Commercial Leaked Prior To Airing

Techcrunch posted the new Ask 3D commercial yesterday, several hours before it was suppose to be aired last night. The new commercial features a guy singing, "I got what I'm looking for," with women dancing behind him. It then splashes the keyword phrase "chicks with swords" at the end. So I did a search on that keyword phrase but ended up a bit disappointed, expecting something more. In any event, I wonder how the commercial was leaked early. Here it is: [...] The $100 Million Brand

IAC to spend $100 mln on Ask brand in 2007: Diller from the Washington Post reports that is going spend $100 million on branding this year. IAC chairman Barry Diller, whose company owns, said We have a number of ways to tell people about Ask, its tools, and why it should be used (and) why you should make a change from Google. The branding material includes TV spots and billboards featuring The Algorithm campaign which has been receiving some nice buzz already. Ask CEO Jim Lanzone told the Washington Post that the marketing budget would also go towards development a [...]

Now Starring: The Algorithm – To Focus On Ranking System In New TV Ads Hopes Ads Compute to Buzz from the Wall Street Journal reports that is launching a new TV and web ad campaign today, to try to generate buzz about the search engine. The article says this ad campaign is "gearing up to a relaunch of the site and the debut of its new search technology later this year," which I assume is the Edison project. The campaign will focus around the word "algorithm." From the story: People slip the word into casual conversation with phrases such as "Do you have a lame algorithm?" or "I was all algorithm-ed out".... In one spot, a boy asks h [...]

WSJ Covers’s “Information Revolution” Ad Campaign

Ask.Com's 'Revolt' Risks Costly Clicks from the Wall Street Journal weighs in on the guerrilla marketing campaign we covered last month, especially focusing on the negative comments that have appeared on the associated web site. The article also highlighting the television commercials now airing. I've seen these myself on TV here, and a video clip below give you a taste. Writes the WSJ about the campaign's web site: The online discussion has been dominated by people complaining they've been misled. "I thought this may be an informative Web site about how information is used o [...]

Ask Ramps Up The Mystery Ads

First in the UK, Ask rolled out a guerilla marketing campaign aimed at sparking an "information revolution" to choose Ask over Google. Now a different yet still mysterious campaign is underway in the US by Ask. Valleywag reports about billboards on Highway 101 between San Francisco and San Jose saying "The Algorithm Killed Jeeves" [Ask's old mascot, when it was called Ask Jeeves] and "The Algorithm Is From Jersey" [where Ask's Teoma algorithm was developed, and where it continues to have a research center." Valleywag has pictures of the billboards. I like [...]

Ask On Ad Campaign: Fun Way To Wake The “Sleep Searchers”

I wrote earlier about Ask's guerrilla marketing campaign now underway to raise awareness of the search engine in the UK. I've now talked with Ask CEO Jim Lanzone, who explained more about how the campaign is designed to unfold. He said it's all meant in good fun, not to be negative about Google, but rather to wake "sleep searchers" up to the choices they have in search. And I have to agree -- when you understand more about what's planned, it is pretty funny. Ask is no stranger to television campaigns. The company has run them several times before, including a big one last year. Bu [...]

Ask’s Guerrilla Marketing Campaign Against Google

Via Valleywag, appears to be running a guerrilla marketing campaign in the UK designed to seem like a grassroots effort against a Google monopoly in search. The picture above, taken by Ben Werdmuller, shows one of the campaign's ads on the London Underground. The ad directs you to the Information Revolution site, on a domain owned by Ask's ad agency Profero, as the Curverider blog sleuthed out. Curverider also points out that a search on Google over at Ask's UK site brings up an ad for the Information Revolution site: What's the site's pitch? You found us. Nice one. N [...]’s CEO, Jim Lanzone, Calls Yahoo Paid Inclusion “Hypocritical”

In a comment left at the Stepforth blog, Jim Lanzone,'s CEO, has said that he considers paid inclusion a "dis-service". Jim explains that he finds it "hypocritical to charge for something we need to do anyway," i.e. crawl the web to find quality pages to present to the searcher. In addition, Mr. Lanzone explains that it "blurs the line" between "paid content and editorial content" making it hard for the searcher to possibly trust the search results. Lanzone does not go as far to accuse Yahoo of skewing the results in favor of paid inclusion results. Lanzone does say that "Paid Incl [...]

Google Ink Sends New Google Pen

First had some fun with Google earlier this month, joking about how their Google pen "flatlined" and ran out of ink during a crucial meeting. Now Google gets in on the joke in good spirit, sending Ask a new pen along with a letter discussing the Google Pen's "redundant" architecture.'s Google Pen Service Restored from the Blog share a picture of the pen and the letter, which offers Google's apology for the pen failure. The letter reads: We noted your suboptimal experience with our Google pen and are thus pleased to send you -- at no charge -- a re [...]

Search Love Triangle: Wants Those Looking For On

It's not new for search engines to advertise on other search engines. We wrote about doing that on Google earlier this year, and that was just the latest in a long line of examples over the years. But we've never heard of a search engine advertising for those seeking another search engine on a third search engine until now. The screenshot above explains it all. It's a search for on Google, bringing up an ad from Ask -- going after Yahoo users who are searching for Yahoo at Google. It's a pretty popular query, actually. I wrote recently about how Yahoo is one [...]

Google’s Pen Flatlines For Ask, Parody Of Recent Capacity Problems

The Blog made me laugh with their The Latest Google Flatline post. In that entry, writes about the recent Google capacity issues reported at Techcrunch and describes how it is so true. In fact, they say that when they were using a Google pen, and it "ran out of ink without warning." They described the flat-lining of the Google pen to cause "considerable inconvenience and loss of data." But in fact, last week, Google noticed several issues with uptime on several of their products. Techcrunch sums many of them up including these reports: Google Analytics being down Google [...]

Microsoft Live & Yahoo Push For Firefox Users, Plus Revisiting The IE7 Search Battle

Today I noticed trying to get me to search with it in Firefox. Then Yahoo did the same thing. So I guess a new round of "let's change search defaults" is going on within Firefox. That seemed a good excuse for a revisit how the various search engines are trying to pull us as their default choices in both Internet Explorer 7 and Firefox. Back in October, I did a big fat article looking at the state of how search worked in Internet Explorer 7 and how search providers were trying to suck you into making them your default search choice. It was Firefox stuff that got me going to [...]

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