• When Google Listens
    There's a special joy when you realize someone with way more power than you'll ever have is actually listening to what you have to say. So it was last week when Google released a number of tweaks to its search algorithms designed to improve the quality of search results by demoting, radically in some cases, the ranks of sites that are almost universally considered content farms. While I wouldn't be so bold as to think Google was listening to me specifically, it's clear that the chorus of complaint about increasingly polluted search results has been heard loudly and clearly in …
  • Ya!Bing: Your Brand Keywords Are Going To Cost More, But Don't Blame Us -- Blame Google
    Don't be surprised on March 4 when your Search Alliance (Microsoft Bing and Yahoo Search) campaigns are suddenly less profitable. Recently, the Alliance announced that, effective March 3, they "will no longer investigate complaints about trademarks used as keywords" for U.S. and Canadian accounts. In effect, this allows any advertiser to bid on any trademark term regardless of their relationship to the trademark owner. Microsoft is not altering the current policy for trademarks in ad copy, so only trademark owners/resellers are allowed to utilize trademark terms in ad copy, except in certain circumstances.
  • The Paradox of Social Media: The More Social it Gets, The Less Social We Become
    I have teenage daughters. At least, I assume they're still my daughters. They hang around our house and eat our food. But, to be honest, it's been a while since we identified ourselves to each other. Between Angry Birds, SMS and Facebook, there's precious little actual conversing going on in the Hotchkiss household. I barely recognize their faces, lit up as they are by the cool blue digital light of an iPhone screen. I assume that, at times, there's a living being at the other end of their multi-texting, but I'm not really sure.
  • The Ultimate SEO PPC Rap Battle
    I'm sure by now many of you have seen the killer Page Rank rap laid down by Charles "Chuck" Lewis, aka the SEO Rapper. Now, we've all seen SEO and PPC battle it out in many a conference room and trade show. But I think the time has come to take the battle to the streets. Or, rather, back to the trade shows -- but keeping it street! That's why I'm challenging the SEO Rapper to do battle with my new alter ego, the PPC MC.
  • APIs Every Search Marketer Should Consider: PPC Version
    Last week I covered several APIs that search marketers should consider to help make SEO more efficient. This week I'll share the APIs that you should consider checking out on the PPC side. Like the SEO version, these APIs can make managing PPC much more ef
  • The New Paid Search Ads On The Block
    In previous posts, I have highlighted ad extensions and enhancements Google has introduced to the search engine results pages that continue to give paid results more prominence. Today, I would like to address a few more of these changes, along with the topic of how ad copywriting best practices are evolving.
  • How Smart Do We Want Search To Get?
    Imagine if a search engine was smart enough to be able to anticipate your needs before you know you need them. There it sits, silently monitoring your every move and just when you get a hankering for Thai food (burbling up to the threshold of consciousness), there it is with the hottest Thai restaurants within a 2-mile radius. You didn't have to do a thing. It was just that smart! Sound utopian? Then take a moment to think again. Do we really want search to become that smart? Sure, it sounds great in theory, but what would we have to …
  • The Reinvention of B2B Search
    We've just lived through the season of predictions in our industry, when every observer and practitioner forecast what they believed will become the year's key storylines and trends. Will this be the year that Facebook PPC becomes a prominent advertising outlet? Will Google get serious about its keyword-less auction experiment? And as those questions are being pondered, the reality is that the answers are inconsequential. The debate is healthy; search is alive and well. So as I contemplated what I wanted to accomplish professionally this year, I resolved not to chase trends or seek answers to questions like the ones …
  • APIs Every Search Marketer Should Consider: SEO Version
    Search marketers are a unique bunch -- we're often a little bit marketer and a little bit techie. Today's post is designed to reach out to the techie in all of you -- the techie that longs for greater SEO efficiency through APIs.
  • Black And White Hats In The Mainstream Spotlight
    >Search engine optimization is not something that comes up in light conversation at cocktail parties. In fact, people who work in the business often go out of their way to avoid talking too much about it. Which is why seeing the subject of SEO so prevalent in the mainstream media these last eight weeks or so has been so disorienting. For the first time in my career, knowing a lot about the relatively obscure world of organic search results and how they're arrived at has been something of an asset socially.
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