9 Internet Marketing Questions I Just Can't Answer

Ian Lurie

The last six weeks have sucked. Aside from SMX West, which was a nice, positive interlude, I’ve been dragging my rotting remains across a rocky, jagged waste filled with people who say things like “Your daughter just threw up again” and “Can you get me a breakdown of your hours for the last 5 months?”.
In that theme, I’ve written down 9 internet marketing questions that even God probably can’t answer:

  1. Why are the Google rankings jumping up and down like my son on a sugar rush? Over the last few weeks, I’ve seen sites moving up 10 spots and then down again, then up again, all in the course of a few hours. And it’s been constant. Matt, what’s the deal?
  2. Why does spam still work? I’m still getting 2,000-3,000 messages a day hawking ED remedies, breast augmentation vitamins, investment schemes and Jewish brisket (my favorite). Are folks really still biting on these offers?
  3. Why won’t Ask.com just do us a favor and die? It’s just one more algorithm we have to figure out. I love the engine, I love the technology, but they’re outmatched by Microsoft, who’s planning to buy the planet Earth next year in order to get all the smart employees working there.
  4. Can’t we come up with a better link baiting tactic than “Write great content that people want”? Or at least stop repeating ourselves?
  5. Am I the only internet marketing professional who has dysfunctional enterprise clients (who I love anyway)? From what I heard at SMX West, I may be. The session on industrial strength SEO made me think so, anyway. “Make SEO a cultural imperative”. Riiiiiggghhhhtttt…
  6. Why do people still think it’s a good idea to force the IT department to run the web site?
  7. Does Google really think that video ads are a good idea? If I’m scanning a search results page, there’s just no way I’m going to sit and wait for a video to load.
  8. Does Microsoft really think that acquiring Yahoo! will help them? Both companies have great people, cool products and decent market share. But merging the two will look like two galaxies colliding: Spectacular from a distance, catastrophic if you’re in the neighborhood.
  9. Why is internet marketing still considered a technical field, not a creative one? Every treats me like a geek. Just once, I want to be treated like the quirky creative guy.

OK, I’m done. Tomorrow’s post will be more useful, I swear.

Ian Lurie

Ian Lurie is founder of Portent. He's been a digital marketer since the days of AOL and Compuserve (25 years, if you're counting). Ian's recorded training for Lynda.com, writes regularly for the Portent Blog and has been published on AllThingsD, Smashing Magazine, and TechCrunch. Ian speaks at conferences around the world, including SearchLove, MozCon, Seattle Interactive Conference and ad:Tech. He has published several books about business and marketing: One Trick Ponies Get Shot, available on Kindle, The Web Marketing All-In-One Desk Reference for Dummies, and Conversation Marketing. Ian is now an independent consultant and continues to work with the Portent team- training the agency group on all things digital. You can find him at www.ianlurie.com

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