An interesting “refresh” over at Technorati (I’ve been an advisor in the past) points to where the company is heading: as a social search service that uses blogger’s signals to surface popular and interesting media objects. The clear next step is to package these insights into media products…..congrats, T’rati folk!
The IAB has released its annual PricewaterhouseCooper/IAB online spending report. This report, as I recall, is quite conservative, but it still shows very healthy growth. (Caveat: I am on the IAB Board).
The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) and PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (PwC) today released the Internet Advertising Revenue Report which shows record results for the full year and final quarter of 2006. Internet advertising revenues in the U.S. continued upward totaling $16.9 billion in 2006, a new annual record exceeding 2005 by 35%. Q4 2006 internet advertising revenues totaled $4.8 billion, representing record revenues for a single quarter and a 35% increase over same period in 2005.
I like the trends in terms of the top ten largest sites’ share of revenues, which were down year over year (from 72 to 69%).
From an email sent by Google PR to me today:
Today website content is much more than just text – it’s also video. As the importance of online video increases, we think it’s important to deliver users relevant video ads, give advertisers a new way to reach customers online and help publishers earn additional revenue from their video content. Starting today we will begin an in-stream video ads test with a small group of US publishers and advertisers to help us learn the easiest and most scalable way to deliver ads to online video content.
Publishers will now be able to insert high quality, relevant in-stream ads that enhance their video content while maintaining a positive user experience. It also provides broader distribution for participating publishers, and an effective way for advertisers to reach their target customers with rich, engaging messaging. This test represents our continued efforts to address the challenges faced by publishers who want to monetize their video content, by advertisers who want access to quality video inventory, and finally by users who want ads to enhance their video watching experience, not detract from it.
The test will run on participating sites throughout the network.
As with current AdSense publishers, revenue will be split between the website publisher and Google. The exact revenue share is not being disclosed.
The advertisements will play on the publishers’ Flash players, not on YouTube or Google Video hosted videos.
Publishers can select which videos to monetize and track their performance using AdSense. They can also choose where the ads will appear within the videos.
Ad creatives, which can be no longer than 30 seconds, can be made skippable for users.
Google has invested nearly $4mm in 23andMe, Inc., “an early stage biotech company focused on helping consumers understand and browse their genome”.
The company is co-founded by Sergey’s new wife. Details in this SEC filing, thanks to Gary, himself newly married. From the site:
Even though your body contains trillions of copies of your genome, you’ve likely never read any of it. Our goal is to connect you to the 23 paired volumes of your own genetic blueprint (plus your mitochondrial DNA), bringing you personal insight into ancestry, genealogy, and inherited traits. By connecting you to others, we can also help put your genome into the larger context of human commonality and diversity.
Toward this goal, we are building on recent advances in DNA analysis technologies to enable broad, secure, and private access to trustworthy and accurate individual genetic information. Combined with educational and scientific resources with which to interpret and understand it, your genome will soon become personal in a whole new way.
You think this search stuff ain’t getting cosmic? Uh huh.
If you know my book, you know I started this whole endeavor with a random link in late 2001 or early 2002 to Google’s first ever Zeitgeist. Well, since then they launched Trends, and now they’ve updated it with Hot Trends.
From an email Google sent me (the site is not responding at 10 pm…):
On Monday night, Google launched Hot Trends, a new feature on the Google Trends report. Hot Trends enables users to see a list of the current top 100 fastest-rising Google search queries in the U.S. Users can also select specific dates to see what the top-rising searches were at a given point in time.
For years, Google has produced a manually-compiled list of popular searches called the Google Zeitgeist. Hot Trends takes this list to a new level, providing an up-to-date snapshot of what’s on our collective mind – from current events to daily crossword puzzle clues to the latest celebrity gossip. For each Hot Trends result, the associated Google News, blog searches and Google web search results appear, giving users greater context for each result. For example, the #2 Hot Trends result on Tuesday, May 15th was a cryptic phrase: “I who have nothing.” The associated news articles and blog results showed that this is in fact the title of a song that was performed on American Idol that night. And the associated web search results reveals this was originally a song made popular by Shirley Bassey. Mystery solved.
In addition to Hot Trends, there are a few other new changes to Google Trends to make it more informative and user-friendly. Now, in addition to viewing the top countries and cities that searched for a term, users can view the top “sub regions” (i.e. states within the U.S.) across more than 70 countries. Users can now compare the leading presidential candidates around the country, for instance, or find out what region in France is crazy about cognac. Hot Trends is Google’s newest tool for users who want to keep their finger on the pulse of what the world is searching for.
I’m sure it’ll be up soon here.
It’s all over the search engine web: Google is cleaning house of Adsense arbitrage sites, which I wrote about in The Search and form a cottage industry that benefits both parties. SEW has more here. I asked Google for a statement on this and got this rather tepid, but telling response:
At Google, we are always focused on how we can make the user experience as positive as possible while still providing value to our publishers and advertisers. As part of this effort, we continually conduct automated and manual reviews of publishers and sites that violate our policies. In some cases, violations of our program policies will result in termination from AdSense.
My site was jammed by spammers most of today, I barely got two posts out. But it’s back, and we’ll be back to normal soon. I did have a very interesting talk today with Yusef Mehdi, who ran the aQuantive deal for Microsoft, and Brian McAndrews, the CEO of aQuantive. What struck me most was the commitment to have a solution that counters AdSense, but with a richer suite of services for both publishers and advertisers. Microsoft is really committed to this business, but they have work to do to productize and integrate this acquisition. More soon.
I’ve started to interview interesting online marketing folks over at the FM blog. The first is Casey Jones, the new VP of Marketing at Dell. Check it out!
And if you have an appetite for marketing, you might check out the cool stuff going on with FM partners, including avery cool deal with Ask A Ninja, Boing Boing naming a plane, and Intel sponsoring Digg Labs.
OK. I gotta think about this one. Give me some time…