Friday, June 27, 2008

Gasta News:Search Strategy is Critical

When the going gets tough, the tough get searching.
As the shadow of a recession looms large, the knock-on effect has seen ad budgets if not slashed then certainly tightened.
This week's NMA highlighted concerns raised by key figures within the online industry that brands are rethinking their online ad strategies in light of the current economic misery.
However, one area that looks like it will benefit is search - an accountable, proven marketing channel that shows no sign of slowing down.

Almost everyone from the numerous agencies NMA spoke to for this week's front-page story said that search, and indeed affiliate, will see more money pumped in to it as brands look to areas they can pretty much guarantee will work.
But as brands demand results, does that mean that creativity is sucked out of search?
We've seen plenty of moves this year that have given search specialists the chance to show how creative they can be with campaigns.
Reaction to Google's trademarking decision is probably the most high-profile example, with agencies saying that launching brand protection campaigns was now almost as high on the agenda as brand building and acquisition campaigns for some clients.
But will creativity now be put on hold in favour of results? Will clients solely demand ROI, rather than creative thinking?
Similarly, if search becomes the commodity that it's threatening to be and so simply Just Another Media Buy, will that take the excitement out of it?
I doubt it, but I'm sure that there'll be plenty of meetings between marketing directors and search agencies in months to come where the question of creativity versus results will be top of the agenda.