Archive for Google

Google Adwords: Google made a small mistake :)

I am sure Larry and Sergie could do the best Google search. With all the advance search techniques, the delimiters, the quotes, commas etc. I mean ofcourse – they designed and built it! They know it better than anything else!

Okay – how about Google Adwords?

Sample this: Most of us keep struggling with good landing pages, google adword creatives, text ads, image ads, gadget ads… Keep tweaking them all till we don’t get our CPC, CPA, CPL, visitors, visits, pageviews right.

But some things we never forget to check, re-check, click, doubleclick… is the URL… Some of the paranoid us also recheck the spellings, the brand names and the grammar one too many times!

Today while random surfing (I get paid for this :P), I noticed Google AdWords being used heavily for the US Elections 2008 registration phase… Obama or Palin (McCain yeah!) doesn’t matter to me.. But I thought I would like to see what Google has to offer for the campaign…

But what does it do?

It ends up using a Wrong URL for its ads (!) – Yes, check it out for yourself: http://www.google.com/2008election/

Worth forgiving I tell you… But if I was a client… I’d be nervous šŸ˜„

Here it is:

Advertisements

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Orkut improves user interface: a quick take

Google’s take over of Orkut has started to show in more ways than one.

To begin with, we started to see contextual advertising on the Orkut community pages.

Now the Google engineers are working hard to improvise the user experience. Now we can reply to scraps right from within our scrapbook.

Earlier, we had to click on someones user ID, then click on view scrapbook and then actually write and post the scrap! Pretty archaic and long winded! But now things are simpler and quicker! Kudos…
orkut-user-interface-reply.jpg

Today is Diwali, the festival of lights. This is what welcomed me on Orkut today.

orkut_india_holiday.jpg

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Google takes over YouTube or YouTube takes over Google?

Since Google gobbled over YouTube, I have been noticing an increase in organic search results pointing to YouTube.

While some may argue my over-observation, my argument is fairly empirical and common-sensible:

Google bought over YouTube so it could become a leader in internet video sharing. While this is OK, Google maintain its foothold in the contextual advertising space. With user generated content seeing phenomenal growth it makes sense.

And yeah yeah, YouTube can now ask daddy Google to give them some space on the Google Servers or atleast pay off the mammoth bandwidth bills!

However, YouTube needs to attract even more users to see Google’s money pay-off!

Simple, enhance the Google crawlers to crawl YouTube, and deliver organic search results!

Anyone else observing the same?

Watch the founders princely ‘keynote address’

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Friendly brands on the internet? Here’s how!

Today I noticed this friendly greeting from wordpress as soon as I logged on.

Howdy Mohak

This single word greetingĀ “howdy”, said so much about what wordpress was, what it stood for, and the overall brand personality.

I started to think on how this is relevant. While this is a greeting and that too somewhat basic, the relevance is hightened in the context of errors and server malfunctions!

See, errors on the internet sometimes totally outrage you. Errors could range from a 404-Page not found error to a scripting error.

How about error and other messages to communicate to buildĀ a personality, a connect with the audience?

It is really very simple. Multiple web services, new age applications are doing so. The error messages, talkback messages are not only human, they are sometimes kinda cheekish and witty. They go beyond the message and get on with communicating with the user on a one on one basis. Perhaps, part of a larger user-experience strategy.

In the last couple of months I have been noticing some very “friendly error messages”. Messages which could perhaps reduce the outrage (if not bring a smile). Obviously, the leaders and the more lateral of the websites are doing so.

Such little efforts surprise the user and build on a personality almost immediately. Time will tell whether they help to gain brand preference, leadership or competitive advantage.

Some of the best friendly messages I have encountered (not limited to errors) :

  1. Orkut (server unreachable, unable to scrap): “Bad, bad server. No donut for you
    Weā€™re sorry, but the orkut.com server has acted out in an unexpected way.
    Hopefully it will return to its usual helpful self if you give it another chance.
    We apologize for the inconvenience and our serverā€™s lack of consideration for others.”
  2. WordPress (welcome page on the top bar): “howdy user” (with user being replaced with the logged in user’s name)
  3. WordPress (when a blog is unreachable): Confessions Of A Server
    OH MY! Life is so unfair! What did I do wrong to be born a server in this day and age? I could have been a nice simple bicycle that people happily rode around on all day. But no, I’m stuck inside this metal case serving web pages instead. I never even see the light of day and all I can hear is the rush of the air-conditioning!
    Well, no more! I’m relaxing here with a cup of tea and a biscuit until someone shows me some love and attention.It never takes them long to fix me when I kick up a fuss so check back in a few minutes and I’ll be chugging along merrily again.!Signed,
    The WordPress.com web server
    (WordPress.com – where even the machines have life!)
  4. Gmail (when you have no spam): “Hooray, no spam here!”
  5. Gmail: Who needs to delete when you have over 2000 MB of storage?!
  6. Marketing profs (when they sent out multiple emails): “Ooops we goofed up”

With people spending so much time on their PCs and on the Internet, it is time we got friendly! Not to mention, the brand personality of the website can appeal in the long run, technology is replicable!

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Google’s Birthday? 8-year old rich geek!

Google 8th BirthdayWell, I would have loved to send in gifts to Larry Page and Sergey Brin and maybe Dr. Eric Schmidt too… But I don’t know the BIRTHDATE.Well, Google has always done things differently, and so differently that they don’t mantain an official date for the company’s establishment.

Here is the official link: http://www.google.com/support/bin/answer.py?answer=4866&topic=367

So what would Google do? Considering they like gifting us avid Google users somewhat of a surprise?

Five things they can do to celebrate the birthday:

  1. Double Gmail space? say from the current 2.5 GB to 5 GB?
  2. Do a searchable index of everyones birthday… (yes all global citizens and maybe they are already doing it)
  3. Give me a few shares of GOOG
  4. How about Google Cafes? Places where you sip your FREE COFFEE and search the Internet, discuss it! Perhaps that that fits well with Google’s philanthropic policy of giving everything for FREE!
  5. How about launching a music service and music hardware (a la iPod)? MusiG or GSound?

But I wonder, what an 8-year old very rich geek would do for his birthday?

Anyways, Happy Birthday (Or Birthmonth??) Google!

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