Why Facebook's Traffic Win Over Google Means Nothing ...

37 replies
I was going to blog this, until I realized I no longer have a blog.

Everyone seems to be hyping about the recent news: "Facebook traffic has 'officially' passed Google!" ... does this mean Facebook is thee place to be spending your money, promoting your products and collecting your traffic? Maybe. Maybe not. But in terms of SEO and PPC I think Google still has the overall power.

I've never really seen Facebook as a worthy ad platform. Unless you are promoting something for free, or something that's trending, people do not want to part with their money.

Users on Facebook are not there to find your product. They are there to socialize, catch up with family and friends, send a few messages and probably play a few games. Ads on Facebook are a nuisance to most users more than anything. It's very hit and miss.

Compare this to Google. Google is a search engine, people go their to search for what they want. When ads appear on Google they are very relevant. The advert is a possible solution to their problem.

I know a lot of people will say that Facebook's ad platform is much better than Google's because you can narrow down your target audience, but you have to understand Facebook is a totally different entity. It's like comparing an apple to an orange.

When you're narrowing down your target audience you have to ask yourself is your audience really interested in your product/offer or are you guessing they are because they are middle aged, single parents who live in a poor estate in comparison to your audience searching Google for "cheap baby monitors".

Lets move on to the topic of traffic.

The recent hype tells us Facebook has more page views than Google. How are they comparing page views? I have a feeling they are aggregating all page views and not unique page views which makes the comparison useless.

I hit Facebook 10-15 times a day. I hit Google about 5 times a day on average. As an advertiser, I'd be more interested in how many times a person uses Google a day. The low numbers mean nothing.

When I use Facebook its to read a message, update my status, check my pages. I'm not looking to buy anything. When I use Google I'm looking for something and possibly would part with cash depending on what I am searching for.

Also, a lot of people use Facebook from their mobile when away from the computer. Which would also account for the increase in traffic.

To conclude, just because Facebook has more traffic than Google don't assume the traffic is of any quality.
#facebook #google #means #traffic #win
  • Profile picture of the author GrowTallerNiche
    Facebook is good for advertising facebook games and other forms of games.
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  • Profile picture of the author Riz
    Have you tested advertising of Facebook or are you just assuming that there are no buyers?

    I promoted a membership site on Google Ads - did not convert and was very difficult to rank unless i paid thru the roof for ppc.

    Promoted on FB. I was able to narrow it down to not just age and location but also to the types of groups and 'likes' they belong to. The ad became super targeted and is now our main source of traffic for our membership site and it converts higher than any other ad platform we have used.

    So depending on what you are promoting and how you are promoting it varies from ad to ad when it comes to Google V Facebook ads.

    Just my 2 cents

    Riz
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    • Profile picture of the author jennymcroland
      Originally Posted by Riz View Post

      Have you tested advertising of Facebook or are you just assuming that there are no buyers?

      I promoted a membership site on Google Ads - did not convert and was very difficult to rank unless i paid thru the roof for ppc.

      Promoted on FB. I was able to narrow it down to not just age and location but also to the types of groups and 'likes' they belong to. The ad became super targeted and is now our main source of traffic for our membership site and it converts higher than any other ad platform we have used.

      So depending on what you are promoting and how you are promoting it varies from ad to ad when it comes to Google V Facebook ads.

      Just my 2 cents

      Riz
      i absolutely agree with you . I have a friend who have vowed he would never place any ad via google again, because the last time he invested his last $750 on ads....expecting his bank account to explode, he literally got zero sales. to him it was money flushed down d toilet.
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    • Profile picture of the author jennymcroland
      i absolutely agree with you . I have a friend who have vowed he would never place any ad via google ad again, because the last time he invested his last $750 on ads....expecting his bank account to explode, he literally got zero sales. to him it was money flushed down d toilet.
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    • Profile picture of the author jennymcroland
      considering the nature of facebook ad which can be really targetted unlike google ad, i prefer to use fb ad platform
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      • Profile picture of the author buxnut
        Interesting thread, but I'm not sure I get the point.

        Its kinda like comparing a basketball team to a hockey team and wondering which would score more points against the other. A valid argument would hold that hoopsters would score way more points, but the counterpoint would be that the starting 5 would be carted off on stretchers moments after the puck dropped.

        These platforms serve 2 completely different purposes. I would imagine that both will continue to be successful in their own right, regardless of which one is "better."
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  • Profile picture of the author tonis
    It's being said that facebook is the next Google adwords and unfortunatelly i must agree...
    Facebook ad's convert really good and the cost is also smaller. Google is a good search engine and i believe that it will stay that way, but what comes to PPC then facebook is surely the next thing.

    Some time ago we made a test, same ad in facebook and google....
    Google ad costed us twice more than the facebook ad, and conversion was almost same, but facebook was a little better...
    From that point on my future ads runs only in facebook.
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  • Profile picture of the author sbucciarel
    Banned
    Originally Posted by JamesJeffery View Post

    Everyone seems to be hyping about the recent news: "Facebook traffic has 'officially' passed Google!" ... does this mean Facebook is thee place to be spending your money, promoting your products and collecting your traffic? Maybe. Maybe not. But in terms of SEO and PPC I think Google still has the overall power.

    I've never really seen Facebook as a worthy ad platform. Unless you are promoting something for free, or something that's trending, people do not want to part with their money.
    Ha ha ... Look at this thread. Apparently Google thinks it's a worthy ad platform.

    http://www.warriorforum.com/main-int...-facebook.html
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  • Profile picture of the author wfhblueprints
    In my opinion Facebook is an extremely powerful marketing tool, but it is a different beast to Google.

    I rank Facebook as a word of mouth tool and if used in the right way it can generate masses of targeted traffic.

    Facebook is part of my traffic generation.....as is Google.

    The fact that more people are using facebook is a bonus for me and just reinforces that I need to ensure that I continue to use it!
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  • Profile picture of the author asimbawany
    So depending on what you are promoting and how you are promoting it varies from ad to ad when it comes to Google V Facebook ads.
    agreed. Anything to do with entertainment, hobby and passing time will be worth it on facebook I believe.
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  • Profile picture of the author Sachine
    Point well made... People using google are actively searching for something... be it a product or an offer... while people on FB are there to socialize... Its similar to the content network where you have to do interrupt marketing... I made a mistake of assuming my successful ads on Google would work on FB... well it does not..
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    • Profile picture of the author JamesJeffery
      @Riz yes I have tested. I'm going to bite the hand that feeds me here but I've made over £130,000 on Facebook in the past 6-7 months.

      People are missing the point here. Why is there so much "Google Vs. Facebook" hype. The only thing they have in common is they are both competing for the #1 traffic rank.

      And with all the hype people are easily mislead.

      Facebook is a great communication tool with added benefits such as Games and viral promotion tools. Yes you can promote your business with Facebook, but people won't use Facebook to search for your business. You need an active website to generate traffic to your Facebook page/group.

      It's the same as Facebooks new email. I've read a lot about it, but it's not going to change email marketing. And frankly, who is going to change their 5-10 year old hotmail account for a Facebook email? It will be one of those email addresses that people have, but never use. I can see it now.

      People rely on Google and need it.

      Who remembers Faceparty, Bebo, MySpace .... and who thinks something new won't come along to replace Facebook?

      There is very little in terms of "new" that Facebook can do.

      They have the world in their hands ... now they just have to keep them there and keep them entertained.

      Edit: Let me quickly add ...

      When you use Facebook do you notice the ads? Or have you become oblivious to them? But when you search Google ... do you notice the ads? The first place I look on Google is rank1, rank 2, rank3, ads. It's rare that I won't check the ads when searching for something like "SP1200 repairs UK" (if any ads exist).
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      • Profile picture of the author Riz
        Hi James,

        I'm not disputing that the Facebook V Google Traffic war is pointless to us, however, i disagree with your notion that Facebook is not a worthy ad platform.

        You might not notice the ads but others definately do.

        How do i know?

        I've tested it for my membership sites. For terms that were far to expensive on the Adwords platform i could advertise to my target audience on FB for a very good ROI.

        Yes it works differently and is not targetted by keywords as FB is not a search engine. Also, you are correct that no one looks for your business on FB. However, if your ads are targetted correctly you can be in front of a very targetted audience although at the time they may not specifically be looking for your business as they may be on Google.

        Also.........

        I have clients where we implement both Google Adwords and Facebook ads. They work differently but both are producing a high ROI.

        Lets take a baby scanning centre as an example.

        Your clinic is based in a certain city so you target your ad to:

        • Females aged between 18 and 45 (the most likely pregnancy ages)
        • Live in the city your clinic operates in
        • Has joined groups or 'likes' pregnancy related pages
        Your Ad is now targetted.

        With the right copy Pregnant woman (although not actively searching for you at the time) can be intrigued enough to click through to your site (or FB page if that is where you want them to go).

        It then comes down to how well your site/page converts.

        So......

        Yes the conversion rates will differ between FB ads and Google Ads. Some ads perform better on FB and some on Google Ads. They both work and if they are producing an effective ROI for you then run both.

        Question

        What did you do to make the £130k from FB? Ads or other means? Either way you were advertising in some way and just proves that FB, if done correctly can make money for you or your clients if you work with clients.

        Riz

        Originally Posted by JamesJeffery View Post

        @Riz yes I have tested. I'm going to bite the hand that feeds me here but I've made over £130,000 on Facebook in the past 6-7 months.

        People are missing the point here. Why is there so much "Google Vs. Facebook" hype. The only thing they have in common is they are both competing for the #1 traffic rank.

        And with all the hype people are easily mislead.

        Facebook is a great communication tool with added benefits such as Games and viral promotion tools. Yes you can promote your business with Facebook, but people won't use Facebook to search for your business. You need an active website to generate traffic to your Facebook page/group.

        It's the same as Facebooks new email. I've read a lot about it, but it's not going to change email marketing. And frankly, who is going to change their 5-10 year old hotmail account for a Facebook email? It will be one of those email addresses that people have, but never use. I can see it now.

        People rely on Google and need it.

        Who remembers Faceparty, Bebo, MySpace .... and who thinks something new won't come along to replace Facebook?

        There is very little in terms of "new" that Facebook can do.

        They have the world in their hands ... now they just have to keep them there and keep them entertained.

        Edit: Let me quickly add ...

        When you use Facebook do you notice the ads? Or have you become oblivious to them? But when you search Google ... do you notice the ads? The first place I look on Google is rank1, rank 2, rank3, ads. It's rare that I won't check the ads when searching for something like "SP1200 repairs UK" (if any ads exist).
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        • Profile picture of the author Luis Medilo
          Is it just me or am I clicking more Facebook ads than Google ads?
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      • Profile picture of the author Eric Lorence
        Originally Posted by JamesJeffery View Post


        Who remembers Faceparty, Bebo, MySpace .... and who thinks something new won't come along to replace Facebook?

        There is very little in terms of "new" that Facebook can do.

        They have the world in their hands ... now they just have to keep them there and keep them entertained.
        The same could be said of Google ...
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        • Profile picture of the author Riz
          Lol! Yes and only the best will survive

          Well as IM'ers we work with what is working NOW. In the fast changing environment that IM is we adapt to the changes and move on.

          At the moment both Google and Facebook are working well for IM'ers. Ride the wave and if change occurs adapt with it.

          Riz

          Originally Posted by Eric Lorence View Post

          The same could be said of Google ...
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  • Profile picture of the author Jayzee
    No doubt Facebook is surpassing Google...But we must remember that Google was also at top. They might be thinking over this...Maybe they will come up with a new solution. Google has a new software called Google Gogle, Have you heard of it?

    It is a software which identifies any type of camera picture! Does Facebook has it? Facebook is good at social networking but Google makes unique softwares for us. Tough competition han?!
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  • Profile picture of the author Silas Hart
    I can get Google to direct better converting traffic than I can Facebook. I've tried a bunch of different methods, but my results on Facebook haven't been too amazing. Ive built up discussions and stuff about the products, but nothing I am say was worth the effort or money.

    In the future when I am trying to establish more of a brand where the intention is to be remembered and not just directly convert, but right now FB isn't replacing Google for my businesses.
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  • Profile picture of the author shuvo
    I see it in different views.If you want targeted traffic then you can buy this traffic easily from facebook.I strongly believe search engine like google traffic will be valuable than facebook.Because people who want to buy a product will search for it first in google not facebook.
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  • Profile picture of the author techbx
    This is the way I like to think about it.

    If I woke up with a nasty rash on my arm and wanted to look for a cream that made it stop itching. Where would I look for info on that? Google or Facebook?

    Google.
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  • Profile picture of the author paulie888
    A lot of assumptions on your part there. You talk about traffic not converting because people view it as a nuisance - in your mind it may be so, but that does not mean everyone will respond the same way.

    If this were truly the case, why are people running profitable campaigns that make thousands (even millions) of dollars on platforms like Pay Per View advertising (you'd view it as an annoying pop-up that has no business being there) or large scale Media Buys (you'd see those banners as an unnecessary and distracting diversion)?

    Without truly testing an ad platform, you cannot categorically state that it doesn't work. How would you know? What you think has absolutely no bearing on how the general majority responds to it.

    So reserve your opinions to yourself, and don't pass judgment on something unless you can show us empirical statistics that prove it.

    Paul
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    • Profile picture of the author Riz
      James has tested it

      Originally Posted by JamesJeffery View Post

      @Riz yes I have tested. I'm going to bite the hand that feeds me here but I've made over £130,000 on Facebook in the past 6-7 months.
      Originally Posted by paulie888 View Post

      A lot of assumptions on your part there. You talk about traffic not converting because people view it as a nuisance - in your mind it may be so, but that does not mean everyone will respond the same way.

      If this were truly the case, why are people running profitable campaigns that make thousands (even millions) of dollars on platforms like Pay Per View advertising (you'd view it as an annoying pop-up that has no business being there) or large scale Media Buys (you'd see those banners as an unnecessary and distracting diversion)?

      Without truly testing an ad platform, you cannot categorically state that it doesn't work. How would you know? What you think has absolutely no bearing on how the general majority responds to it.

      So reserve your opinions to yourself, and don't pass judgment on something unless you can show us empirical statistics that prove it.

      Paul
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      • Profile picture of the author paulie888
        Originally Posted by Riz View Post

        James has tested it
        Yes, and I think he contradicts himself by showing that he has made a significant sum of money with Facebook. It can't be that bad of an ad platform if he's made that much over the last 6-7 months, can it?

        Paul
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  • Profile picture of the author joelraitt
    Well...with so many hundreds of millions on Facebook...And hundred of millions using Google...they are the same people on the sites! You can just target the same users in a different way....they are the same people...just in a different mind set at the time!
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  • Profile picture of the author Slin
    I've bought stuff advertised to me on Facebook. So it definitely works.
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    • Profile picture of the author paulie888
      Originally Posted by Slin View Post

      I've bought stuff advertised to me on Facebook. So it definitely works.
      Exactly my point, so this means there are actually people out there who are paying attention to these Facebook ads (gasp!)
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  • Profile picture of the author JonMills
    lol i hear you bro

    Yep its one thing for a place to get traffic another for that traffic to be there to engage with ads lol

    Most of the time people are poking each other, stalking people,, viewing photos or talking about how important there lives are ...

    I have used facebook ads and they arent all that!
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  • Profile picture of the author inconf
    I would suggest do what works for you, google ads work for me but they are expensive, i have used the same ads on FB with little or no success even though they appear to be more targeted. The issue is that as others have stated, people socialise on FB, they probably dont even notice adverts! Consumers are used to seeing and clicking on ads in google, and therefore if you have the right niche, the targeted KW's then you should see a return on your investment.

    Use a FB fan page or group for your product or website, you can use a FB button on your site, you can use places like fiverr to generate traffic to your fan page etc.
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  • Profile picture of the author Chris Munch
    Facebook's advertising will generally convert less than Google, especially when you consider it from ad views vs. purchases, no doubt about it.

    However that is reflected in the price you pay for traffic, it is considerably less, especially considering the platform is relatively new and a bit more difficult to use and scale compared to Adwords, and fewer people who have mastered it long term.

    Facebook's targeting is also very good, you can practically almost target down to an individual (someone told me they put a joke ad up that only Mark Zuckerburg could see about a year or so ago).

    This video is a great intro into Facebook advertising:
    Making Money With Facebook Advertising – ShoeMoney Show
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    • Profile picture of the author Devid Farah
      I totally agree.
      More page views doesn't necessarily mean a better place to put your ad... like you mentioned, people do not come to Facebook to find products, they come to socialize.
      I would be interested to see statistics on whether an ad gets more clicks from Google or Facebook, not if it just gets more "views", which doesn't necessarily mean the user even glanced at it.
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  • Profile picture of the author QuinNguyen
    Originally Posted by JamesJeffery View Post

    I was going to blog this, until I realized I no longer have a blog.

    Everyone seems to be hyping about the recent news: "Facebook traffic has 'officially' passed Google!" ... does this mean Facebook is thee place to be spending your money, promoting your products and collecting your traffic? Maybe. Maybe not. But in terms of SEO and PPC I think Google still has the overall power.

    I've never really seen Facebook as a worthy ad platform. Unless you are promoting something for free, or something that's trending, people do not want to part with their money.

    Users on Facebook are not there to find your product. They are there to socialize, catch up with family and friends, send a few messages and probably play a few games. Ads on Facebook are a nuisance to most users more than anything. It's very hit and miss.

    Compare this to Google. Google is a search engine, people go their to search for what they want. When ads appear on Google they are very relevant. The advert is a possible solution to their problem.

    I know a lot of people will say that Facebook's ad platform is much better than Google's because you can narrow down your target audience, but you have to understand Facebook is a totally different entity. It's like comparing an apple to an orange.

    When you're narrowing down your target audience you have to ask yourself is your audience really interested in your product/offer or are you guessing they are because they are middle aged, single parents who live in a poor estate in comparison to your audience searching Google for "cheap baby monitors".

    Lets move on to the topic of traffic.

    The recent hype tells us Facebook has more page views than Google. How are they comparing page views? I have a feeling they are aggregating all page views and not unique page views which makes the comparison useless.

    I hit Facebook 10-15 times a day. I hit Google about 5 times a day on average. As an advertiser, I'd be more interested in how many times a person uses Google a day. The low numbers mean nothing.

    When I use Facebook its to read a message, update my status, check my pages. I'm not looking to buy anything. When I use Google I'm looking for something and possibly would part with cash depending on what I am searching for.

    Also, a lot of people use Facebook from their mobile when away from the computer. Which would also account for the increase in traffic.

    To conclude, just because Facebook has more traffic than Google don't assume the traffic is of any quality.
    Well written. We also have to know that google is a search engine. It will never be outrank by anyone.
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    • Profile picture of the author KenJ
      If you have a well established sales process you will already KNOW who your customers are.

      Facebook allows you to target those buyers precisely.

      For those of us marketing to "Amateur Hangliders over the age of 60" this is a great opportunity.

      For others who market to "people who want more money" It might not work so well

      Kenj
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  • Profile picture of the author MsMikayla
    I personally don't use Facebook when I'm looking to buy something. If I need a book I Google. Old DVD? Google.

    However, Facebook ads do have their way of getting your attention when you're at your most vulnerable especially if you are a complete sociall applications addict. I was busy chopping down trees in Ravenwood Fair when to the left of my screen an ad popped up for this item I've been looking for. It's like pop ups but not as annoying.

    Like what most people are saying, apples to oranges.
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  • Profile picture of the author Dani723
    It entirely depends on your niche.
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    • Profile picture of the author Aussie_Al
      I have used both FB ads and Google ads - at least for my niches I can get cheaper ads and better converting Traffic through Google as opposed to Facebook
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  • Profile picture of the author bdm
    Great discussion.

    I have to agree with @buxnut

    Google and Facebook are two completely different beasts. There really is no point debating which one is better for PPC. I believe the smart marketer with a decent product/service will utilize both methods.

    One marketer may have great success with Google while the other hits a home run with FB. At the end of the day they both make money.

    I use both extensively, sure each has it's advantages and disadvantages, all depending on what you are marketing. If you are an affiliate marketer, you will have an easier time with FB in terms of compliance (although FB is getting tougher all the time in this department).

    That's my 2 cents...
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  • Profile picture of the author VictorBlack
    I will judge slowly... I really don't know that Facebook as more real traffic than Google. The Black Hatters seem to be very happy with their new software programs which automatically create hundreds of Facebook pages per day. They claim it is the reason for the 3000% increase per week in Spambook memberships in countries that don't have food, freedom, or 2G cellphones, much less widespread computer usage.

    I'm not saying it's not true. It is certainly possible that the company that hires more creative, innovative people than most any other in the world, pays them incredibly well, fosters an environment of teamwork, achievement, and self-worth might be topped by Spambook, which can't even stick to one set of internal rules, and which consumers think of as entertainment but generally don't take seriously... After all, anything is possible.

    But for the moment, this seems like the same sort of tricks that the Nonline world play, allowing the marketers to spam each other, timing some PR that boasts about not only your traffic but your growth, and smiling while your stocks go up because the advertisers are jumping on board even as you raise the prices.

    What is both cute and terrifying is that the same trick is played time and time again and nobody believes the golden goose will ever die... many times it is dead before anyone realizes, like the codfish that made the USA the mega-economy it is, like the thousands of other great business ideas that are murdered with unsustainable business practices.

    Even now the article marketers say that it is the best method of good online advertising and many I have spoken with believe that it will never die, and nobody realizes the harm that the PLRers and the Spinners are annoying the consumers, which it all falls on in the end... when I have conversations like I did this morning with normal, every day people and they are complaining that too many articles are almost the same these days, throwing away the rest of the magazine without reading them...

    OK that's my rant. Maybe Facebook really is topping Google, but I wouldn't bet my money on it staying that way for long. Maybe I'm wrong, but when I look to the pattern of human behavior throughout history, I seriously doubt it.
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