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Seth Godin has written 12 bestsellers that have been translated into 33 languages

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all.marketers.tell.stories

All Marketers Tell Stories

Seth's most important book about the art of marketing

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free.prize.inside

Free Prize Inside

The practical sequel to Purple Cow

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linchpin

Linchpin

An instant bestseller, the book that brings all of Seth's ideas together.

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meatball.sundae

Meatball Sundae

Why the internet works (and doesn't) for your business. And vice versa.

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permission.marketing

Permission Marketing

The classic Named "Best Business Book" by Fortune.

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poke.the.box

Poke The Box

The latest book, Poke The Box is a call to action about the initiative you're taking - in your job or in your life, and Seth once again breaks the traditional publishing model by releasing it through The Domino Project.

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purple.cow

Purple Cow

The worldwide bestseller. Essential reading about remarkable products and services.

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small.is.the.new.big

Small is the New Big

A long book filled with short pieces from Fast Company and the blog. Guaranteed to make you think.

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survival.is.not.enough

Survival is Not Enough

Seth's worst seller and personal favorite. Change. How it works (and doesn't).

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the.big.moo

The Big Moo

All for charity. Includes original work from Malcolm Gladwell, Tom Peters and Promise Phelon.

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the.big.red.fez

The Big Red Fez

Top 5 Amazon ebestseller for a year. All about web sites that work.

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the.dip

The Dip

A short book about quitting and being the best in the world. It's about life, not just marketing.

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the.icarus.deception

The Icarus Deception

Seth's most personal book, a look at the end of the industrial economy and what happens next.

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tribes

Tribes

"Book of the year," a perennial bestseller about leading, connecting and creating movements.

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unleashing.the.ideavirus

Unleashing the Ideavirus

More than 3,000,000 copies downloaded, perhaps the most important book to read about creating ideas that spread.

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v.is.for.vulnerable

V Is For Vulnerable

A short, illustrated, kids-like book that takes the last chapter of Icarus and turns it into something worth sharing.

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we.are.all.weird

We Are All Weird

The end of mass and how you can succeed by delighting a niche.

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whatcha.gonna.do.with.that.duck

Whatcha Gonna Do With That Duck?

The sequel to Small is the New Big. More than 600 pages of the best of Seth's blog.

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« Precision in language | Main | 100 pounds per sticker »

The billion-dollar question--Joe Schmo wins

Does context matter?

If you're running a pay per click ad designed to support a cost-per-acquisition strategy, (Google AdWords, et.al.) then does it matter where your ad runs?

Remember, the point of the ad is to get someone to click (that's what you're charged for...  the click) and then the goal of the site is to convert that click into permission and eventually a customer.

So, does it matter where the ad runs if it works?

Media buyers sure think so. Jason Klein at Special Ops Media says, "With Quigo, you know it's on ESPN.com, not Joe Schmo's sports blog."

I can understand why a media buyer would say this. I can understand why Jason Clement at Carat said, "We had essentially pulled all of those big advertisers off of the ad networks [Google, Yahoo] by the end of the year." After all, the media buyers need to demonstrate that they are using their hard-earned intuition to actually earn their commissions.

But if I were one of those 'big advertisers,' I'd think really hard about whether Jason is doing me a service. The hard work of running contextual ads is testing. Run an ad, test the landing page, see what works. If it works, do it more. If it doesn't work, do it less.

Sure, you need to start with intuition. But my intuition tells me that Joe Schmo's sports blog might actually perform better than a high-profile site. My intuition tells me that a click process that begins on a digital photo review site is more likely to lead to a purchase than one that begins on a fine art website.

In order to make this work, the big ad networks need to tell you where the traffic is coming from and they need to make it easy for you to choose where to run the ads next time so you can repeat and scale the process.

The funny thing is that this context argument was perfected by the big networks when cable TV came along. They used it to justify selling unmeasurable expensive ads on mass market network shows against the competition: unmeasurable ads on more focused cable shows. Then it happened again with banner ads--the big name sites always could charge more than the smaller ones.

This time, though, we've got numbers. Let's use em.

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Listed below are links to weblogs that reference The billion-dollar question--Joe Schmo wins:

» Quigo on the NY Times from Web X.0
NY Times has published a nice story about Quigo this morning. From it:What Quigo offers is transparency and control in what can often be an opaque business: advertisers pay Yahoo and Google for contextual ad placement on a wide variety [Read More]

» Seth gets it right, almost... from Web X.0
Seth Godin (a WebX.0 favorite!) responds to the NY Times piece on Quigo today with all fair points:If you're running a pay per click ad designed to support a cost-per-acquisition strategy, (Google AdWords, et.al.) then does it matter where your [Read More]

» Transparent is the new opaque with Quigo from Voodoo Ventures - Idea Fuel Blog
If youve ever had a business relationship with Google (i.e. Google Adwords or Adsense), you may already know that its a little less than egalitarian. While the services they offer are innovative, and, if done right, lucrative, Google hold... [Read More]

» Google Gives In (But Not To You) from The Commerce360 Blog
Everyone is understandably pleased about Google’s decision begin sharing the URLs of sites that run your adwords ads on their content network, because the transparency (and related features) will allow you to filter unwanted sites from your distributio... [Read More]

» Who's afraid of Quigo? from Marketing Mystic
According to a recent New York Times article, both Yahoo! and Google should be worried about this New York-based ad services upstart that's positioning itself as an alternative to the online giants. The article says, Here is how this contextual [Read More]

» Seth Godin on the Trial and Error Economy from Businomics Blog
Seth Godin (though he does not use the phrase) understands the Trial and Error Economy. He posts about figuring out where on-line pay-per-click advertising should appear. This is like the most obvious example conceivable; how sad that Seth has to [Read More]

« Precision in language | Main | 100 pounds per sticker »