Sam Harrelson





Can ValidClick Neutralize Clickfraud?

No one or their sister is talking about clickfraud. Sure, AdSense might be the most incredible ad platform ever, but at what cost? What are we in the CPA Network side of things doing to combat the eventual governmental/regulatory and public scrutiny that will inevitably be a result of a glossed-over clickfraud problem in online marketing?? Wayne Porter suggests a potential network with an eye on the prize, but are they taking the right step or are they interested in hopping on the “we have a solution for clickfraud that Google isn’t acknowledging” bandwagon without really offering any solution at all? At any rate, we should all pay attention when Porter addresses the issue of networks taking on clickfraud or spybots…

Think Partnership is going to launch ‘ValidClick Advertising Network’, a click-fraud solution, a network of 1000+ sites that boast proprietary clickfraud mechanisms, at the 10th annual ad:tech New York interactive marketing conference and expo. ad:tech New York is going to be held from November 6 to November 8 at the New York Hilton. We will see them showcase Kowabunga, Secondbite and MarketSmart (competing with Google’s grand plans?).

THK- Starts to Think, Shares no longer Sink – ReveNews – Wayne Porter: Greynets, Malware, Adware & Spyware Research- E-commerce, Online Revenue News & Opinions Since 1998

technorati tags:google, clickfraud, adsense, affiliate

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Glut of Cheap Ad Space (According to Yahoo)

Is Rosenweig correct in his assumption that the market is changing back from a seller’s market to a buyer favored space? I don’t think we’ve hit that point in inventory just yet, but even in the CPA world, this market shift will definitely occur again. This would also supply more reason that Google and other large firms with a good deal of inventory are looking to the world of CPA in hopes of backing out into a favorable effective CPM.

According to Yahoo! COO Dan Rosensweig, a “glut” of cheap ad space was partly to blame for his company’s sagging third-quarter ad revenue, reports Adweek, by way of Yahoo News.
The increase in cheap ad space appears driven by the recent popularity of social networks like MySpace and YouTube. In September, MySpace drove more than 35.7 billion impressions according to Nielsen//NetRatings. Despite the boost in impressions, the metrics company reported that unique visitors to MySpace dropped 4 percent.

In the ad networks space, providers are reporting double-digit gains in ad inventory. According to comScore Media Metrix, ValueClick’s reach is up 11 percent in the past six months and BlueLithium’s 22 percent.

“This is going to change the market dynamics,” says Dan Rosensweig, Yahoo! Inc. COO.

iMedia Connection: A “Glut” of Cheap Ad Space?

technorati tags:yahoo, google, affiliate, adsense, advertising

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Impression Fraud is a Problem

Does your program rely on search for attracting new affiliates, customers or traffic (most likely, it does)?  Then you need to be aware of “impression fraud”…

What is Impression Fraud?

Does it ever end? This has been a problem since day one with Google’s yield mechanism, but luckily, when you’re bidding on 25 million keywords like we are, I DARE anyone to try and impression fraud us! 🙂

links for 2006-10-30 » Vinny Lingham’s Blog

technorati tags:clickfraud, impression, seo, search, google

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Google’s Search Problems (More on Clickfraud)

What the writer of this piece doesn’t include is the clickfraud problem. Search spamming and gaming search results are a nuisance, but not crippling. Clickfraud money goes to some very nasty places and could bring close scrutiny that would topple the house of cards…

Many of you will agree that Google’s search result relevancy is going down the drain. All search engines are now being clogged with unbelievable amount of search engine spamming, and this trend is booming like never before. Here is why I think this is happening and how search engines such as Google can solve the problem once for all.

Jozef Jarosciak – Blog » Solution for improving Google’s search result relevancy!


Google Multimedia To Be Based in Chicago?

I’ve heard from my sources that the Google Multimedia branch (video, music, audio) will be based in their new(er) Chicago offices. Here’s a listing from Craig’s List with some info on that…

Audio Account Coordinator, Google Audio – Chicago

This position is based in Chicago, IL.

The Audio Account Coordinator’s primary responsibility is to provide support and maintenance to Media Account Management team and assigned clients.

Google: Audio Account Coordinator, Google Audio – Chicago


Is AFFoogle Needed?

affoogle.gifGoogle launched Google Co-Op a short time ago, and it hasn’t taken long for some in the affiliate marketing space to create a Google powered search engine specifically tailored to the affiliate marketing world.  Specifically Affiliate Classroom has launched AFFoogle. I hope to get in touch with them sometime in the coming week to discuss numbers and what their aims are with this endeavor.  Trouble is, the affiliate marketing universe is composed of many different galaxies that are had to nail down to specific sites. The larger Google search engine does a better job of allowing interested users to find information about specific marketers, affiliates, or programs simply because Google is just so large. Limiting something as varied and wide ranging as Affiliate Marketing to a couple of hand selected sites doesn’t do the industry justice but comes across as heavy handed editor work.


What’s AdTech Without the Parties?

Ah, the annual ritual of long flights, business card updating and Plaxo checking is occuring (I hate Plaxo, by the way). That can only point to the immenent coming of AdTech NY. Some go for the networking, some for the presentations and most for the parties.
I still have never had a worthwhile business discussion at one of the parties, and I’ve surely enjoyed many of them over the last five years. However, our industry does love to party based on the numerous opportunities to do so.
What’s the payoff, though? Is sponsoring a party at a major industry event like Affiliate Summit or AdTech worthwhile for a network or firm? I’ve heard mixed reviews from various people and I’d love to see hard numbers rather than just stacks of business cards that probably won’t get beyond a SalesForce entry or cold call at the most. I’m still skeptical of booths too, but that’s a personal bias I’ll explain later.

CPA Empire gets things rolling with their party announcement at Crobar (the flash animation on this site will give you a seizure, so be careful) in NYC. By the way, you typed “their” instead of “there” in the last sentence, Missy…

“You’re Invited!

If you’re heading to ad:tech NY in two weeks you won’t want to miss out on the biggest party of the conference. Join 1,500 of your friends for the Get Real Results Party! As one of the proud sponsors of this annual event, we want to make sure that all of our Affiliates have the chance to attend.
When: Monday, November 6, 2006
Where: Crobar
Doors will open at 9:00pm
If you would like to join us, please Click Here to visit the online registration form and add your name to the guest list. All guests must register in advance, so don’t miss your chance to attend the hottest party in the city!
We will send out additional updates as the conference gets closer, but their are a limited number of tickets available so get yours now!”


Azoogle 2.0 Coming Soon

From the Azoogle Ads Newsletter…

azoogle.gif

AzoogleAds 2.0 is just around the corner, and it is stocked with the tools you need to help you optimize your campaigns and ultimately make you more money!
WATCH YOUR EMAIL – They will be transitioning in stages and the
email will alert you when it’s time for YOU to start the transition.

What does the new AzoogleAds 2.0 system offer?
Here are just a few of the upgrades:

* Improved reporting – real-time custom reporting as well as the basics you expect such as eCPC and conversion rate calculations. View traffic and conversions by the hour, by traffic type, and creative reports, among many others
* Unparalleled search functionality – search for offers by name, ID, status, traffic type, category – the list goes on
* Customized affiliate homepage – there are graphs, recommended offers, news, alerts, and common tasks at a glance on the home page
* Payment Options – you can request one of three payment options
* Affiliate Manager Communications – see who you’re working with and how you can reach them

So what’s happening next? In the next 10 days, your affiliate account will be transitioned to AzoogleAds 2.0. Once you have been transitioned, you will no longer have access to AzoogleAds 1.0. In order to enjoy the benefits of the new AzoogleAds 2.0 system you will need to change your ad links within three months of being moved over to 2.0. Your affiliate manager can answer any questions you might have on swapping out your ad links.

From the Azoogleads Newsletter. Read the rest of the important transition details are at the Azoogle Forum.


Google Bombing Politics

From the just plain stupid way that politicos have been trying to game Google or Youtube, it seems that the very area that could benefit the most from the social web (POLITICS) is either too dumb, too corrupt or too oblivious to see the real opportunity.

Google Bombs are nothing new to most of us who spend a good deal of time online. They were first discussed sometime in 2001 if I remember correctly, so they’ve been a presence for five years now. We’ve seen them used in a variety of ways from humor to mean-spirited attacking.

Perhaps the best known Google Bomb of all time was the “miserable failure” meme that passed around the web a few years ago. Did you miss that one? Head over to Google and type in “miserable failure” and hit the “I’m Feeling Lucky” choice. The result is a product of a large amount of links with similiar keywords (in this case, Dubya and the term miserable failure).

Last year, Google Bombing even made it into the dictionary (for those of us silly people who still actually use non-virtual spell checkers).

However, the latest use of Google Bombing as a means to an end raises concern. Admittedly, our political process in the US is highly flawed and the fact that over 2 billion dollars have been spent on “mid-term” elections while 50 million Americans are uninsured. But, Chris Bowers, a contributer to the “liberal” blog MyDD.com has dreamed up a new scheme to target 50 Republican candidates around the country with a campaign of Google Bombs and AdSense buys.

Fifty or so other Republican candidates have also been made targets in a sophisticated “Google bombing” campaign intended to game the search engine’s ranking algorithms. By flooding the Web with references to the candidates and repeatedly cross-linking to specific articles and sites on the Web, it is possible to take advantage of Google’s formula and force those articles to the top of the list of search results.

…Each name is associated with one article. Those articles are embedded in hyperlinks that are now being distributed widely among the left-leaning blogosphere. In an entry at MyDD.com this week, Mr. Bowers said: “When you discuss any of these races in the future, please, use the same embedded hyperlink when reprinting the Republican’s name. Then, I suppose, we will see what happens.”

But then it gets a little murkier…

An accompanying part of the project is intended to buy up Google Adwords, so that searches for the candidates’ names will bring up advertisements that point to the articles as well. But Mr. Bowers said his hopes for this were fading, because he was very busy.

This really troubles me. Not only does the money part of running for political audience make the idea of doing so prohibit the best Americans from entering politics, but these sorts of algorithm gamings simply dilute the political process and what we expect from voters. I’m ashamed that Bowers is doing this in hopes of electing Democrats, because as a Democrat I feel that we have a more optimistic message grounded in transparency and real democratic principles. This sort of short sighted crap is not needed if our message resonates with voters.

Further, this sort of juvenile tactic shows a complete misunderstanding of the potential for using the web in a constructive way for a political campaign. Howard Dean and Ned Lamonte were officially ordained as “blog elected” candidates by the mostly-ignorant large media outlets, but in reality there still has not been a national candidate to make use of the real power of social memetics or web2.0’ish community. John Edwards has been paying a good deal of attention to this area (even appearing at Gnomedex and on Rocketboom), so I hope Edwards will use what he has learned in his presidential candidacy in 2008. If he does, it will be groundbreaking.

Spending billions of dollars on mudslinging and negative messages might have worked before, but that paradigm is rapidly shifting and politicians seem to be the last people to come to terms with that important point.

So, here’s my plea to politicians: Stop trying to game the system and wake up to the constructive possibilities of the web. Do blogging right, make good YouTube videos (good meaning full of heart of real creative expression), construct worthwhile social memes and you just might get elected without contributing to a system already filled with greed, ignorance, violence and stupidity.

A New Campaign Tactic: Manipulating Google Data – New York Times


How Much of a South Carolinian Are You?

Jamie M. sent me this.  As an ex-pat Southern Carolinian living in Northern Carolina now, I was surprised at the results.

Turns out I’m 100% South Carolinian.

Start with 100 and take off 5 of each question that you answer NO to. The higher the percentage the more of a South Carolinian you are!

1) Do you like sweet tea? Yep
2) Do you get dressed up to go tailgating for a football game? Yep
3a) (Girls) Do you wear you’re pearls with jeans?
3b) (guys) Do you own more than 10 hats but only wear 1? Yep
4) Have you ever gone to the Carolina cup? Yep
5) Have you even been “muddin”? Yep
6) Have you ever spent a day at “the river”? Yep
7) Do you own anything with the tree and moon on it? Yep
8) Do you love Boiled Peanuts? Yep
9) Have you ever been to some county festival (i.e. Okra strut, peach festival, water festival)? Yep
10) Have you ever been to the “market” in Charleston? Yep
11) Have you spent at least one night partying in 5 points?  Oh Have I??  Yep
12) Have you heard of Shealy’s bbq? Oh HAVE I?? Yep
13) Have you ever spent a night at Myrtle Beach? Yep
14) Do you eat grits on a regular basis? Yep
15) Have you eaten at a waffle house more than once a week?  OH HAVE I????? Yep
16) Do you still use sir/ma’am, please and thank you on a daily basis? Yep
17) Do you know at least part of “the shag”? Yep
18) Have you ridden in the back of a pickup truck? Yep
19) Do you say the word “y’all” all the time? Yep
20) Do you still have that southern charm? Yep

Some things never chage!