Branding Advertising, Google’s Slap, and You!

My last post about bringing value to the Internet and making money while doing so has raised some questions, especially from those who are used to direct marketing and measuring results with targeted keywords etc. The fact is that there are changes that are happening around us and a new trend is building, and my last post was an adaptation to these changes.

In the past few months tens of thousands of affiliate marketers got their Adwords accounts permanently suspended and they were banned for life from using the program. Those affiliates are used to the targeted keywords and direct marketing results measured by direct ROI. And those marketers claim that they made Google when they switched from Overture (Yahoo’s PPC back in the early 2000s) and spent millions of dollars every month with Google to make millions in revenue for themselves and their families.

It’s also said on many blogs and seminars is that Google did that to cut the way on floggers, but it’s also in favor of large corporations. And this is the change in the trend of advertising on Google.

The current advertisers on Google’s Adwords, which includes search and content network (Adsense) has two new criteria that are different from affiliates:

1. They have the advertising budget that they must spend, and the return is not a direct matter for them because:

2. They are also interested in branding their companies names, perhaps more than in direct sales.

When you are after branding the keywords are not going to make a huge difference for you. All what you need from your advertising to be effective is to easily leave your name printed in the minds of the readers. With that in mind, it makes more sense to bid on cheap keywords that get a lot of traffic than on targeted keywords that get tons of competition and is consequently very expensive.

If you check any adense block on different websites from one location you’ll find that there are certain ads that are repeatedly appearing to you regardless of the content of the website. Those are after branding.

So if  you are providing content about the latest in the news, guided with Google trends, and with a some free press releases and articles submitted to article directories you can get a flood of traffic to your blog, and those branding type of ads will keep showing to your readers according to their location not according to the content.

I hope this article explains my last one a little bit and makes it make sense to you.

Brand Names Are Taking Over

During the first quarter of 2010 it was obvious that the biggest names in affiliate networks are flirting with brand names. And although these networks are criticizing the Google slap and it’s impact on the affiliate marketing industry, they are doing the same.

Small affiliate marketers are now having their accounts terminated or suspended for low volume. This means that small affiliates are now facing the challenge of either growing into big boys or losing their business. This challenge is time sensitive. And affiliate marketers who are just starting and those who lost their Adword accounts are supposed to find an efficient way to grow their business according to a plan.

The picture is not different on the other side of the coin. Small advertisers are now facing the challenge of being crashed by the big brand names. Some networks,  like hydra, is now moving on this new trend: brand names. If you don’t have a well known brand name your offers are facing the threat of elimination.

Which brings us to the point of this article. Branding is the key to succeed in 2010. And it works for both advertisers and affiliates.

What I expect to see during the rest of 2010 is as follows:

1. Advertisers will be spending more on branding their names. This will open the door for new positions in those small companies that will focus only on media placement and getting their name in front of as many people as they can, for as long as they can. Fly-by-night businesses will be having hard time getting their offers accepted to rotate on big affiliate networks, and as a result scams artists will be very busy finding a way around the new situation.

2. Affiliate marketers will also try to brand their names, or turn their small home “commission-based-sales” businesses into registered marketing companies with their own trademarks. This will put the marketers in a position that they will have to be picky on what to promote in order to maintain a good reputation for their trademarks.

3. The very limited liability of affilaite marketers will be a history due to the new FTC regulations, and the branding trend they have to take in order to succeed.

4. The small affiliate networks that deal with small advertisers will have a lot of work to do due to the increasing demand from the small advertisers who can not, or are not willing to, brand themselves, and due to the termination/suspension of low-volume affiliate marketers by the big networks. It’s pretty obvious that the quality of offers on these networks will be questionable and this will push their affiliates to work hard on protecting their anonymity.

As have been seen before in the offline world, small business will shrink, or be forced to the back alley, while big brands will be expanding. Good for the consumer, good for the super affiliates, good for the affiliate networks either way, and bad for the scam artists. New and low-volume affiliate marketers have to take it seriously from now on.