What Would You Ask Steve Ballmer About Bing, Microsoft & Search?

Next week, on March 2, I’ll be interviewing Steve Ballmer on stage at our SMX West search marketing conference. This will be Ballmer’s first-ever appearance as a search event. I’m working of my own list of search-specific question to put to him, but I’m also looking for ideas from others. Got a good question you’d like to see put to him? Let me know. There are a variety of ways to give me suggestions:

For more about the show, see our other post today, SMX West Next Week in Silicon Valley – Register Today! for a short rundown on key information. Also see the agenda and my guided tour of what to expect, Why You Should Attend SMX West 2010: A Personal Preview, From Danny Sullivan

Related Topics: Channel: Industry | Features: General | SEM Industry: Search Marketing Expo - SMX


About The Author: is a Founding Editor of Search Engine Land. He’s a widely cited authority on search engines and search marketing issues who has covered the space since 1996. Danny also serves as Chief Content Officer for Third Door Media, which publishes Search Engine Land and produces the SMX: Search Marketing Expo conference series. He has a personal blog called Daggle (and keeps his disclosures page there). He can be found on Facebook, Google + and microblogs on Twitter as @dannysullivan.

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  • http://www.googleandblog.com/ Michael Martin


    You have to ask on an update to the timeline of Bing powering Yahoo search rather than just late 2010.

    For the Windows 7 Phone does he feel showing it this early will allow Android/iPhone to easily leapfrog it by the end of the year.

    Also he stated he won’t remove the $7-25 licensing fee to manufacturers while saying there is a hidden cost to it being given away for free (Android) – ask him to elaborate since Google’s obvious cost is increased advertising exposure and perhaps personal information.

  • Stupidscript

    I would like to know: Why does Microsoft even bother with search?

    1) Their core business was once operating systems;
    2) Their core business has now evolved into productivity software;
    3) Services like search have never been their strong suit; and
    4) Both their operating systems and their productivity suites need a ton of work, but could one day re-establish themselves as the dominant players if they received the commitment they require.

    So, why did Microsoft bother to try and get into search in the first place, when (a) their infrastructure is built around software sales, not service, and (b) they have so much left to do with the products they have been selling for their entire existence?

    It seems irrational to start competing in search when the business model is so lousy compared to software sales, and when they have never been able to successfully compete in the services arena before. It has always seemed like a “ooh, that grass looks greener over there” type of mis-direction for Microsoft, rather than one that is logically inferred from their history and production strengths.

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