It's that time of year. Time for lists about the Best Of This and the Worst Of That. It seems that oftentimes people build their lives around these lists. I knew a woman once who had a list of things to do before turning 30. This list included learning to play the drums and have a baby. Where's Tommy Lee when you need him?
While some people live by these lists or look forward to their publication, I confess that I just can't do it. I'm not wired to come up with New Year's resolutions or say, before I go here's what I want to do. Instead, I prefer to give thanks for what I've experienced.
So, as 2006 comes to a close, here are the things to which I Give Thanks.
To Google, for a $500 stock price and making it possible for my parents to finally understand what I do. Yeah, there's a lot more, but when your stock price is $500 and everyone loves you, what more do you want from me?
To MSN, for at least giving it a shot despite overwhelming odds and an industry full of Naysayers.
To Yahoo, for doing more with less and hoping Panama keeps everyone from a single-source system a year from now.
To the pioneers of this industry who have bootstrapped this far. If you could get us to this point, the evolution forward can only get easier.
To the new guard of search marketers, from the freshly minted agency search heads to rapidly growing search boutiques. You force us old dogs to keep innovating and pushing forward.
To Fortune 500 advertisers, for demanding that the traditional ad world give priority to search in channel planning.
To the readers of this space and the attendees at various conferences, for the e-mails, conversations, insights and feedback you've shared this year after reading a column or attending one of my sessions.
And, above all, to my Outrider colleagues. I've long said that in a business about technology, algorithms and data, at the core it's about the people and their interaction with all of the above. There is no one I'd rather go into battle with each day than you all. It's an honor and privilege to work with each of you.
You make me, our clients and the industry better.