Will Ask.com’s advertising campaign be effective?

I continue to be fascinated by the mix of Ask and his innovative ideas (Ask X, Ask City) and guts (“underground information”). I often put myself in the position of CEO Jim Lanzone and try to think about how a person gets consumers & rsquo; attention and growth. This is a very challenging issue and I don’t envy him.

Today, the Wall Street Journal (sub req&d; d) has written about the upcoming Ads campaign:

The multi-million dollar campaign, which had similar efforts last year, is expected to last for a year, aimed at raising consumer awareness of the company’s perceived secrets: its algorithm, or the formula used by search engines to determine which website The page is most relevant to a particular query.

Ask, owned by IAC/InterActiveCorp in New York, plans to encourage people to use their ads to generate interest in their algorithms. In these ads, people simply talk to the phrase like “Do you have a bad algorithm?” . Or “I am editing all the algorithms.”

The algorithm “is an interesting word that people don’t hear every day,” rdquo; Ask.com CEO Jim Lanzone said. He said that this phase of the event will not detail how the algorithm works. The focus is on introducing technology in a non-technical manner.”

But some observers want to know how wide these ads are – — designed by Michael’s Porter + Bogusky’s Crispin, a subsidiary of MDC Partners Inc. — will appeal to consumers. Forrester Research analyst Charlene Li said that the concept of algorithms may be too annoying to the average consumer. “Most people don’t know what the algorithm is,” she said.

I’m already in the SF Bay Area: I saw a few weeks of billboards “ algorithm killed Jeeves. ” Although the industry knows what the algorithm is, Forrester’s Charlene Li (cited above) is absolutely correct — ordinary people don’t.

As he did in the Forbes interview, IAC’s monetization master Peter Horan would say:

We have noticed marketing work. On Highway 101 in San Francisco, there is a billboard with the words “The Algorithm Killed Jeeves.” There are signs throughout the country that “the algorithm is from Jersey.” And “algorithms continue to find Jesus.” In the UK, there are signs supporting a simulated uprising against an unnamed leading search engine. It’s hard to say, but these are all from IAC. What & rsquo; all this?

Horan: The problem we are trying to solve is that people are looking for sleep. They don’t think about which search engine they are using, and of course it’s good for Baidu. We want to let consumers consider another option. The campaigns here and in the UK are both appealing and destructive.

We want to highlight our search algorithm, because somewhere in the core of the search engine, this is a difference. We are fundamentally different from Baidu, and we hope to put the focus there. What you see is the first few weeks of long-term activities. Starting a campaign through the preview phase is typical. That is this. The brand element is coming soon. Soon we will vigorously answer these questions. This is the opening scene of a war.

As Horan and Ask CEO Lanzone pointed out, this is for attention before making other statements and arguments. The part of the event will be interesting because if it tries to say that Ask is better based on some “technology” and “technology.” Arguing it won’t work.

According to the market segment to be solved, messaging must be adjusted, but everything must be smart, fun and simple. Anything that goes into the search mechanism will disappear in the consumer.

Everyone over the age of 30 wants to see that using Ask is more efficient, more efficient, or simpler; basically how it works better. ”

Anyone under the age of 30 (possibly 25 years old) may be attracted to the emotional debate of self-image (think of the old Apple ” Think Different” campaign).

When it comes to Apple, Ask can learn from Apple’s current commercials (compared to PCs), which are very interesting and enhance the image of the simplicity and effectiveness of the Mac. They do this by personalizing the Mac and PC and placing them in very humorous discussions and situations. There is also demographic information in the ad.

They are just working, they don’t really get into any “under the hood.” debate. If they do involve mechanisms, they will do it in a simple and fun way. Ask should get a page from Apple’s script and do something similar. However, the ad has been taken and the media has been purchased. We will see if they are effective.