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February 13, 2008

The effects of the Microsoft's, Yahoo acquisition on an Overworked Search Marketer

microsoft yahoo

With Yahoo's rejection of Microsoft's hostile bid now behind us now (at least we hope it is), I sit down and reflect on how my life as an internet marketing consultant would have changed if it did take place.

So how would the merger have changed the life of a real life search marketer? Here are 3 ways it would.... 

1. More tee time...


If the merger did take place, there would have been a significant reduction of campaign management time because the Ad Center & Yahoo Marketing (Panama) campaign management dashboards would have been integrated into a single system. This would have had a remarkable impact on reducing campaign roll-out times. At the moment although most of our effort as search marketers is concentrated on Google Adwords (which accounts for about 85% of search traffic), there is still a combination of about 15% traffic split between Adcenter and Yahoo Marketing managed on two different panels! A combined Adcenter & Panama panel would have saved me a load of work time and given me more time to perfect my swing :)

2. Make search marketers a little wealthier...


With the keyword bid prices on a never ending upward spiral, a bit of industry consolidation would have made search marketing a little more competitive with a drop in keyword prices. Over the last 3 years, although PPC results have become more relevant and well executed PPC campaigns have driven more relevant traffic, the introduction of features from Google like Quality Scoring & 'secret' minimum CPCs, have shot up prices. An MS/Yahoo merger would have created more competition and driven costs down  in the search marketing sector, asthe two giants battled for market dominance. This of would have freed up some cash I would have otherwise used in search campaigns for yatch trips, champagne & strawberries..... 

3. The Coke and Pepsi Effect

Coke vs Pepsi

I'm a Google buff, I must admit; but what harm would a little bit of competition in the search engine markeplace have done? I come again to the effects of only having two control panels on the time schedule of an already overworked search SEO expert who predominantly optimises for Google.
In a Coke/Pepsi scenario, SEO experts would have clearly laid out rules to optimise specifically for two search platforms. Not a bad cover over 95% of the search marketplace.

December 13, 2006

Google Advertising Professional Exam…sorted

Google Advertising Professional Logo

I took the Google Advertising Exam on Monday the 11th of December and passed in flying colours with a score of 87.1%.
I had 2 reasons for taking the exam; first off…I started studying for it when I was commuting between London & Oxford in February and then when I moved into Oxford in March, I stopped studying. It was one of my targets for 2006 and so I had to get it sorted before the end of the year. The other reason was that I was really in the exam taking mood since I had just taken the UK DVLA theory driving test.

Google Ad Professional Exam Results

Surprisingly, studying was the real fun part of the entire process because I learnt about an awful lot of features I had overlooked over the last 18 months I have been managing Adword accounts. Even if you are not interested in taking the exams, I will list a couple of recommended articles I will be revisiting and will always be a good read for you:

Site Targeting
Basic ROI and Conversion Tracking
Advanced Conversion Tracking
Cross-Channel Conversion Tracking
Google Analytics
Increasing a Low CTR
Selling the Benefits of Adwords
The Basic Google Sales Pitch
Addressing Common Client Questions and Concerns

Over my course of studying (which took me about 30 hours over a period of about a month), I created Ad Word campaigns with about 50,000 keywords so far and have developed unique keyword research techniques. I have also done a lot of experimenting with the ROI and conversion tracking features which surprisingly work well. As a tip guys, use the AdWords editor – its heaven sent and differentiates Google from Yahoo Marketing & MS AdCentre. I started playing around with the AdWords Editor about 2 months before my study.

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