“Both Facebook and Amazon are coming at Google’s lock on advertising from new angles–that’s why this could be an honest to goodness fight for online advertising dollars and beyond.” — Ellen Gipko, SEJ
Ther are some interesting developments in the world of online advertising. Over at Search Engine Journal, Ellen Gipko has taken a look at Why Amazon and Facebook Are Gaining on Google and gives us what she sees as pivotal in this turf war. There’s only one spot at the top, and looking back, you can see how different internet giants have struggled to stay there. Google replaced Yahoo!, owning the majority of the search traffic. Now there are new players aiming for its spot:
Amazon Aims For It All
Amazon knows shoppers, and it knows no boundaries. There’s a constant stream of innovative ways to get people on the site and shopping — including a serious look at drones delivering your stuff. Drone delivery is a little too much for one guy I know who swears he will shoot it down if it flies over his roof, but he might be in the minority. There are lots of folks who would think that was really cool and order something just to see it happen.
Amazon really is a ginormous search engine for shoppers, and it has collected lots of data about shopping habits. It already has ubiquitous ads and email promotions, and you are going to see it grow. It is going head-to-head with Google on things like cloud computing and online advertising.
Facebook Is Flexing Its Muscles
Facebook knows social, and it knows people. As Ms. Gipko states, “Google AdWords knows peoples’ search phrases. Facebook knows peoples’ likes, interests, employment history, political views, who they’re related to, who their friends are, and much, much more (probably more than Facebook users really want to think about).”
Advertising is really about connecting with people, and that’s what Facebook is all about. The massive amount of data we give up for the “free” service of connecting with friends and family is a lucrative source of advertising power. There’s even a hint of following users on any device…cue the creepy music.
What Should We Do?
This is a perfect example of the reason that marketing, online or offline, has to be more about the market and less about the method. Things keep changing, so our methods need to be flexible to change with them. The reason for marketing doesn’t change, though:
Online marketing strategy is essentially letting those who would be interested in your products or services know about your business and convincing them to become customers. It doesn’t matter who is winning the turf wars because we need to be able to utilize any or all of the combatants to get our message across. It does mean we need to pay attention to the fight so we can stay relevant.