alert) is fascinating in so many ways. There are three areas where
it will revolutionize the Internet.
Virtually unlimited e-mail storage
searching of archived e-mail
I wrote an
article recently titled “Google
Gmail Vs. Hysterical Privacy Lunatics,” in response to the
tremendous outpouring of suspicion regarding the way Gmail works. I
wrote this without having an actual account, so you can imagine how
excited I was when TMC’s own columnist
Robert Hashemian forwarded me a Gmail invitation. I recently
received the Gmail account
email@example.com, which I post freely on the internet for all to
see. Not only will you, my much appreciated reader see my address, but
so will thousands or even millions of web scraping bots looking for
e-mail addresses to spam.
Many of us
in the trade press have a dilemma. We want to be accessible to our
readers and others but at the same time, we need to stop ourselves from
the onslaught of Viagra and mortgage spam flooding our inboxes. I have
noticed other editors shielding us from learning their e-mail address.
Selflessly, I throw mine out there and dare the slimy spammers to take
their best shot.
I have an
ulterior motive of course. I want to see how Google deals with the
menace we know as spam. Spam is a very messy and nasty epidemic and to
date, Google has taken these messy services and cleaned them up. Take
the user interface for example: where as Yahoo’s home page is a lesson
in clutter, Google takes the opposite approach. While most sites display
banner and button ads, Google built its ad revenue based on text ads
(although recently they decided to give banners a whirl). Finally,
Google has always eschewed pop up ads in contrast to so many others. So
I figure Gmail may have a better spam filter than the competition. Time
(and of course, I) will only tell.
back to Gmail. I sent ten messages from my
TMCnet account to my Google free
e-mail service (which by the way, allows accounts to have a gigabyte of
storage). I wanted to see how it would deal with targeting ads to the
content on the page. Google did remarkably well. The ads were well
targeted. VoIP (news
alert) ads appeared with VoIP content, CRM
alert)ads (from a competitor, actually) came up when there was CRM
content and so forth.
This had me
thinking. Google AdWords coupled with Gmail may just be the great
advertising equalizer while bringing down the walls that guard the
barrier for entry. For example, let’s say you are on the New York Times
e-mail list, CNN, or the New York Post. Gmail now makes it possible for
any advertiser to poach other company’s readers. After all, an
advertiser can target e-mail containing any words they wish. Examples
include “New York Times Wall Street Report,” or “Forbes Technology
Report.” Trade newsletters are not exempt so you could poach readers of
the “Customer Interaction Solutions” newsletter for example. Certain
terms in the CRM space can cost more than a few dollars, or even ten
times as much. By targeting e-newsletters, you can reduce your cost of
advertising for a more precise target audience. The theory being, that
it will be relatively inexpensive to buy the keywords relating the above
newsletters in comparison to keywords, such as VoIP.
catches on, it will act as the middle-man allowing advertisers to steal
subscribers from other newsletters. Lexus can steal BMW newsletter
subscribers. Sports Illustrated can steal ESPN newsletter subscribers.
we have been saying that on the internet, your competition is only a
mouse-click away. That really was a figure of speech - until now.
Rich Tehrani is TMC's president. He welcomes your comments.
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