Reddit User Hits Reputation Management Lottery

Faced with an unfavorable RipOffReport web page ranking number one for his name on Google, Reddit user Carl Herold turned to his fellow Redditors for help. On June 30th, Carl posted a message on self.AskReddit asking for advice on how to deal with a complaint from a former vendor he claims is a lie. The post received so much attention that Carl’s name was the 5th most popular search term on Google (for a time), resulting in hundreds of thousands of web pages being created mentioning Carl’s name and helping him push the unfavorable complaint to page 5 of the search results.

In Carl’s follow up post thanking Reddit he claims that:

Commission Junction Chosen Twice as Often as Other Affiliate Networks

California based Commission Junction (a division of Value Click), announced on June 15th 2010 that 63% of online retailers who use third party affiliate companies used Commission Junction. This was more than twice as much as any other affiliate provider. The data backing this claim came from online retailers surveyed for the 2010 Internet Retailer Top 500 Guide where CJ was the top seed for the 5th year in a row.

Commission Junction also scored 64% of the top 100 online retailers and lead in every sub category. The combination of all these points clearly indicates that Commission Junction is the affiliate network to beat.

As both a publisher and an advertiser, I am not surprised to read about CJ’s dominating presence with online retailers. While networks like Sharasale, Google and others offer compelling affiliate offers, there is no questioning CJ’s brand awareness and ability to snag advertisers.

Convio Releases Study on Online Marketing for Nonprofits

Austin, TX based Convio has released their 2010 “Online Nonprofit
Benchmark™ Study
”. This study was released by Convio as a guide for nonprofit marketers to get a better understanding of their online marketing efforts and also includes some really interesting data.

According to Convio, nonprofit web traffic grew from 2008 to 2009, but at a slower rate of 6%. This was a sharp change from double digit growth in previous years. Convio also found that conversion rates for nonprofits (visitors to newsletter subscribers) fell to 2.12% and email click through rates were down during 2009.

Small Restaurant Owners Embrace Email Marketing

A while back, I wrote a post on Marketing Pilgrim about online marketing in India. That very same day, and through no conscious decision, I decided to eat at Tarka, my local Indian restaurant. While sitting at the table enjoying naan and chicken kabobs I noticed a card on my table that said

Join our email list and get 10% off your next visit. Use our free wifi to sign up now!

To be fair, I wasn’t overly surprised to see this as Tarka is the only non-chain restaurant I know of with their own iPhone app; however, I was encouraged to see evidence that this small restaurant is engaging their patrons through email marketing and apparently they’re not alone.

Is Online Advertising in India on the Upswing?

India. It sits in South Asia, tantalizing you with its 1.18 billion people. You know that with a growing service economy, decent Internet access and a ton of English speakers, there must be opportunities you can cash in on. It turns out you could be right.

Indian portal Rediff.com as just published a press release in which Ajit Balakrishnan, chairman and CEO, states

This past quarter, January-March 2010, has sent signals that the online advertising market in India is starting to recover after nearly three consecutive quarters. Advertisers in the Finance, Education, IT products, Electronics among categories who had stayed away or reduced their online budgets during the past three quarters are now back. This is reflected in our India Online advertisement revenues for the quarter increasing 29% on a year-over-year basis and 15% on a sequential basis. This increase in revenues is despite us foregoing all ads on our home page.

Amnesty International Uses Social Media to Attack Shell

Human rights group Amnesty International is launching a social media campaign on Facebook, Twitter, MySpace and through bloggers, designed to raise money for a full page ad buy attacking oil company Shell in a UK national newspaper.

According to an article in the Guardian Newspaper:

“Amnesty’s full-page ad, which is being timed to coincide with Shell’s annual general meeting on 18 May, attacks the oil company for alleged environmental transgressions in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria.”

All politics aside, there are a few things I really like about this campaign from Amnesty.

Clear Goals

The proposition is simple: Donate money, help Amnesty buy a nationwide newspaper ad, and stick it to man. The audience is presented with specific requirements and a clearly spelled out reward.

Mobile Payments Startup Receives Cash from Google Ventures

Google Ventures has recently invested in Southlake, TX-based mobile payment provider Corduro. The amount of the investment was not disclosed.

According to Corduro’s website they offer “a range of payment services, for Internet, mobile, and traditional retail transactions, including support for recurring payments.” TechCrunch reports that “The service offers everything from electronic checks and bill pay to recurring payment support.”

Google Ventures announced the investment yesterday—just one day before mobile payment app Square launched on the iPad. Square’s iPhone app is scheduled for release later this week. Square uses an attached credit card reader to essentially turn any iPad or iPhone into a cash register.

Investing in a competing platform to Square makes a lot of sense for Google as they battle Apple for mobile supremacy.