Marketing News Roundup, January 9

Oh boy—it’s Friday! In case you haven’t noticed, you know, now that the day is over…

Google Talks Chrome 2.0 and the Delay for Mac/Linux Compatibility

Google ChromeGoogle is now inviting users to give Chrome 2.0 Pre-Beta a test run. In an effort to confuse many users, Chrome will be going from a 0.2 version release straight to 2.0.

The Chromium Developer Documentation site has a listing of all of the new features in 2.0. Here are a few of the more exciting features (in order of how exciting I find them):

Support for user scripts/Greasemonkey scripts

Could this be the beginning of a transition to plugins in Chrome? This is exactly what I’ve been waiting for. Chrome has always been second fiddle for my browsing needs because of its lack of add-on features. See the developer documentation for details.

Browser profiles

Yahoo Continues Search for Head Coach

What type of CEO do you think Yahoo needs? Calm and steady, or someone with more flair and willing to take risks?

According to the WSJ, Yahoo could be close to choosing a CEO that’s a safe bet, rather than a gamble.

Among candidates still under consideration is Carol Bartz, the former chief executive officer of Autodesk Inc., a publicly traded company that builds design software used in engineering. She’s “on the list,” said a person familiar with the matter…[and] would indicate that Yahoo is looking for a steady hand who has run a public company over someone with Internet and online advertising experience.

As the search continues, I can’t help compare it to the annual football coaching shuffle, which happens this time of year. Will the AD/manager pick someone on the rise? Someone with proven experience? Or, pick the offense coordinator in-situ–which rarely gets anyone excited.

Ask.com Expands Semantic Search Technology

By Peter Young

Given the recent improvements announced by Google it should come as no surprise that another search engine has recently announced a raft of improvements to their search experience. This time it’s Ask.com who have announced a number of advances to their semantic search technology.

With semantic search one of the key search battlegrounds over the next couple of years, Ask introduced a couple of new semantic technologies namely DADS(SM) (Direct Answers from Databases), DAFS(SM) (Direct Answers from Search), and AnswerFarm(SM) aimed at breaking new ground in the areas of semantic, web text and answer farm search back in October 2008.

According to Erik Collier, vice president of product management at Ask, the Ask technology is unique because it enables web surfers to type real questions, instead of a series of keywords. When interviewed by TechNewsWorld back in June 2008, he went on to say

Find Businesses Faster with Google Maps for Mobile

bbscreenBy: Carrie Hill

Google Maps for Mobile just made it easier than ever to get directions to that business you’re headed for on the fly.

With the server side change, you can get directions to your business destination by entering the name into the start OR end point.  Until the change today – Google Maps for Mobile would look for an address with the word “Starbucks” in it – instead of looking for the business named Starbucks.

I use my phone a lot when I travel to find restaurants – subway stations – coffee shops – things I need but wouldn’t feel comfortable wandering around searching the city for.  I also love to have directions when I give a cabbie an address so I can at least know we’re going in the right general direction.  I’m a mountain girl – I’m directionally challenged without the mountains to the east and the plains to the west.

Google SEC Filing Fuels Speculation

As internet marketers we tend to concentrate on Google and its product set. Makes perfect sense considering Google is google-logothe undisputed King of the Online World.

What’s interesting to see is what Google does as a business. The Yahoo! news site ran an Associated Press story that says the AP ‘obtained’ a copy of the regulatory filing that Google filed December 15, 2008 and it revealed some interesting things about the company and what is going on there.

First, it’s  interesting that it was filed in paper form only. This practice avoids the online aggregators of these public records from being able to post the filing through their normal channels. I suspect these folks will have it sooner than later but the intentionality of Google providing the filing this way is curious. Trying to fly under the radar? Who knows.

Paid Search Ends 2008 On a Positive Note – Up 12%

By Rene LeMerle

For the best part of 2008, we heard the common tale of marketing budgets being shifted online, as companies sought affordable and measurable results. It seems the retail sector was no exception.

A report out by search management firm SearchIgnite suggests retail paid search grew 12% in Q4 2008, compared to 2007’s fourth quarter results. The growth trend was consistent across all the top three search engines (Google, Yahoo! and MSN).

Of the three months in Q4, Nov 2008 was the stand out, experiencing a phenomenal increase of 43%, which suggests retailers we going on the offensive to leverage Black Friday/Cyber Monday activity. Roger Barnette, president of SearchIgnite said: