Over the last week, I’ve noticed my ad spend in yahoo going up. I just recalled Yahoo sending me an email about their “improved” content match so I logged into the account to take a closer look and sure enough, the increased ad spend was coming from this “improved” content match. Problem is, the return on the ad spend was no where near what it had been before the “improvement” was made. Try to solve your problems by sticking it to your advertisers Yahoo? Yeah, that’s going to go real far. I can’t wait to hear the outcry. Somebody really needs to go in there and turnaround that fast-sinking ship.
Archive for the 'Marketing' Category
Today’s keynote speaker was George Kliavkoff, Chief Digital Officer at NBC. His presentation was actually an interview done by a senior writer at Fortune Magazine, Adam Lashinsky. The best part was probably Adam’s questioning — he really grilled the NBC exec on everything from hulu.com to his relationship with Steve Jobs. I didn’t realize that hulu had finally launched the full version of the site until I visited it today; it’s been up now for a couple of months supposedly. It actually looks really nice — quite applesque. I’m interested to see how well it does compared to distribution on itunes and how big it will be compared to Youtube (though they aren’t really competing for content; instead they will be competing for eyeballs).
The best part of the today’s sessions was definitely the “You don’t know jack!” session. ad tech invited about 6 or 7 teens (dubbed millenials or the millenial generation) from the bay area and asked them what devices or services that can’t live without, what they they thought of sms advertisements, freerice.com, virality, etc. The kids were pretty sharp so they were likely a bit ahead of the curve when compared to their contemporaries but it definitely gives you an idea of what direction they are heading.
One thing that I’ve really appreciated at ad tech is not only the quality of the speakers but the quality of the moderators and interviewers. They’ve seemed to have hired a bunch of senior journalists from big newspapers and the quality of their questions and statements is noticed. Even if the content in tomorrow’s session is weak, the conference has already paid for itself several times over. I would definitely recommend it to anyone in the marketing industry.
So the sun has set on the first day of ad tech and I promised a report on the day so here goes…
Jeff Hayslett, CMO of Kodak, was the keynote and did a great job though it was the first time I’ve heard someone drop the f-bomb in a presentation! One of the more interesting points of his presentation that I wasn’t aware of was that Kodak actually invented the digital camera but decided not to release because they were making so much money selling film. Obviously a big mistake. I actually caught up with him after spoke and he seemed like he’d be a cool guy to work with.
One of the sessions covered the future of marketing… it was interesting. The speakers covered everything from digital coupons text to you cell phone, to digital ads on GPS systems to LCD displays interactively showing off the features of products on display. The presentation that got the most ooo’s was Total Immersion’s 3D digital imaging. It worked by holding up the packaging of the product to a camera and then viewing a 3D image of the product on an LCD screen. Though it looked very cool, it doesn’t seem very useful or even that effective in presenting the product.
In an afternoon session, the topic of the future of search was covered. Representatives from Google, Microsoft, a couple of big advertisers and an online marketing agency made up the panel. The Google rep was the Directory of Advertising for the Western Region of the US and that was about as interesting as her presentation got. Surprisingly, the rep from MSN was actually pretty interesting and talked about some interesting stuff they will short be coming out with, including real time, real data on keyword searches. It sounded like something similar to the overture keyword tool which I dearly miss (since its no longer been updated, I’ve been relying on SEO Book’s keyword tool which is ok but I don’t always trust).
Unfortunately, the afternoon sessions
were pretty boring so I spent most of my time catching up on my google reader feeds were pretty lean on material. I also had to leave early a couple of sessions to do a couple of conference calls so I didn’t catch everything.
Tomorrow and Thursday will be covering a lot more material (more tracks) so I anticipate coming back to the hotel with a lot more education, information and ideas.
Just arrived in SF to attend the ad tech conference. I’m planning on writing a daily post for the 3-day event so stay tuned. This will be my first time attending ad tech so I’m anxious to see how good it is.
Update: Danny Sullivan also disputes Scoble’s predictions. Thanks Danny.
If you happen to see Robert Scoble’s video on the death of Google, consider yourself fortunate. I somehow got through 1 and half of the 3 part presentation and I just couldn’t listen to it any longer.
I don’t like to bash on anyone and it’s not really worth my time to do so. However, sometimes people just need to know when someone is giving them bogus information, especially if its coming from someone who is considered an “authority” on the topic.
Well, fortunately for you, Rand Fishkin at SEOmoz wrote an incredibly long post about how Scoble has it all wrong and just isn’t making sense.
By the way, if you’re reading this Scoble, if you’re going to use a whiteboard, it might be a good idea to make it so viewers can read what you are writing. One more word of advice (not necessarily relating to this video): I have a hard time respecting your opinion when you keep talking about yourself when you do presentations.
So YSM called me a couple of weeks ago and offered to suggest new keywords and ads for a client’s YSM account. I’m all for expanding keywords or doing whatever to increase search engine traffic to client’s sites (as long as it has a positive ROI, of course) so I didn’t have a problem with trying it out. The rep assured me that I could view the keywords and ads before they went live so there was nothing to worry about. I was all for them doing free work for me.
So last Friday I got a call and the rep asked me if I had looked at the keywords and ads and if I approved of them. They weren’t showing up in the account so the rep told me she would look into it and call me back. OK, no big deal.
Later that night I noticed that YSM charged the credit card on file to replenish the balance. Again, no big deal… or so I thought. Saturday morning at 2:12 AM I get another email from YSM saying they’ve charged the credit card again, just hours after the previous notification. I had noticed previously that sales weren’t up so I logged into our YSM account and sure enough, those keywords that I was supposed to approve of were live and had generated over a thousand clicks costing nearly a thousand dollars resulting in one conversion. Not cool Yahoo. “Broad” isn’t even the word I would use to describe the type of keywords they were bidding on… more like “irrelevant” and “high-volume.” Needless to say, I immediately paused the campaign.
So today I got a call from the same rep asking if I had a chance to look over the keywords. I related to her what happened and she wasn’t completely understanding. She started to confirm what it was that I had “requested” and she said she was going to look into it. Excuse me? What I requested? You called me and offered me this deal to me!
Stay tuned for an update. If a refund isn’t issued, they better be prepared for the consequences.
Just two days after I was venting my frustration with the Overture keyword selector, SearchEngineWatch posted about Wordtracker’s new free keyword suggestion tool. Though the tool provides hard numbers on keyword search volume, the calculation is somewhat crude (I don’t think the searches done on dogpile and metacrawler are a very good representation of searches done on more popular search engines).
That being said, I think this was a smart move by Wordtracker. Thousands like me used overture’s (Yahoo’s) tool and miss it. Wordtracker’s tool will now be the go-to tool for keyword volume and many of those users will signup for a paying account.
If you’re new to renting links, text-link-ads has a comprehensive white paper on the subject. If you’re not new to renting links but you haven’t read the paper, it has some good link building tips.
Though TLA will tell you anything to get you to buy their product, the paper is, for the most part, right on. It actually mentions other methods of building inbound links. One thing that is inaccurate in the paper, however, is how long you should wait to see results. The paper says you should wait at least 90 days… that may be the case for Yahoo or MSN, but for Google, it’s a good six months or longer for competitive terms.
I can’t ever seem to get the overture keyword selector tool to work (though it will once in a while) and its driving me crazy. Its the only tool I’ve come across that actually gives hard numbers on searches for specific keywords. I never had trouble with the tool when logged into a ysm account but when they upgraded the UI, they got rid of it :(. I actually got it to work tonight for one query but that was it.
If anyone knows of a keyword volume tool comparable to overture’s, please share.