Category: Internet Marketing

Doing Business, Profits, and Startups

By , November 6, 2015

The goal of most businesses, I believe, should be to earn a profit from the sale of goods or services.

Over the past 20+ years, we’ve seen a succession of bizarre business models, in which little thought was given to “profit,” but instead to intermediate metrics (our web site needs visitors, eyeballs, clicks, engagement, etc.).  Many dot-com companies succumbed to ‘perverse incentives.’Read more »

Channel Conflict 101

By , April 10, 2014

Sixteen years ago, I received a call from someone who worked for a large computer manufacturer, which was planning to add an online direct-sales program.  The caller was creating a business plan for this new division of the company, and wanted to hire me to design an affiliate program.

My first question was, “What about channel conflict?”

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AdWords’ Dot-TK Plague & the End of Automatic Placements

By , December 3, 2013

All year, I’ve been doing battle with a never-ending series of aggressive fraudsters who use AdSense ads across many dot-tk (.tk) domains which each generate small numbers of cheap fraudulent clicks, siphoning money from any campaign which has Automatic Placements enabled.

Why does it work? It works because Google AdWords refuses to enable exclusion of placements (web sites) based on Top Level Domain (TLD). Read more »

Google Gets Creepier – pre-filled subscribe box in search ad

By , November 7, 2013

This just seems creepy and wrong: Google (AdWords) allows advertisers to create Search ads which pre-fill forms with Google Account data. In this example, my email was pre-filled next to a “subscribe” button which doesn’t say what I’d be subscribing to — alongside a completely meaningless “Privacy” link which doesn’t disclose how the email address would be used. Read more »

Google’s AdWords ‘Interest’ Targeting

By , November 1, 2013

I’ve long wondered how Google evaluates a person’s “interests” in order to display advertising that’s not displayed “in context.”

I think Google’s algorithms need tweaking, because Google has an unreasonably long memory regarding my “interests.” Read more »

In Praise of

By , September 18, 2013 is an awesome web site: it analyzes your web site and provides detailed suggestions for how to improve the page-load time; this is incredibly useful when trying to diagnose the issue, “why is my web site loading to slowly?”

Note that there are multiple tabs with information: make sure to click on the “YSlow” and “Timeline” tabs to see more information.

Here are screen shots showing the information for this site ( Read more »

SEO: Understanding Audience and Purpose(s)

By , August 12, 2012

I don’t write much about Search Engine Optimization (SEO), despite its importance to the success of every web business. That’s because I view SEO as an integral part of every aspect of online marketing — it just isn’t a discrete function that can be managed separately. SEO is holistic.

I’ve intentionally written only in very simplistic terms about SEO: “Be Relevant and Useful” and “Common-Sense SEO.” Today, I want to emphasize the importance of audience and purpose in SEO and web marketing.

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Ending My Career as a “Solo” Internet Marketing Consultant

By , July 11, 2012

For the past 15 years, I’ve earned most of my income from my work as an individual internet marketing consultant.  This year, I must finally acknowledge that I can’t continue as a “solo” consultant.
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Book Review: How to Make Money With Affiliate Marketing Even Without a Website

By , June 27, 2012

How to Make Money With Affiliate Marketing Even Without a Website (an ebook by Joan Mullally with Evelyn Trimborn) is mostly sincere — but quite misleading. The authors know and share a lot of information about affiliate marketing, but much of their advice is incorrect or incomplete. And ultimately, their advice won’t work for at least 95% of their target audience.

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Which Metric Matters Most?

By , June 12, 2012

I found two marketing articles quite thought-provoking this week:

The common factor, of course, is “which metrics should marketers use to evaluate performance?”

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