Posts Tagged ‘Google’

Twitter: To buy or not to buy

April 3, 2009

A lot of buzz his morning about Google and Twitter. Will Google buy Twitter or won’t they? At the end of the day, Twitter will need to monetize it’s amazing growth or sell out and let someone else figure it out. Depending on what side of the fence you are on, you could argue which way makes the most sense.

Google buys Twitter:

Google knows what industry they are in. They have stopped trying to become the behemoth media company and focusing back on search. After all, it’s what they know. I didn’t Google was smart to try and get into print, TV and radio and now looks like they realized it. Google bought YouTube not because it was a better product than Google video, or more popular, but the search volume. YouTube now ranks #2 behind Google itself for search volume. Guess who is increasing search volume??? Yep, Twitter. The problem with the concept of Twitter as a search driver to monetize through ads is that over 50% of Twitter traffic is not through the site. Thanks Tweetdeck and TwitterFon!

Google to pass on Twitter:

The last point about Twitter search volume and how it’s not happening on Twitter. More and more applications are using the Twitter API to access the data and people no longer need to go to Twitter. Think destination free web. Google knows how to make money on search volume. It took them longer than I expected on YouTube, but video is a different beast dealing with context. Also, Twitter has become the search engine for NOW. If I want to know what is happening now, Twitter breaks the news the fastest. Just depends on who you follow to get it sent to you, or if you have to search for it. How many advertisers can predict what will happen and capitalize on what will happen in the future? Not many.

The risk for Google not to buy Twitter is that it will continue it’s phenomenal growth, and be a much more expensive acquisition in the future. Buy it while it’s “cheap”?

My two cents: I don’t want to see ads plastered down the side of Twitter search. If third party sites monetize through Google, that’s fine. Don’t mess with Twitter, even though less than 50% use it to access Twitter anyways.

So will we see a “Twoogle”?

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Google serving ads based on behavior

March 11, 2009

Google announced that they will begin serving ads based on users surfing behavior today. Finally, the deal with DoubleClick is driving something from Google that will place them in the ad serving space besides AdManager for publishers. Google considers their search ads through AdWords untouchable, and is using the AdSense program for their beta programs.  They also recently announced a beta program for expandable ads through AdSense.

Is this a sign that Google wants to make a bigger play against Yahoo! and their display advertising capabilities which is really their last strong leg? If Google can capture the display market that Yahoo! has built up, I can’t see Yahoo! surving very long and then Google gets the bost of both tactics, which equals $$$. It also will likely raise monopoly concrens.

If this works and survives the privacy complaints, it might be a huge success for bettering search results. If Google can tell what I am interested in generally, they will be able to take that data and add it to algorithms for search results as well as PPC ads.  Overall, this would lead to a better search experience which Google knows is the path to riches.

Status of search for 2009

December 23, 2008

A recent number from ComScore might be alarming to some in the search world not associated with Google. YouTube received more search queries in November than Yahoo! and Microsoft properties. Google owned 63.5% of the search queries in November while Yahoo! only had 20.4% of the volume. The fact that YouTube is getting more search volume than the second and third place search engine shows that YouTube might have finally grown up and cracked into the big time.

It’s no coincidence that YouTube now allows search ads on the pages as well since there is more traffic there than the other two major engines. It’s also no coincidence that YouTube is not just skateboarders and stupid human tricks. They have learned a lot in their short tenure and are learning to monetize their huge traffic base. Search is no longer just for the engines. Search has expanded into video, auctions, shopping, and so many other functions since people are accustomed to search absed results. It’s the beauty of the internet. 

YouTube receiving more queries than Yahoo! and Microsoft is big swing heading into 2009 and the “consolidation talks of ’08’ are behind us (at least for now). Will anyone be able to make a viable run at Google or will they continue their dominance in the search space. It is my guess that if someone can make a run at Google and their dominant market share, it will come from a small player not on the big map today. Remember, Google started small too and just made it easier for the consumer. If someone else can take a similar concept and improve the process, people will switch. It likely won’t be in 2009, but it could happen.

Anyways, it’s been an interesting year in 2008 with all the swirling talks of Microhoo and Googoo mergers and in the end nothing. So enjoy the holidays and look forward to 2009.

Mail Goggles from Google rule

October 9, 2008

As most of the media coverage is about the debates, politics and how the economy is going down the drain, Google introduced something rather fun. Their new feature for Gmail is called “Mail Goggles” which allows you to set time periods where you must answer math problems before the message will be sent. No more late night love notes to the ex and scathing emails about relatives. If you can’t pass the test, can’t send the message.

It wil be interesting to see how Google tracks this and if there is a decrease in late night email volume. Only if this were available on a cell phone. Drunk dialing/texting is much more dangerous than having to sit and type an email. Oh well, something fun in the news for once.

Google looking for new ways to increase revenue

September 16, 2008

Google is making more changes to help grow their online advertising revenue. One recent change that has been made is to remove the “inactive for search” which will allow all ads to be open to the possibility of being served.  This will likely lead to more “qualified” ads being served on the long tail of search queries. After all, Google sees about 20-25% of their daily search queries for the first time everyday. 

Replacing the “inactive for search” will be an estimate for first page. This will likely increase the costs of keywords as advertisers can now see the benchmark that they need to hit to be served on the first page. This will most likely impact the competitive industries the most. Advertisers that are consistently just off the first page, can now see what terms convert best as well what the bidding range is for first page placement.

I think advertisers will like the new change being made and Google is hoping to see an increase in their revenue. Even if only generates a 1% increase, that results in $100 million increase.

Google and NBCU enter strategic partnership

September 9, 2008

Google announced that they are entering a strategic partnership with NBC Universal. This will give the search giant access to a large amount of inventory on different NBC cable channels. This is a large win for Google, as the TV ads program has struggled so far. Recently, they only had access to Dish Network. This new partnership will allow media planners to diversify their plans through Google’s AdWords platform.

The ultimate goal is to get more non-traditional advertisers to use Google’s platform they are familiar with to buy traditional media such as print and TV.  Google has a large pipeline of small advertisers that advertise locally online, but do not use TV due to several factors. Google’s program is trying to get them access to inventory by removing the middleman and making it more reasonably priced.

Google is starting to impede on large media agencies turf with their new platform and the partnership with NBCU will definitely stir the pot a little more as a large provider has entered a partnership. This is not the first idea of trying a new method of media buying however. eBay tried a media auction platform where Oxygen! participated, but the idea was ultimately scrapped.

The two will also collaborate on marketing and research projects.

The channels that will initially be offered are:

  • Sci-Fi
  • Oxygen
  • MSNBC
  • CNBC
  • Sleuth
  • Chiller

Google is coolest 10 year old in world

September 8, 2008

Google is now in double digits. Google had it’s 10th anniversary recently and what a journey they have been on. The term “Google” and  is now a verb, you can buy radio and TV through their AdWords platform, free web tools include Google Analytics and Site Optimizer. The list could go on and on which is awfully impressive for a 10 year old company. The big question is, where will it go?

There is talk that they will be more aggressive in the TV advertising space since it still holds the largest ad $$. Will it use the acquisition of DoubleClick and offer a free ad serving solution to capture more details and data about the display advertising space? The answer resides in Mountain View CA.

Google just launched their own web browser and so far so good. Most comments are positive and people are happy with Chrome. One set back that Google might face is Android, their mobile operating system. Several analysts are predicting that the launch of the platform will not have nearly the buzz or success of the iPhone. 

So as Google heads to the tweens and teens, it will be interesting to see where the web giant heads. Overall, it has been an impressive 10 years and I look forward to seeing what comes in the next decade from Mountain View.

Google launches Chrome

September 2, 2008

Google launched another weapon of mass destruction today, Chrome. Chrome is their new Internet browser which is there next step at taking more control of the Internet from Microsoft. Although I am not a huge fan of their logo, the browser is pretty nice. It seems to be faster than IE, less “cluttered” feeling and I like being able to type a search query in the address bar.

I think this a big win for the big G for the less sophisticated Internet browser. It makes it so easy to do things. Opening a new tab shows most visited pages, once again, big plus for the casual browser. They even have the “incognito” window which blocks cookies and addresses the privacy issue that IE8 is pushing.

Overall, it appears to be a good launch for Google and the next step towards online domination.

Yahoo! to phase out Match Driver

August 18, 2008

Some know this and others don’t, but Yahoo! is slowly phasing out their Match Driver program which was their answer to making search easier for marketers. However, there was one big hurdle they could not overcome and it was the big G. Google campaigns could not seamlessly plug into Yahoo! since Google allows misspellings and plural.single variations where as Yahoo! would see them as the same term and show one ad.

This was troublesome for several people that I know, as they would have a very string ROI on on permutation and Yahoo! would not allow them to have a separate word in Panama. Success might have been had on “digital cameras” for a site that had a stellar review platform and allowed customers to compare before purchasing, and the word “digital camera” did not see the same success as the user using the singular form was not in the same state of mind as those that used the plural. Google allows marketers to see this and capitalize, Yahoo! fails to allow the optimization process to occur.

This may also be part of the Google/Yahoo! deal where Google is looking to serve more and more ads on the Yahoo! platform since the Microsoft deal did not work out. At the end of the day, Yahoo! needs to go back to board and figure out what exactly they want to do, and getting out of the search space may be the best answer as all the hard work to launch Panama appears to be going down the tank.

Google offering view-through in AdSense

August 8, 2008

Google announced that they are going to set cookies on sites that offer AdSense ads so that advertisers can now see if the visitor goes to the site without clicking. This is Google’s first move in the “ad server” space and hopefully many more will come. The tool also allows advertisers to cap how many times the ad is viewed by a vistor.

I would like to see them offer this service for PPC ads as well to provide some more data about search as a branding tool. It would also be nice for them to open an ad server that is free, which isn’t too far out of the realm since it seems like Google is willing to give free tools away in return for data. What better way to get costs, CTR’s, dayparting, and geotargeting data from advertisers and publishers than offer a free ad server.

That may be the next step, knowing Google they are most likely way ahead of that.