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One Question, More Than 100 Answers and Counting…

By - October 06, 2008

It never fails to surprise me, though it shouldn’t, how a simple question can elicit amazing responses. Late last week, on the advice of folks at Linked In and as a way to help guide my work as program chair of the CM Summit, I asked this simple question:

What’s the smartest marketing you’ve ever seen online?

I didn’t know what to expect, I’ve seen these questions stream into my inbox from my Linked In connections, and honestly unless it hit a nerve with me, I didn’t really respond to them.

But clearly, this one hit a nerve. Not yet halfway through the seven days that questions are allowed to stay up, this one has 109 responses and counting. And the answers are really thoughtful, they range from Microsoft’s MVP program to Mini’s work, from subservient chicken to the US Army.

I’ve decided to take this list, which at the current rate will have 200 or more responses by the time the question closes, and chose ten finalists, then let folks vote on their favorites. Then we can announce the winner(s) at the CM Summit next week. It might be the start of something, who knows?


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4 thoughts on “One Question, More Than 100 Answers and Counting…

  1. AD PR NY says:

    The Web 2.0 idea certainly stands as one of the most catchy – once it caught on…..

    The concept seems to have caught on to other areas of Web technology.

    It is not always when an idea is thought of first – it is WHO can publicize it into the conciousness.

    Look at how the phrase AJAX has taken off – it was originally considered XML over HTTP

  2. nmw says:

    One gimmick that seems to be the longest lasting is the “don’t be evil” Spiel. The implication is, of course, that Google is good (which is at least debatable).

    But in the sense of “selling” something (i.e., getting cold hard cash for it) the hands-down undeniable winner is Bill Gross’s “pay per click” model.

    Combining these two, Google appears to be somewhat of a “saintly” cash machine. This is, however, completely bogus (since they publicly admit to their own widespread practice of censorship and there is quite strong evidence of extortion, too).

    Still, a lot of people believe in things that are completely bogus (e.g. Steve Rubel — as I indicated in my last comment — apparently believes that PageRank is the undeniable true yardstick of “influence”).

    Like, OMG! Gag me with a spoon — TOTALLY….

  3. WebUrs says:

    I love this question but wonder at the same time, how does this affect my bottom line. Google PageRank may indicate that you have influence or a good video on YouTube may result in thousands of downloads but:

    - how does this affect the bottom line – will this bring in more customers, auditing clients and so forth?

    Same with the corporate blog or your advertising / marketing campaign. Unless it rings the cash register why have a corporate blog http://commetrics.com/?p=114

    Nevertheless, I love reading the suggestions on LinkedIn …. funny stuff and great ideas for sure. Thanks for this post.

  4. gabe mott says:

    This is great. I love it.

    And, how about this for the next top 100 list:

    The Greatest Marketing Online that you Never Heard Of

    How come we never heard of it if it was so great? I’m talking about really really niche marketing–

    Yesterday I clicked on a facebook ad for an artist’s portfolio– he offered an online opening to his show. The whole thing was brilliant. It wouldn’t necessarily be a huge market– not everyone wants to buy fine art online– but as an artist it represents a great model for advertising fine art.

    I’d like to see a list that includes really simple (not so wow cool) marketing techniques that were original at their time and were succesful.

    Ok, maybe the list is:
    “Best online marketing implementations of simple techniques.”
    or
    “Most Novel Online Marketing Techniques…”

    I guess my point is to create great examples that can help teach us as online marketers. Sorry if my idea is boring, yours is much more fun.