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62% Don’t Trust Search Engines

Hakia.com has sponsored the Search for Better Search website, which so far looks rather thin, though it does have some interested poll responses. Among them: 62% don’t trust search engines with their private information.

That should probably read something more like “I don’t want search engines to have my private information, but really, Google could steal my identity at any moment because I’ve already surrendered all my private information to AdSense.” Unfortunately, the poll’s sample size is rather small (298 respondents so far).

Hakia’s influence on the page seems to show through, as well. An older poll, with almost 700 respondents, asks, “What do you think a search engine should do?” The top two answers by quite a margin are “Understand my question the way a human does 38% (262 votes)” and “Bring highly relevant results with semantic precision 26% (179 votes).”

Is Click Fraud a Tired Topic?

Click Forensics has issued a new click fraud report, claiming the rate has increased to 15.8% compared from 14.1% last year.

Until this announcement, it appeared the debate had died, mostly due to greater transparency from Google and Yahoo about click fraud. Still, Click Forensics has a living to make, hence the need for more reports – this time claiming the increase is due to increased botnet activity.

I almost didn’t cover the news, but I just had to share Google’s response with you…

“These estimates continue to count clicks Google does not charge to advertisers as fraudulent, so they are not actually click fraud estimates. Furthermore, their estimates have never reflected the invalid click rates we see at Google. It is also worth nothing that in all of 2007, only two advertisers have contacted us regarding click fraud data from Click Forensics, and in both cases we found that the suspicious activity was not charged for in the first place.”

Mobile Email: Skimmed While Driving?

Among US mobile email users, as reported today from ExactTarget’s “E-Mail Marketing for the Small Screen” by eMarketer Daily, there should definitely be a higher mortality rate: 39% of them read their email while driving. In all honesty, I have attempted to text message while driving—sufficeth it to say this is not a good idea.

39% of them also read their email while talking on the phone, 40% in the restroom, and 61% during a meeting or class. Such manners!

The study also found that almost 90% of mobile email users skimmed their emails on their phones, only to read them in full or delete them from their computers. 54% had followed a link in a mobile email and 20% had used their phones to make an online purchase—which, considering the adoption rate, is pretty encouraging..

Facebook Poised to Overtake MySpace in the UK?

Hitwise’s Heather Hopkins has analyzed the search frequencies for “facebook” and the data suggests the social network could soon overtake MySpace in the UK.

Here’s how the search numbers for “facebook”,”myspace” and “bebo” look:

Bebo is still kicking-butt, but you can see Facebook has overtaken MySpace. Now let’s look at actual market share in the UK.

 

Both Bebo and MySpace are losing steam. Meanwhile, Facebook continues to grow its audience.

Any predictions on if and when Facebook will trump MySpace?

The Effects of Social Media on the Top 100 Brands

As some of you know – and now all of you know – I’m writing a book on online reputation management and a big part of that is about utilizing social media. So, I’m excited to share with you Immediate Future’s “The Top 100 Brands in Social Media” study of which brands are most benefiting from social media.

The study looked at the Interbrand Top 100 global brands for 2006 and then reviewed each for their involvement in social media channels such as:

  • The “blogosphere” as a whole
  • Social networks Bebo and MySpace
  • Video sharing site YouTube
  • Photo sharing sites Flickr and Photobucket
  • Social bookmarking sites del.icio.us and ma.gnolia 
  • Social editorial site Digg

Share of Voice

Shine a Light on Cloaked Links

So I’m sitting here listening to some old school jams, reading my daily mundane marketing RSS feeds, and preparing something to put me out of my misery. But wait, what is this? A blog post, and not an article, that is more useful than any article I have read in a month (or longer)?

I’ve covered link cloaking before. It’s usually not hard to spot. Those that do it usually do so in excess. While discussing SearchEngineWorld.com and possible link cloaking David Naylor brings to light that Google is showing site => redirect => site links compared to Yahoo only showing site => site links with a backlink check.

Can Online Video Advertising Really Reach $4.3B by 2011?

eMarketer is predicting a huge surge in online video advertising spending over the next four years, with this year’s $775 million growing to $4.3 billion by 2011. While the number sounds impressive, it will account for just 10% of all internet advertising and will be a fraction of the $46.3 billion spent on TV advertising by 2011.

Business Week explains why online video ads will grow so easily.

It’s after 2011 that the floodgates will really open, says eMarketer senior analyst David Hallerman. By then, the distinction between television and Web video will be so blurred that advertisers will begin directing more of their marketing budgets to the online version. “All you have to do is take a few percentages off of a TV advertiser’s typical budget and that is going to be a large amount of money,” says Hallerman.