as they surf and search websites, such as MSN, Microsoft Edge or Your ads meet consumers where they are, and reminds them to reengage with your brand.
  • In-market audiences are curated lists containing users who are most likely to be interested in a specific product or service. This helps you to cut through the noise and reach the most interested users, so they don’t waste time searching.

Empowered Activist

The Empowered Actor is a consumer who spends money on brands that reflect their values. They want ethical, inclusive, small-business-oriented brands that are eco-friendly and inclusive. And they vote with the wallet.

Microsoft Advertising's Empowered Activists are 33% more likely than others to buy online if they have heard that the company or product is environmentally friendly.

They use multiple devices in their day to shop for products, company and brand value research, and many other devices during the day. On the Microsoft Search Network, we saw a 141% year-over-year (YoY) increase in beauty searches for black-owned and minority-owned related terms.5

  • You can add business attributes to your search ads to highlight the mutual value between your brand's customers and your company. Examples include carbon-neutral, minority-owned, and wheelchair accessible, among others.

Self-Care Enthusiasts

Self-Care Enthusiasts like to spend time with their loved ones and on their mental health. They want brands that can improve their mental and physical health. This audience works hard across all aspects of life. Because their time is so limited, they must be efficient with their time.

This group consistently multitasks between work, school, life and leisure activities.

  • To make sure that you are reaching the right audiences at the right time, use Inmarket Audiences to create curated lists of users who have purchased a particular category.

Digital Nomads

Digital Nomads work from anywhere and are flexible, location-independent individuals who make a living online. They can travel and change places as long as there's internet access.

Digital Nomads are the ultimate Workday consumer, searching for housing, transport, and all the other amenities that come with living in new areas. Consider using:

  • Promote your property with Property Promotion Ads. These ads will inspire you to help them make a decision and get them excited early on in their planning process.
  • Hotel Price Ads showcase rates alongside photos, directions, availability, reviews, and more while providing engaging information at the decision point.

Targeting the Workday Consumer will require targeting based upon a solid first-party strategy, signals such opted in consumer tracking panels, and contextual insight to predict audiences and behavior. While some aspects of the pandemic such as virtual happy hour have come and gone, the integration of work and life is here to stay. Be sure to be there for the Workday Consumer when they make decisions.

Keep in touch

Sign up for the weekly Microsoft Advertising Insider newsletter for additional Workday Consumer topics and insights, product news, tips and tricks, thought leadership, customer success stories and resources.


1. A commissioned study conducted by Forrester Consulting on behalf of Microsoft, November 2021. This online global survey covered 5,329 working consumers. They were aged 18 or older and had made an order online in the six previous months. The 1,301 respondents were also asked to identify their decision-makers in marketing and advertising.

2. Microsoft Advertising Luxury Shopping Study, 2021.

3. GlobalWebIndex, U.S., June 2020-June 2021.

4. GlobalWebIndex, U.S., Q1-Q4 2021.

5. Microsoft internal data, U.S. May 2019-August 2021, and May-December YoY figures.

About the Author

Microsoft Advertising allows you to connect with more than one billion people at the right times in your work and personal lives. The Microsoft ecosystem provides access to an audience that has higher buying power, spends more online and is more likely to engage with ads to try new offers. Whether you are creating a branding or performance campaign, we offer advertising solutions that run the entire marketing funnel, including search, native, display and video - powered by the Microsoft Advertising ad platform and DSP, SSP and Curate advertising technology. Reach people across Microsoft properties such MSN,,, Microsoft News, Microsoft Edge, Microsoft News, Microsoft Edge, Microsoft News, Microsoft Edge, Microsoft Edge and Microsoft News. Also reach partners like AOL. Yahoo. and DuckDuckGo. Microsoft Advertising. Great relationships start here.

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