• 2009: Year Of The Calculated Risk
    In difficult times comes great opportunity -- an opportunity for companies to take calculated risks in order to establish and grow market position and leadership. Risk is an inherent factor in life. The risk-adverse have given up looking at their monthly 401k, or 201k depending on your depth of losses, statements. Then again, those with low risk tolerance are likely best staying home with the lights off avoiding the news, peanut butter and low-flying birds. So where in the search space are the opportunities for greatest calculated risk to be taken? I see a few areas for advertisers, their agencies …
  • Evolution In The Face Of Adversity
    I am an unrepentant Darwinist, which probably doesn't surprise anyone who reads my columns on a regular basis. The whole topic of evolution and emergent behaviors in complex systems constantly fascinates me. As Steven Johnson pointed out in his recent book, "Emergence," the theme of patterns rising from complexity is ubiquitous and could well define the 21st century.
  • Yahoo's Updated ToS: The Fox Eats The Hens, The Eggs And Itself
    This week I'm compelled to continue banging the drum on a topic that is getting a second wind across many other search marketing blogs and also in Janel Landis' Search Insider column from last Friday. Last summer, Yahoo took the liberty of updating its standard terms of service to allow itself to modify paid search accounts as it sees fit, leaving the advertiser to accept full responsibility for Yahoo's keyword updates, copy updates, and other campaign modifications.
  • Have You Driven A Search Engine Lately?
    You may be used to using your phone as a search engine, and you've seen ideas for years about your TV serving as a search engine, but have you thought about your car as a search engine? Ford's Director of Connected Services, Doug VanDagens, discusses the company's new service that allows you to connect to the Internet through your car.
  • Is There Life After Search Trade Shows?
    For the past decade, we, along many of our competitor agencies, have faithfully supported the various search trade shows with exhibition fees, sponsorship fees, travel fees, and the intangible costs of flying sales and marketing staffs hither and yon to meet and greet folks on the show floor. We did so because even though attending these shows was a pain, the pluses of being there always outweighed all the costs and hassles. To put it simply, we always got some ROI (and there's nothing dearer to a search marketer's heart than ROI) in the form of qualified leads, a fair …
  • New Year -- New Need for Resolution
    On Jan. 5, Yahoo notified advertisers of a change in its Terms and Conditions. This change has been receiving quite a bit of buzz in industry forums, and rightly so. Yahoo is now going to help advertisers optimize their campaigns. Yahoo may add new keywords, create new ads and even optimize your account and you are responsible for these changes. Oh, I almost forgot, if you send a request in writing, they will give you all the details of what they changed for you. If you don't like the changes, you are still financially responsible for them; however, they will …
  • To Google's Competitors: Please, This Year, Do Something Amazing!
    A month ago yesterday, I was on stage in Park City, Utah at the Search Insider Summit, talking about Google's domination of the search space. I took Microsoft and Yahoo to task for not mounting a more significant challenge to Google's dominance. It could be my imagination, but it seemed that for the rest of the Summit, I felt a bit of a chill in the air between myself and the Yahoo and Microsoft reps that ventured to Park City. I suspect the feeling was that as the emcee and moderator, I should have been less opinionated and more neutral. …
  • Haiku 2.0 -- 2009 Edition
    For my first column of 2009, I thought I'd give Haiku 2.0 another try and share my outlook for the year, 95 characters at a time.
  • 5 Mobile Search Trends For 2009
    Trend #1: Content and commerce transaction revenues will continue to dwarf mobile advertising revenue -- and will come from more off-portal sources. According to Jupiter Research and numerous other sources, mobile content transactions generated more than $25 billion in worldwide revenue in 2008 and is projected to exceed $50 billion by 2012-13. Add mobile commerce to the mix (in Japan, M-Commerce grossed $6 billion in 2007, double mobile content sales) and transaction-oriented behavior will top $100 billion in this timeframe.
  • Revisiting Last Year's Predictions
    ust about a year ago, I wrote an article called "10 Media Trends to Watch in 2008." Given that hindsight is always 20-20, I'd like to discuss how well or poorly I did at foreseeing what actually transpired last year.
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