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2007 Predictions

Mashable has “tagged” me to share my predictions for 2007. Here’s some brief thoughts…

  1. Digg will get acquired or die (maybe even both). I think Digg is very close to jumping the shark and is close to its maximum level of exposure. It will either realize this and sell or wait too long and decline.
  2. Yahoo’s new search interface and algo will be key in the revival of the company’s fortunes. Once they switch to a platform that includes a performance metric, they’ll see better average CPCs.
  3. Social media marketing (SMM) will find its place. There will be some marketing agencies who actually figure out how to show an ROI from SMM.
  4. We’ll see at least one company, offering search marketing services, go public in 2007 and more acquired than in 2006.

The Five Key Missteps Microsoft Made with the Vista Blogger Fiasco

I’ve been giving some thought to why Microsoft’s attempt to reach out to bloggers, by sending them free Vista-loaded laptops, went horribly wrong.

I know that hindsight is 20/20, but as a business blogging consultant, here’s the five mistakes that I believe led to such a negative response from the blogosphere.

  1. Microsoft (and Edelman) was not clear in its message to bloggers. They sent out these fully-loaded, top of the line laptops to bloggers without being clear what exactly they expected from them. Did they want bloggers to review Vista? Were they expecting bloggers to disclose the gift? Would there be a follow-up from MSFT to learn flaws about Vista on laptops? The message was clearly too ambiguous as some bloggers shared news of the “gift” with their readers, while others didn’t.

The Ultimate Secret to Getting Your Website to Dominate Its Industry

Want to know the best way to push any website to the #1 popularity spot for its industry? It’s quite simple, you leverage the traffic from one of Google’s existing properties.

Need proof?

Google’s Blog Search has taken over the #1 spot from Technorati, thanks to a link placed on the homepage of Google News. Hitwise explains how that helped the Google service leapfrog Technorati in just a few weeks.

Google Blog Search began catching up to Technorati in October, when Google placed a link to Blog Search on the Google News home page, causing a 168% surge in market share for Google Blog Search over a two week period (week ending 10/14/06 vs. week ending 10/28/06). Since then, approximately 60% of Google Blog Search’s traffic has been coming directly from Google News, compared to less than 1% before the change.

Microsoft & Edelman Make Two Mistakes with Free Laptop Fiasco

I wasn’t going to share my thoughts on Microsoft sending out free laptops to some A-list bloggers. I figured it was a dumb move by Microsoft, without first seeking the permission of the blogger. But now Microsoft has made a bad situation worse by asking the bloggers to return the laptops after they “review” them. Here’s part of the new request…

You may have seen that other bloggers got review machines as well…As you write your review I just wanted to emphasize that this is a review pc…I hope you give your honest opinions. Just to make sure there is no misunderstanding of our intentions I’m going to ask that you either give the pc away or send it back when you no longer need it for product reviews.

PayPerPost Acquiring Performancing

According to TechCrunch, we can expect PayPerPost to announce tomorrow they have acquired blog services company Performancing. Their motivation?

The main purpose of the acquisition appears to be for PayPerPost to get access to the 28,000 Performancing users, most of whom are bloggers and potential customers of PayPerPost.

Nick Wilson and the Performancing team will keep the FireFox blog editor plugin and spin off a new company. No financial details have been released.

Does the Digg Effect Last?

Darren Rowse responds to suggestions that traffic gained from being on Digg is fleeting and not long-term. He offers some excellent insights as to how Digg can benefit a blog’s traffic.

Here’s Darren’s observation of how the Digg effect increases his long-term traffic.

I’ve certainly seen the same effect with my own blog’s traffic, with a roughly 10% increase in daily traffic after the two instances this blog has been on Digg’s front page.

If you’ve experienced the “Digg effect”, did any of the visitors stick around for the long-term?

Friday’s Internet Marketing News Roundup

This will likely be the last news post until after Christmas. Here’s what’s caught my attention today.

  1. Avinash Kaushik discusses the merits of javascript analytics over web log files.
  2. Robert Scoble has re-discovered banner ads. He explains how Texas Instruments’ banner ads managed to catch his attention.
  3. Mashable is reporting LinkedIn has secured new funding which suggests the company has a $250 million value.
  4. Social media expert, Neil Patel, explains why some SEO web sites are being banned by Digg. Digg just doesn’t like SEO. Maybe the social bookmark site is receiving cash incentives from Did-It.
  5. Is MSN inflating the conversion data at adCenter? Search Engine Roundtable takes a look.
  6. Wengo is offering an embedded flash player for bloggers wishing to share their good looks via their web cam.