Tech Review: New Form of Advertising

I am breaking my holiday silence as a few readers have reminded me that I forgot to post a link to a column I wrote up for Technology Review magazine. It's basically a rewrite of my Sell Side Advertising post, but to make the concept a bit more approachable…

Trcover

I am breaking my holiday silence as a few readers have reminded me that I forgot to post a link to a column I wrote up for Technology Review magazine. It’s basically a rewrite of my Sell Side Advertising post, but to make the concept a bit more approachable (or perhaps to ruin it) I changed the name to Publisher Driven Advertising. In any case, as always I owe a debt to Ross Mayfield and many others for the ideas contained within. And it’s my hope that in 2005 we can take this idea and see where it might run.

18 Comments on Tech Review: New Form of Advertising

A Look Ahead

Here we are again, the end of the year. Last year I did pretty well with my prognostications, mainly because I chose carefully. This time, I'm feeling a bit more reckless. A year from now, I am sure I'll be scratching my head – what was I thinking? -…

Crystal Ball

Here we are again, the end of the year. Last year I did pretty well with my prognostications, mainly because I chose carefully. This time, I’m feeling a bit more reckless. A year from now, I am sure I’ll be scratching my head – what was I thinking? – but then again, that’s not such a bad place to be.

So in no particular order, here are some things that I believe have a reasonable chance of occurring in 2005 with regard to the intersection of media, technology, and search.

1. We will have a goat rodeo of sorts in the blogging/micropublishing/RSS world as commercial interests push into what many consider a “pure medium.” I’ve seen this movie before, and it ends OK. But it’s important that the debate be full throated, and so far it looks to be shaping up that way. I’m already seeing these forces at work over at Boing Boing, and I am sure they will continue. We’ll all work on figuring out ways to stick to our principles and get paid at the same time, however, I expect that things might get more contentious before they get better, and 2005 may be a more fractious year in the blogosphere as we evolve through this process.

Read More
37 Comments on A Look Ahead

A Look Back

One year ago, I made a bunch of predictions. Today I call myself out and see how I did. Tomorrow (or maybe a little later in the week) I'll post some predictions for 2005. That will pretty much round out my posts for 2004 – during the holidays I'm…

Nostrad-TmOne year ago, I made a bunch of predictions. Today I call myself out and see how I did. Tomorrow (or maybe a little later in the week) I’ll post some predictions for 2005. That will pretty much round out my posts for 2004 – during the holidays I’m focusing on writing the book. But I couldn’t resist this little exercise first.

So…How did I do? Not bad, all told. Possibly because my predictions were facile, but still, we all have our own bars, don’t we? I managed to limbo under mine pretty well. So, to the specifics.

My first prediction: “The Web becomes a platform (again).” I think with the buzz around desktop search and the Google OS, the strong performance of the major platform players like Amazon, eBay, and Yahoo, the happy and well attended buzz around Web 2.0, this seems to be coming to fruition.

Read More
7 Comments on A Look Back

“We’ll figure out how to monetize it later”

That's a quote in today's USA Today from Lars Perkins, product manager for Picasa, Google's recently acquired photo software. It's a sentiment that rests deep in Google DNA – make the product first, figure out the business case later. It worked for the original Google service, and it's clearly…

That’s a quote in today’s USA Today from Lars Perkins, product manager for Picasa, Google’s recently acquired photo software. It’s a sentiment that rests deep in Google DNA – make the product first, figure out the business case later. It worked for the original Google service, and it’s clearly guiding Print, Orkut, Froogle, and News (though some of those of course are supported by advertising). I don’t have the answer to this question, but it’s worth raising – how long can this approach to the world stand? It’s certainly a wonderful luxury to have – make a useful product, then figure out if/how it might make money. it reminds me of my preferred approach to publishing – make great editorial, then figure out how to sell it later. The only difference – with editorial, there was always a model to fall back on – advertising and subscription. As I’ve pointed out before, I’m not so sure that advertising alone can foot the bill for all of Google’s innovations.

5 Comments on “We’ll figure out how to monetize it later”

Yahoo Releases Update to Index

Last year Google released a major update to its index right before Christmas, and all hell broke loose. This year Yahoo did the same, but the reaction has been more muted – even positive, in some cases. It's always hard to draw conclusions from index updates, but this one…

Last year Google released a major update to its index right before Christmas, and all hell broke loose. This year Yahoo did the same, but the reaction has been more muted – even positive, in some cases. It’s always hard to draw conclusions from index updates, but this one seems to be moving a lot of SEO links around the SERPs…

Update: According to SEORountable, an update is happening over at Google as well, though opinions are mixed as to whether it’s major, or simply ongoing maintenance…

Leave a comment on Yahoo Releases Update to Index

Pell, Geico, and Paid Search

Dave Pell recounts his excursion into buying AdWords based on the Geico keywords, and summarizes some new marketing realties: My experience does clearly point to the fact that we have opened up a whole new marketing frontier that will require ad buyers and small businesses to be a lot…

Dave Pell recounts his excursion into buying AdWords based on the Geico keywords, and summarizes some new marketing realties:

My experience does clearly point to the fact that we have opened up a whole new marketing frontier that will require ad buyers and small businesses to be a lot more creative with their marketing plans. It’s not as simple as coming up with the most obvious search terms. As the market grows, those will become prohibitively expensive for most buyers. Ad buyers will need to predict what their potential buyers might be interested in and then try to get in front of them as they’re on the way to finding it. If you want to get in front of a few thousand potential orthodontics patients, you might have to figure out something more creative than the words teeth and braces. And in many cases, your marketing plan may only last for a few days (or even a few hours) at which time you’ll need to add new search terms to the mix.

2 Comments on Pell, Geico, and Paid Search

Google Desktop Security: Welcome to the Software Biz

As I noted when GDS first came out, once you start providing serious PC-based software and integrate it with an internet service, you can become a target of hackers. The Times today writes about the security flaw initially discovered by Rice researchers. Google has already posted an updated version…

As I noted when GDS first came out, once you start providing serious PC-based software and integrate it with an internet service, you can become a target of hackers. The Times today writes about the security flaw initially discovered by Rice researchers. Google has already posted an updated version of GDS.

2 Comments on Google Desktop Security: Welcome to the Software Biz

Cindy – An Appreciation

Now that the news is out that Cindy McCaffrey is leaving Google, I can post an appreciation. I first met Cindy when I was a cub reporter for MacWeek in 1987. She handled PR for a portion of Apple, and it was my job to try to get anything…

Cindy

Now that the news is out that Cindy McCaffrey is leaving Google, I can post an appreciation. I first met Cindy when I was a cub reporter for MacWeek in 1987. She handled PR for a portion of Apple, and it was my job to try to get anything I could on the company, no matter what. It was Cindy who would call me, exasperated, when I acquired a pre-release version of Apple’s new Mac IIci and published a photo of its motherboard on the front page.

And it was Cindy who campaigned internally on my behalf when I came up with the idea, 15 years later, of writing a book that featured search as its subject and Google as a major narrative actor. With Cindy at the helm of communications and marketing, Google has enjoyed perhaps the most unprecedented run of good press in modern corporate history. (Cindy also sidestepped the marketing excesses of the bubble era, a decision that was not easy to take in 1999-2000). She’s been at Google since the middle of 1999, and certainly deserves the break she plans to take (I believe sailing for a few weeks with her husband is the first item on her agenda). She told me recently that she’s looking forward to reconnecting with family, friends, and “cooking her own dinners.” I wish her well, and expect it won’t be long before we hear from her again. She’s too good – and too restless – to retire forever.

3 Comments on Cindy – An Appreciation

Comment Spam and Search

Anyone with a blog has come across the bane of comment spam, recently it's gotten to near epidemic proportions for folks who use Moveable Type, as I do (I think this is because MT users tend to have high PageRank sites, but that's just a guess). Why do comment…

Anyone with a blog has come across the bane of comment spam, recently it’s gotten to near epidemic proportions for folks who use Moveable Type, as I do (I think this is because MT users tend to have high PageRank sites, but that’s just a guess).

Why do comment spammers do what they do? Simple: for the ranking juice. A spammer’s link inserted into the comment field confers this site’s authority, such that it is, to the spammer’s target site. Jeremy Zawodny, who is working with the Search team over at Yahoo, posts an interesting commentary on this problem, and suggests a solution.

If you assume the following:

Read More
6 Comments on Comment Spam and Search