If you haven't heard, or received your invite, the annual SEMPO State of the Market survey is currently looking for search marketers to give us this year's snapshot of the industry. You can find a link to the survey at the SEMPO site. Now in its third year, this survey has become the definitive year-over-year look at search marketing.
Jordan Rohan's opening keynote at the recent Search Insider Summit set the stage for three days of stirring debate, keen insight, and dropping buzzwords like they were going out of style. Since there's nothing like buzz monitoring to really get the pulse of today's search world, I kept a running tally of search buzzword usage at the Summit. Here are the results.
November '06 will go down as the month the search giants got serious about newspaper plays. Google has unveiled plans to enter ad management for newspaper classifieds across 50 papers; last week, Yahoo countered by entering strategic partnerships--starting with collaboration on job classifieds, but set to expand into Yahoo help with newspapers' maps and search presences--for 176 newspapers' online divisions.
Search engine marketing might seem old-hat and mainstream compared to emerging social media channels, but search's auction-based media buying is far more revolutionary. Despite the hype surrounding the new social advertising channels, however, some of the largest deals lately have involved sites that rebuild barriers to entry that search marketing demolished. The future of advertising might look like a mashup of the past.
Change is the constant within search. That's a function of the relative newness of the industry and the amount of attention and dollars it has received. So let's take a step back to see how far we've come.
In early November, I spoke at an Ad:Tech NY panel entitled "Planning and Execution of Search Engine Marketing Projects." In no particular order, here are elements I've found to be recurring obstacles in the quest for high search performance on Fortune 1000 level Web sites....
One of the last sessions of MediaPost's Search Insider Summit last week in Palm Springs, Calif. wound up a personal favorite, with Pressfeed's Sally Falkow, Pheedo's Bill Flitter and Social Media Club's Chris Heuer leading a discussion on how social media impacts search. A number of these issues involving social media are just now coming to the forefront and should affect search marketing for years to come....
Last week, advertisers got their first glimpse of the e-Media Exchange, the auction-based TV (and other traditional media) ad-buying exchange initiated by blue-chip advertisers like Wal-Mart, and powered by e-Bay. Said to be ready to roll in Q2 '07, the Exchange may--or may not--thrive. There are forces acting both against and in favor of its long-term survival.
Google certainly raised a few eyebrows with its recent acquisition of YouTube, especially since the site is barely a year old, has huge infrastructure costs, and significant copyright issues with which it has to contend. Throw in the fact that YouTube is just beginning to solidify a revenue model that has historically caused other online community sites to burn out, and you might wonder what Google is thinking, what they plan on doing with it, and how the acquisition should impact your own marketing efforts.
I'm a huge fan of passion. Curb the urge to snigger. When I say passion, I refer to it in the ideological way, not the sensual one (although I'm pretty fond of that as well). I believe passion trumps everything else: intelligence, education, money, social connections. Look at times when people have really moved the world in a meaningful way, and you'll always find passion....