Search Engine Marketing Blog

Cutting edge interactive advertising.

Search engine marketing (SEM) is a rapidly changing field rife with opportunities, but it takes expertise and experience to run optimal interactive advertising campaigns. When engaging in digital advertising, such as paid search, display media, social media advertising and remarketing, it's extremely important that your efforts are backed by knowledge and strategy. Here, our SEM experts provide the tips and information you can use to improve your campaigns, and your ROI. To stay up to date on our search engine marketing blog, subscribe to our feed.

March 29 2007

Pay Per Action and “The Age of Results”

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Google’s expanded testing of Pay Per Action (PPA; aka, Cost Per Action/Acquisition or CPA) ushers in the potential for a whole new era of customer-centric search engine marketing. In this new model advertisers only pay (and publishers only profit) when users follow through with a pre-determined action/conversion. This shift from paying by number of impressions or clicks could have huge ramifications for the ways that SEM campaigns are created and managed and the way companies design their sites and landing pages.

The importance of customer-satisfaction in SEM has hit an all-time high with Google’s continued roll out of the Quality Score — where ad and landing page relevance directly impacts minimum CPC (cost per click). As if the increased minimum cpcs for poorly constructed campaigns or results weren’t enough to send advertisers rushing to revamp their landing pages and make channels to conversion shorter, easier, and much more user-friendly, now PPA enters the scene.

PPA is being heralded not only as the possible click fraud killer, but also as a beacon of freedom that will re-energize SEM and allow advertisers to be more creative, more daring, more compelling, and ultimately deliver more value to their customers.

With PPA the SEM paradigm is shifting from sheer traffic to a focus on user experience and an “age of results”. Unlike in CPC where, since every click is costly, campaigns have to be tightly built and monitored to ensure advertising budgets are wisely spent, with PPA the advertising gained from impressions and clicks is “free” so companies have a lot more room to experiment with campaigns, landing pages, etc., without any risk or loss of investment. The potential for customer satisfaction grows exponentially with this new model as campaigns and landing pages will have to take into account the user’s needs in order to maximize their full potential and in order for marketers and publishers to profit from the campaigns. In short, with PPA everyone wins when the customer is satisfied with his/her online experience, so sites, campaigns, and product offerings must be user experience-centric rather than traffic-centric.

March 28 2007

Video Search and the Future Of Search Engine Marketing

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According to Online Media Daily, ClipBlast has a web video-search platform that makes video search a more efficient process. In addition, it provides a link directly to original content providers in order to avoid copyright lawsuits like those that YouTube are currently facing. Providing links back to the original content provider could also have a positive effect for advertisers because searchers who originate at the ClipBlast site could result in increased traffic back to the original content provider’s site.

QUESTIONS:
What role do you think video search is going to have on Search Engine Marketing in the near future? Do you think videos will become just as crucial to online marketing as other advertising mediums such as banner ads or e-mail blasts? Why or Why not? Let me know what you think by posting your comments.

To read the entire article, go to:

http://publications.mediapost.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=Articles.san&s=57799&Nid=28729&p=425127

March 27 2007

Assists Are Not Just a Basketball Statistic

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MoreVisibility Analytics Blog

I would like to talk abut something called an Assist. When I think of the word “assist”, I think of one man: John Stockton. For those of you that don’t know, Stockton is the NBA’s all-time leader in assists, with 15,806 of ‘em over his 19-year career.*

In basketball, an assist is when a player’s pass helps set-up a made shot.

Just the other day, one of my co-workers came up to me and asked me something like: “Hey Joe, I was in the YSM interface, and I saw the column “assists” in one of the reports. What the heck is an assist?”

Well, similar to basketball, an assist in Yahoo! is when a keyword or ad helps set-up a conversion from another keyword or ad.

Would you like a more technically-oriented definition of it? Here it is, from Yahoo! themselves:

“The number of times a keyword or ad contributed to a conversion that was credited to another keyword or marketing activity. Assists must occur within 45 days of the conversion event to be recorded. Within any 45 day period, a conversion event can have a maximum of 30 assists recorded.”

Here’s an example. Let’s say someone types in “brown shoes”, and then clicks on your Ad. The person even goes as far as adding a pair of Brown Shoes to their shopping cart. But then, just for argument’s sake, let’s say that they accidentally close their browser! So, they open it back up, but they forget what search term they used, and possibly what website they were just shopping at. They now type in “men’s dress shoes”, find the Ad for your website, pick up where they left off, and then purchase that same pair of Brown Shoes (that was most likely still in their shopping basket).

While the keyword “men’s dress shoes” will get credited with the conversion, “brown shoes” will get the credit for the assist.

I understand that this is an unlikely example, but it’s merely that, an example. Another possibility for an assist is when someone clicks on your ad, and then comes back later to buy / convert / fill out your form, without clicking on your ad again (I know, I know…I’m basically saying the same thing again). This happens quite frequently with websites that sell tickets, or have special sales on certain days or weeks.

Yes, the NBA Playoffs are fast approaching, but they are not the only ones dishing out assists

*Source — NBA.com.

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