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September 2006, Week 2 Marketing Archives

Friday, September 15, 2006

Mobile the Final Frontier for Search

This week is the CTIA wireless show and everyone's yapping about the unlimited prospects for mobile services.

Even though mobile phone networks had the jump on the Internet, the most exciting applications such as search have not taken hold in the mobile space. But Google, Yahoo, eBay, Microsoft and others are committed to developing worthy mobile services, and search needs to be at the heart of it all.

The most likely things people are going to search for from a mobile phone are entertainment, shopping and news, and Google has been buying companies to this end.

Searching from a mini keypad on a wireless network requires a subset of web search that delivers accurate results more quickly than general search. Attempts to get publishers to optimize content for mobile applications have died on the vine, so it's up to the search engines to filter results for mobiles.

At CTIA media moguls talked about the need for quality applications to deliver content. While mobile media consumption is exploding, why are media companies stuck in a service model where people have to sign up for only a fraction of the available content? Couldn't advertising pay for some of the bandwidth cost, with search engines aggregating the best content?

By forcing consumers to purchase services ala cart, they may be getting decent margins on the product they are selling, but they could move a lot more product with a search-driven buffet.

Mobile the Final Frontier for Search By Jason Dowdell at 12:32 PM
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Skype to Disrupt Mobile Phone Biz

NetGear announced the first Skype phone ($249) that runs over WiFi, and this has all the earmarks of a disruptive technology that telecom companies will have to counteract.

WiFi phones free users from monthly service charges, and Skype users no longer must have a PC nearby. Calls to other Skype users will be free, and calls to standard phones cost a fraction of today's prices.

Of course the big challenge for Skype is reliability, if users can't connect, they won't be customers for long. I have been using Skype every day for the past two months and was happy until the last week when my connection started sucking.

Marketers need to think about how WiFi phones will present new challenges and opportunities. Advertisers may have more inventory on Skype users' desktops as well as perhaps geotargeting customers on their phones as they roam about. But equally important is considering what might be lost. If the telecom industry declines substantially, what does that mean?

Often times disruptive technologies will have unanticipated consequences as they rollover into seemingly unrelated technologies. For example, DVRs are forcing TV advertisers to adjust, but they have also helped to create YouTube by making it easy to save content and then post it online.

Analyzing and planning for the ramifications of disruptive will keep others from eating your lunch.

Skype to Disrupt Mobile Phone Biz By Jason Dowdell at 11:18 AM
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Landor On A Roll With Brand Study in Fortune Magazine

Landor and associates pinged me last night about their new Breakaway Brands study that is the highlight of Fortune magazine this month. From the branding study...
"The 2006 study identifies the ten brands with the greatest percentage gains in brand health and business value as a result of superb brand strategy and execution over a three-year period, 2002-2005.

The 10 brands are:

  • iPod: Consumer Electronics

  • Viking: Major Appliances

  • Converse: Athletic Shoes

  • Robitussin: Cough & Cold

  • Best Buy: Electronics Retail

  • Kohls: Department Stores

  • Frenchs: Condiments

  • Geico: Insurance

  • Dove: Personal Care

  • eBay: Online Auction

Don't forget, we're interviewing one of Landor's own big wigs next week about his new book Brand Simple so stay tuned.

Landor On A Roll With Brand Study in Fortune Magazine By Jason Dowdell at 07:47 AM
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Thursday, September 14, 2006

Mocking the Death of a Salesman

Call it a new low in marketing in bad taste. The Liberty Life insurance company of South Africa is running television ads using a man who was murdered as the pitchman.

Brett Goldin was murdered in April and the company pulled the ads, but now they are back with the family's blessing.

If they guy was working for any other kind of company besides LIFE INSURANCE I'd say fine. But using the images of a guy who was killed in the prime of life is despicable. Look -- if it happened to him, it could happen to you, so send in your money now!

It is disrespectful and opportunistic.

Mocking the Death of a Salesman By John Gartner at 02:44 PM
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Superdistribution: Socially Selling Songs

The mobile phone and portable music player may soon become the marketers best friend. Wireless networks are enabling portable devices to share music and other media, and the telecoms and media companies see big dollars signs in the possibilities.

Friends can share or lend music with each other, and the files are locked by digital rights management software for limited time use. People have to pay for a key to unlock the files for permanent use, and the friend who shared the music can get credit towards future purchases.

The concept is called superdistribution, and it started in Japan and is spreading to Europe and slowly here.

Nokia and T-Mobile are among the companies participating in the Open Mobile Alliance (OMA), which is devising the specifications so that content can be easily shared. Superdistribution is also seen as a mechanism for viral marketing by releasing content with advertising (or advertising that is content) for free.

Imagine if YouTube videos could be easily downloaded and shared between iPods and cell phones. Advertisers would salivate for a five second pre-roll before these viral videos. Google and MTV recently announced a deal for promoting videos that touches on superdistribution.

I came across this from CoreMedia, a DRM firm and OMA member. Kudos to CoreMedia for using a tag cloud on their home page to navigate topics of importance to them.

Microsoft has appropriated the idea with its new Zune music players, which can wirelessly share music to friends, who can listen to the songs for up to three days.

This is social networking taken to its fullest possible monetization, where everyone gets a piece of the action for sharing what they like. It's been slow to develop, but the possibilities are huge.

Superdistribution: Socially Selling Songs By John Gartner at 01:40 PM
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Google Says MSN Search is #1

The debate is over. You know that raging debate about which search engine is the best? Yep, it's over. Google has given up its seat as the top dog and has dubbed MSN the #1 Search Engine.

Google Says MSN Search is #1 By Matt O'Hern at 12:21 PM
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Upcoming CEO Interviews and Marketing Shift Changes aFoot

You might notice that we're beginning to get rid of a bunch of junk that's been cluttering up Marketing Shift. Well, that's because we're getting ready to roll out the new layout (compliments of one Axis of Stevil). We'll also be introducing some new areas of functionality that should make your daily tromp here much more interesting.

In other news we're also doing a lot of interviews right now. Last week we posted our interview with Kevin Rose of Digg and next week we'll be putting up even more interviews. Here is a sampling of what you can expect.

  • Plastic Surgeon from the E! tv show "Dr. 90210" taking marketing to a whole new place.

  • is making a lot of changes and we're talking to their executives about what it means to you.

  • UPlayMe CEO Interview & application review.

  • Review of AdBrite, Adify and Yahoo! Publisher contextual ad programs for blogs.

  • Review of Google Apps for your Domain

  • Interview with Allen P. Adamson, author of Brand Simple

  • There's a lot more to come so stick around

This just in, the chumps over at don't won't get back to us on scheduling an interview. If you're interested in us interviewing then post your thoughts as comments here.

Upcoming CEO Interviews and Marketing Shift Changes aFoot By Jason Dowdell at 10:06 AM
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Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Live Search Lives

Microsoft has delivered its updated search portal, this time with a bare-bones interface that out-Googles Google.

The useful features to me are integrated blogs into Web search, and the advanced features allow you to customize your results for those that are more recent, on more popular sites. Microsoft added a new algorithm for related searches based on others previous queries.

One feature I haven't seen is that if a page comes from a news source and has a date, why not show how recent it is in the results? I would like to know if what I'm seeing is really news or something from long ago.

It will be interesting to see how Microsoft leverages the new search capabilities with AdCenter to chip away at Google's market share. I'm going to switch from Google for a while to see how Live Search stacks up.

Live Search Lives By John Gartner at 02:53 PM
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YouTube's Catch-22

YouTube has billions (slight exaggeration) of users, but not much ad revenue. The company's primary conundrum -- much of the most popular content is copyrighted material that is pirated, so advertisers won't spend money to support it.

What's a fledgling company to do?

How about this - go to the media giants with hat in hand and offer to cut a deal. They will work together in recording the best clips from TV shows and share the revenue.

The reality is that with DVRs and easy video uploads, every time someone screws up on camera (see Rick Sutcliffe, George Allen, Bert Blyleven, etc), Jon Stewart rips someone a new one, or Jimmy Kimmel tosses out a great line, it will be put online.

So, the media companies can sell advertising against their "best of" content, or continue to allow pirated versions to be run on YouTube and no one makes money.

NBC gets it, to a degree Today they decided to do the "NBBC" venture that will include full episodes plus clips from its affiliate stations. They may not put the funniest live mishaps online, but it's a start.

The music industry was in denial about media sharing online for years, and see where it got them?

YouTube's Catch-22 By John Gartner at 02:07 PM
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Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Marketing Football to Singles

Maybe it's the lack of sleep, but sometimes it's fun to look at the way marketers can twist data to match their message.

Today's dandy comes from dating site True, which conducted a survey of singles that found that appreciation for (or tolerance of) football is important to meeting your match.

True's survey of 4,600 singles found that "more than half (57 percent) of respondents claimed they would prefer their mate share a similar passion in sports." Okay, so the skeptic in me says that maybe placing too much importance on sports is WHY they are still single. I love sports, but I never let a woman's zest for sports determine our future prospects, and my wife could care less about sports. If they want to watch a game with you great, but I don't think women similarly expect men to share a passion for accessory shopping.

One-fourth of survey participants (25 percent) said that they would actually prefer to be together with their mate while watching their favorite sports team.

Turning that around (my statistics degree isn't wasted!), that means that 75 percent of people don't care to be with their S.O. when watching sports. Wow, way to make 'em feel important. Sure, it's important to have "away time" but only a quarter would rather be "with?" Again, maybe that's why they are so many people logging on to find a date.

More than one-third (38 percent) of all survey participants said that they find it a turn-on when a date knows as much (or more) about sports as them.

So ladies, that means that the majority of guys don't find it attractive if you know more than them about sports, so put away that copy of SI and pick up a copy of People instead.

Marketing Football to Singles By Jason Dowdell at 01:47 PM
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MIVA Debuts In Line Ads

Pay for performance ad network MIVA has joined the growing list of companies that dynamically links the text of articles to pay per click ads. MIVA InLine adds links to keywords within blog posts or articles.

Or, publishers can link to other parts of their websites with their keywords to create additional traffic. Advertisers can buy keywords across websites, similar to what Vibrant Media does with its IntelliTXT product.

The advantage to in line contextual advertising is that it doesn't take up real estate and adds another revenue stream, but on the other hand, if too many words are linked, it can be distracting to the reader.

MIVA Debuts In Line Ads By John Gartner at 12:30 PM
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Digg Algorithim Has Been Updated

Our countless coverage of continues with the news that Digg has updated their algorithm for promoting stories. Kevin Rose posted it on the Digg blog. While it is nothing that we haven't told you before it is interesting non the less.
digg now takes several factors into consideration when promoting stories (other than just total number of diggs): story source (is it a blog re-post, or the original story), user history, traffic levels of the category the story falls under, and user reports. This should help us eliminate some off-topic content and SPAM. The only change you might notice is that stories will no longer be promoted at 15 diggs. Some will be promoted with less, others with more. digg on.

Digg Algorithim Has Been Updated By Jason Dowdell at 12:22 AM
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Monday, September 11, 2006

Engine Searches Marketing Tools

Online marketing and advertising now has it's own search engine. GoDefy, which has been in beta for over a year, helps online marketers find products, services and news.

The interface looks like a barely enhanced version of an open source architecture (it was built on Ruby on Rails), but it can lead to books, articles and products for categories such as AdSense, eBay, affiliate networks and pay per click. But searches for terms such as "analytics" or "Performics" returned 0 results.

GoDefy is far from comprehensive and needs to aggregate the best of the news sites that track online marketing (like, ahem, MarketingShift). A vertical search engine for search marketing is a good idea, but GoDefy has a way to go.

Found via SiteProNews.

Engine Searches Marketing Tools By Jason Dowdell at 02:33 PM
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EMI Sings for Mobile Ads

The reeling music industry is looking for any way to make a buck, the latest of which is supporting music through mobile advertising. EMI signed a deal with T-Mobile and Rhythm NewMedia to deliver an ad-supported music service to phones.

While EMI's deal with Spiral Frog will likely be a short-lived affair, using ads to pay for delivering music videos to mobile phones could pay off for all parties. Music videos are promotions for buying the music, and people who want to see a video on their phones are willing to view an ad for the pleasure. Unlike music downloads there aren't a thousand ways to get a music video on your phone, so watching a brief ad is tolerable.

Advertisements have paid for free music on radio since Marconi, so mobile phones should be no different. But streaming versus downloads is a different set of economics for cost and benefit for music publishers, and they should build their revenue models accordingly.

Found via Adotas.

EMI Sings for Mobile Ads By John Gartner at 01:04 PM
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Sunday, September 10, 2006

NBC + NFL Football = Pink?

NBC just doesn't get it. They haven't had NFL football on their channel in decades and it shows. They've promoted the Manning vs Manning match-up all week and by all means it should be a good game. But with beer in hand I sat down on my couch and turned on NBC and nearly fell on the floor with what I saw.

Everyone knows the popular Monday Night Football song by Hank Williams Jr, you know the one that gets the chills going through your body as he belts out his famous line "ARE YOUR READY FOR SOME FOOTBALLLLLLLLLLL?."

Well, NBC had their chance to make their mark and have a just as catchy song etched in our brains with the highly touted "Manning Bowl" kicking off the Sunday Night NFL TV season, but they blew it. Big time. NBC's counter to Hank Williams Jr. was Pink. Yes, Pink! The semi famous and 100% obnoxious female punk rapper/singer. I guess Paris Hilton and Britney Spears were unavailable.

Now call me crazy, but I believe either the suits at NBC have their ties too tight cutting off circulation to their brain or they are just plain retarded. Now I'm no television guru or rocket scientist but if I had to take a guess I wouldn't think Pink is exactly what the target demographic (NFL Fans) wanted to see. Heck, most of them may not even know who Pink is, let alone want to see her sing the corniest song possible before an NFL football game.

Of all of the singers and entertainers in this world, Pink, would be on the bottom of my list for this intro. In fact her arch rival, Jessica Simpson, would have been a better choice because at least she is easy on the eyes.

NBC really missed the boat on this one and not the missed like the boat just left the dock, this ship is halfway around the globe with no return in sight. Someone deserves to be demoted to the mail room for this.

For all of the 18-45 year old males NFL fans or at least to keep me from vomiting every Sunday night, I hope they reconsider what they have done and make a different choice that maybe their target demographic will not find as nauseating as Pink.

NBC + NFL Football = Pink? By Jason Dowdell at 08:14 PM
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« September 2006 Week 1 September 2006 Week 3 »

  • Week 1 (20 entries) September 1-9
  • Week 2 (15 entries) September 10-16
  • Week 3 (18 entries) September 17-23
  • Week 4 (11 entries) September 24-30

NBC + NFL Football = Pink?
this pick thing is way out of hand ,,,,this is foo...
by don
NBC + NFL Football = Pink?
pink was great just what snf needed...
by larry guerra
NBC + NFL Football = Pink?
The NBA on NBC is the greatest sports telecast eve...
by Darrell Matchkens
Google Says MSN Search is #1
Msn Offers a different search result search to goo...
by Jay
NBC + NFL Football = Pink?
I love Pink. She likes football more than ladies ...
by Jack

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