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August 2006, Week 2 Marketing Archives

Friday, August 11, 2006

Money Follows Applied Talent

This is more of a thought of the day than anything else but something many people (including myself from time to time) need to be reminded of.

Money Follows Applied Talent

Think about that statement for just a little bit. Especially those of you who have no excuses for not getting stuff done because we all know you're incredibly smart and talented. The key word in the statement is "applied". Apply yourself, today.

Money Follows Applied Talent By Jason Dowdell at 02:57 PM
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Social Philanthropy & Google PageRank

I encourage all of you to find a new, notable blog that has no PageRank yet, link to it and say why you linked to it. Yes this is how the blogosphere began, back when noone knew what blogs were. But in today's world of, "I'm only going to link to the A-List bloggers so I can linkbait them", linking to a low traffic blog is rare. So here goes...

Morten (Martin too)is doing some cool things and it doesn't matter whether or not you take notice right now, later you'll be forced to. Hat tip Shellen.

Here's another good guy you've never heard of taking me up on my challenge.

Social Philanthropy & Google PageRank By Jason Dowdell at 12:55 PM
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Advertisers Support Adware

A report from the Center for Democracy and Technology says that advertisers paid to have their ads placed in 60 percent of all adware that the organization identified.

Advertisers who continue to play this game should have more than just their knuckles wrapped. Hello Eliot Spitzer, keep on these guys!

Zango and Direct Revenue need to be stopped, as they are not only frustrating consumers, but also giving all online advertisers a bad reputation. The laws related to surreptitiously installing unwanted software need to be strengthened and more vigorously enforced, and the IAB and other such groups should support the effort.

Found via Adotas.

Advertisers Support Adware By John Gartner at 07:10 AM
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Newspapers Take On YouTube

Could your local Daily Times Journal be the next home for user-generated video?

In a lengthy article on Editor and Publisher, Kevin Mireles describes how the websites of newspapers could better compete by adding a splash of camcorder video.

I agree that the rags are enriched by video, such as this story on the Asbury Park Press about Kevin Smith returning to Jersey which included video highlights. Online papers are competing with the local TV station websites (which are generally woeful), so adding video levels the playing field.

Sure, getting Joe Neighbor's clips of lighting hitting a tree would be a great compliment to a story about the ensuing power outage, but vetting and editing the user submissions AND posting the stuff in time to accompany an article is expensive and time consuming. The difference between YouTube is that newspaper articles are mostly time-sensitive, so said article disappears after a day max. Also, wouldn't local TV stations have more expertise in video editing, and be a more natural fit?

A "best of" local video, as Mireles suggests, makes more sense, and I'm fully on board with his idea of video classifieds, which would allow local merchants to advertise through a more exciting medium than a dull 2x2 text box.

This is all just another argument supporting the expansion of video advertising, which will become a bigger deal than most folks anticipate.

Newspapers Take On YouTube By John Gartner at 06:48 AM
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Thursday, August 10, 2006

AOL and Blinkx Team for the Kids

It's probably not the best time (see below) for AOL to launch a search service aimed at school kids, but it happened. AOL partnered with video search engine Blinkx for a multimedia search service that can specify the grade level of the content being searched. Ah, to be a kid again.

Although you don't here as much about them, Blinkx is assembling the most robust set of international content partners for professional video as well as launching a large stable of user-generated video including its own channels, SelfCastTV (U.K.) and Garage Video (U.S.).

The two biggest challenges for video search engines are making money, and because the archives are getting so big, personalization. It is overwhelming to search millions of videos, especially when the content tagging is very rudimentary. Blinkx has an advertising channel that only boasts a few searches, but letting users rank the ads is smart, and should be incorporated into the ad networks' delivery analytics.

While Blinkx has allows users to customize RSS feeds, they should create some default channels that help to navigate their content. For example, a news channel could organize the best of the breaking stories for those who like to view rather than read news. Add in Digg-still ratings, and voila, a new ad-supported video service.

AOL and Blinkx Team for the Kids By John Gartner at 12:13 PM
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Balancing Search Privacy and Personalization

AOL's apocalyptic screw up of releasing 20 million search queries underscores the challenge of search engines and marketers in wanting to track consumer behaviors while respecting their privacy.

The release of query data for 650,000 users will be ultimately lead to several class action lawsuits as some malicious people will sift through the data and use it to stalk, embarrass, or defraud AOL users. It's Christmas in August for criminals, and possibly even law enforcement which could use any data that indicates child pornography or pedophilia to target individuals.

Of course consumers need to be careful in the search terms that they use, and AOL's tying search queries to subscriber IDs should end today. Anyone who uses AOL search when signed on to AOL is asking for trouble.

The burden is undoubtedly on the search engines to only release aggregated data cleansed of any identifying information. Search data that is stored on search engine's servers should be limited to individual sessions only. Consumers who offer -- and are compensated for -- being tracked over time -- should have that data stored on their PCs exclusively. Search history data stored locally should be the only function with access to the series of session information.

Perhaps the fallout from AOL's debacle will prompt the other search engines to develop anonymous browsing that allows for personalization.

Balancing Search Privacy and Personalization By John Gartner at 11:34 AM
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Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Cracking the Viral Marketing Code

Creating a catchy viral marketing ad is equal parts art and science, according to PopularMedia's Jim Calhoun, writing for Adotas. It shouldn't be funny business unless buzz is all you want in return.

Viral marketing's ability to capture a wide audience through word of mouth buzz has prompted companies such as PopularMedia to develop consulting services that emphasize test marketing and ROI. The company has created an advertising network to distribute ads that deliver value to the viewer and the client.

While most viral marketing starts on video sites through YouTube or by widespread sharing of emails by friends, we may see more attempts like this to produce ads that are engaging and beneficial to the companies into traditional advertising channels.

Publishers like Salon can justify producing free content if readers first watch an ad, so why not emphasize engaging content that can become viral sensations? Not easy, but possible.

Cracking the Viral Marketing Code By John Gartner at 02:13 PM
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Apple Seeds RSS Ad Channel

Pheedo is demonstrating the power of RSS to serve (and serve ads) to niche audiences with its Apple advertising channel. The channel includes many of the top publishers who cover Apple and has become the most popular RSS feed for Pheedo. Advertisers looking to market to the rabid audience can have ads interspersed between the news articles of the must-reed pubs.

Pheedo says the channel is a success because Apple fans are embracing RSS more quickly than the average netizen, and part of this is due to Safari's built-in RSS reader.

We should expect other niches such as car enthusiasts and celebrity trackers to start leveraging their audiences by inserting ad feeds. Obviously the more targeted the audience the better, and having a direct pathway to the desktop via RSS is a strong sell.

For news publishers and bloggers who offer time-sensitive content, Pheedo offers a low-impact entree into RSS. By the time the next presidential election season starts, you can expect news organizations who follow politics to be fully on board.

Apple Seeds RSS Ad Channel By John Gartner at 01:40 PM
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Matt Cutts is Google Dancing Me!

Searching for Matt Cutts at the Google party, you are no where to be found. Give me a ring 321.720.9535!

Posted for Jason via the phone.

Matt Cutts is Google Dancing Me! By Matt O'Hern at 12:39 AM
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Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Should MSN AdCenter Google Dance, Or Not?

Friend and former coworker, Thomas Shaffer is here in San Jose at Search Engine Strategies and is a little bit afraid of going to the Google Dance tonight... Why you ask? Because he works at Microsoft on the MSN AdCenter team and last year (at the Google Dance) they caught some grief by the higher ups at Google who thought the AdCenter team was just there to poach clients.

I'm trying to convince Thomas to go to Google tonight but he's still a bit scared. How about some support from the blogosphere for Thomas and the rest of the MSN AdCenter team... What do ya say?!

Should MSN AdCenter Google Dance, Or Not? By Jason Dowdell at 08:21 PM
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Marketers Need to Be Five-Tool Players

Having a creative pitch or stellar product isn't enough anymore. To fully succed in marketing online, you must master the emerging interactive options.

For example, social networking is becoming part and parcel of promoting films and products, and the new documentary The Ground Truth is taking the concept to a new level.

The Focus Features film follows American soldiers deployed in Iraq from their initial recruitment through their reintegration with society. Focus Features is creating a social network space on AOL's new AIM Pages area that will feature the soldiers who star in the film, and AOL hopes that many veterans will also create pages to share their experiences.

The companies should also encourage veterans to vlog about their battle experiences or reaction the film as well, which would create instant viral videos to promote the documentary, which is also being released on DVD.

Community drives word of mouth marketing, and encouraging users to generate their own content around a product (in this case a film) can do wonders for exposure. Incorporating new media strategies such as interactive video ads and working with bloggers are becoming requisite talents for marketers.

Found via MediaPost.

Marketers Need to Be Five-Tool Players By John Gartner at 02:09 PM
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RSS Marketing Taking Baby Steps

RSS as marketing tool is at about the same stage of development as my son Dylan. At 20 weeks, he is aware, but not quite ready to crawl. Even today the benefits make the effort worthwhile, but wait six months.

Rudimentary tools and specialty services for creating RSS feeds are available, but it is still too labor intensive for most marketers to master themselves. Similarly, advertisements are still the exception and not the rule as marketers and publishers learn strategies and do the cost-benefit analysis.

And as Robin Stanton points out on Adotas, getting exposure for your feeds is a pain. You have to register with a plethora of the niche of RSS and blog search engines (see this handy guide), which is unacceptable for a technology that wants to become mass market.

Marketers can track their products and competitors via RSS news feeds, but today that requires using a good RSS reader or cobbling together feeds using the digital equivalent of bailing wire and popsicle sticks. NewsGator allows you to group your feeds into folders, and search on those folders, which makes it a snap to track a topic. Since I started using it every day, I can scan feeds in one quarter of the time it took previously.

Firefox has a built-in RSS reader, and hopefully Microsoft's new IE and Vista will take RSS aggregation into the mainstream. Mastering RSS today will put you far ahead of your competition

RSS Marketing Taking Baby Steps By John Gartner at 12:40 PM
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Monday, August 07, 2006

Google Taps MTV for Video Ads

Google has taken the first step towards integrating video ads into AdSense by sealing a deal with MTV. Ads that feature clips from SpongeBob SquarePants, the MTV Video Awards and Laguna Beach will be available to Adsense publishers, and although it's not clearly spelled out, as content that advertisers can include as part of their pitches.

The video ads will try to get more readers to pay attention to AdSense and show that Google's platform is ready for prime time distribution. The revenue will be split with publishers, who would probably expect a much higher CPM than text ads.

YouTube should start leveraging some of its popular clips this way too. The authors could get a slice of the revenue, and publishers and YouTube would get revenue by integrating humorous clips.

Found via Adotas.

Google Taps MTV for Video Ads By John Gartner at 01:58 PM
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User Actions Give True Click Throughs

Microsoft researchers say tracking an entire user session can help search engines to detect true clicks from frauds. Microsoft published results (PDF)of a study aggregating the results of 3,500 user sessions to separate the noise from search queries.

Microsoft says that by tracking the actions before and after a click through, the company learned how to more accurately detect bogus clicks and provide improved page ranking than traditional automated methods.

While consumers may not like the idea of having their entire sessions tracked (anonymously of course), any tools that can help reduce click fraud need to be investigated. Microsoft also says the its research can lead to personalized search results that match individual behaviors. If Microsoft has a real breakthrough it could help the company's lagging search engine, or at least force Google and Yahoo to more aggressively address click fraud (by working with the IAB etc.) and ad pricing.

User Actions Give True Click Throughs By Jason Dowdell at 12:42 PM
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« August 2006 Week 1 August 2006 Week 3 »

  • Week 1 (10 entries) August 1-5
  • Week 2 (14 entries) August 6-12
  • Week 3 (13 entries) August 13-19
  • Week 4 (15 entries) August 20-26
  • Week 5 (11 entries) August 27-31

RSS Marketing Taking Baby Steps
changing diaper how?can you teach me?coz i dont kn...
by lovelyshiny cathlyn
RSS Marketing Taking Baby Steps
You advise waiting another six months and say that...
by Sally Falkow
Social Philanthropy & Google PageRank
Think nothing of it, what's a few links betwe...
by Jason
Social Philanthropy & Google PageRank
Thanx for mentioning me. I hope to live up to the ...
by Morten Lund
RSS Marketing Taking Baby Steps
The big change will come - as you've mentione...
by Matt Ambrose

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