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To coincide with the release of Econsultancy’s Paid Search Agencies Buyer’s Guide this week, I’ve been talking to some leading UK search agency experts about what 2011 holds for the sector.
I’ve no doubt that paid search is going to become sexy again – we’ve seen PPC products and technologies emerging such as Google’s location-based ads, Product Listings, Extensions and Sitelinks.
Additionally, Bing and Yahoo! continue to challenge Google, while new opportunities for paid search are becoming apparent, ranging from mobile through to social media.
It looks to be an exciting year ahead for what some marketers regard as a stale channel, despite its effectiveness and accountability. But what do those on the frontline think?
Iʼm reminded of a definition of e-commerce I read years ago when I first considered getting into the business. It goes like this:
"The concept of e-commerce is all about using the internet to do business better and faster. It is about giving customers controlled access to your computer systems and letting people serve themselves. It is about committing your company to a serious online effort and integrating your Web site with the heart of your business. If you do that, you will see results!"*
I remember thinking that the ʻserious online effortʼ sounded important, and quite simple.
For advertisers looking for the holy grail in mobile, the iPhone is one of the most attractive targets. And with iAd, Apple is aiming for nothing less than the perfect mobile ad.
But sometimes perfect is the enemy of good, and if rumors that have been circulating are to be believed, Apple's quest for the perfect mobile ad is driving advertisers crazy. It's also driving them away from the advertising solution that's supposed to help them.
I meet a surprising number of prospective clients who confess to having thoroughly disliked their previous SEO agency.
Many of them have simply run into the charlatans our sector unfortunately attracts, but I have encountered quite a few companies which have had decent optimisation work done on their behalf.
The whole world of digital marketing is maturing but it’s still hugely dynamic, particularly in the world of search marketing.
This makes it an exciting time to be involved in the sector but does mean more and more agencies and practitioners are being left behind, clinging to what used to work and sticking with habits even if they aren’t doing anyone any favours.
But how can you spot one of these search marketing laggards, who have fallen so far behind?
Google will make some important changes to their legal terms and agreements with agencies next year. It will force extra transparency and it is a good thing.
Let's speculate who they're going after...
Last week, I wrote about popular user-generated news site Reddit, which, despite being owned by Conde Nast, finds itself having money problems.
To solve them, at least temporarily, it asked for donations. And it got plenty of them -- approximately 6,000. Calling the fundraising campaign a "triumph," a member of Reddit's team also wrote, "It's given everyone involved with reddit a good kick in the pants right when we needed it."
Media buyers are increasingly moving more and more dollars to digital, but as far as percentages go, digital advertising still has a lot of upside potential. The companies that stand to realize that potential, of course, are advertising powerhouses like Google.
Google isn't idly standing by waiting for media buyers to shift budgets. Yesterday, the Wall Street Journal wrote that Google has struck a deal with giant agency holding company Omnicom that will see Omnicom spend hundreds of millions of dollars on display ads through Google's ad exchange over the next two years.
I've been asking iCrossing UK CEO Paul Doleman about the deal...
No longer is brand marketing likely to remain the prerogative of conventional brand marketing organisations.
Whilst these organisations have great strengths in creativity, planning and campaign delivery, they exhibit fewer strengths online where a host of brand association, experience and conversation takes place.
There are others who are better placed to engage and create influence by blog, Facebook, YouTube and Twitter already thrive online. And they are the digital agencies...
There was a big hoo-ha last week as eMarketer’s recent research concluded that portals remain effective ad platforms. This came as Yahoo! was all over the press for attributing their financial recovery to a revival in online advertising spend.
Display advertising on Yahoo! has grown by 20% this quarter and the four big portals – Google, Yahoo!, Microsoft and AOL – all took in a total of $191,707 million in the US in advertising revenue between 2008 and 2011.
Google announced yesterday that it is "retiring" its Google Advertising Professionals program and that a new one, the Google AdWords Certification program, will be taking its place.
The good news: the previous $1,000 minimum 90-day ad spend required has been eliminated for individuals who would like to participate, and the minimum 90-day ad spend for agencies has been reduced to $10,000 from $100,000. That means that more individuals and agencies will have the opportunity to participate.