As pointed out on Bruceclay.com — Ask.com thinks you’re an idiot — Ask can sometimes be an irritating company. I like the new Ask3D interface, and they’re doing a lot of good things in the search arena. However, when it comes to how Ask is marketing itself, I’m completely baffled.
In the UK they have been running an “Information Revolution” campaign, employing a font reminiscent of Soviet-era dissident ‘samizdat’ typescript. I wrote about this in a column for the Ariadne magazine, and things don’t look any better on the other side of the Atlantic.
In the US, first we had the “Chicks with swords” video (which mercifully doesn’t appear to have made it over to the UK – perhaps Ask thinks we’ve suffered enough), and now they’ve released another one with a woman searching for a gentleman by the name of Kato Kaelin (we don’t know who he is in the UK, and I’m hoping it stays that way).
Admittedly they are also running a couple of other adverts that focus on ‘The Algorithm’ but these are also vague and obscure. Lisa Barone over at Bruceclay is rather more forthright, calling Ask the “king of failed advertising … depicting their users as vapid idiot searchers.”
I really can’t disagree. How hard is it to come up with a campaign that just says “We do search. We can find what you’re looking for quickly and easily?”
Ask has a great search engine; will someone in the company tell that to their advertising team please?
Opinions expressed in the article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land.