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Teoma is all that. They've got sound grounding and solid integrity, and I'd personally love to see them move full speed ahead into the arena as major players.
<== Personal opinion:
No, not at all irrelevant because I believe that I represent the average female searcher from a subjective and highly relevant type of perspective.
Jeeves himself is not at all by any means a handsome dude, to say the very least, and I believe that *He* himself could be a possible detriment to the company's growth from a marketing perspective.
Sorry folks, but I'm a lady and that's how I see it - and I speak from personal "taste." If I do, so do others - and let's face it, the female searching audience is a significant portion of the surfing public and Ask's demographic audience as a whole as well.
If anyone wants to argue with me, let it not be a male because *they* simply haven't got adequate perspective. If there's counterpoint, let it come from another lady, if any care to step up and be heard.
"Jeeves" needs an Estee Lauder "Make-Over" at the very least; a Beverly Hills plastic surgeon at best. The dude is just plain butt-ugly, he flat out needs help. Trust me. He does. I know these things - all women do. And "Jeeves" needs us a lot more than we need him! ;)
It's simply a case of misguided, unexploited image management. Fix that, get on the Cluetrain, and Bob's your uncle!
Ok. From another woman. I like Jeeves' look. He's the everyman done up. He's kinda goofy, but he's got a good heart. He's always there when you need him, and you know he'll come up with the goods for you. We know he needs us too - and we all like to be needed. He's attainable to the average woman.
He's not some overpumped beefcake who knows he's got us hangin off his every flex.
He's the Ron Jeremy of search.
Ask is not a target for Google. They have their own crawler based search technology and are providing a nice independent revenue stream for Adwords via increased distribution. They would add minimal value for Google.
Ask _may_ have been a target for MSN a while ago but it is clear that Micrsofot are now on the "build not buy" strategy.
As for MSN buying a PPC, who is there to buy? Straight off the top of my head, I would call out (in no particular order) Kanoodle or Enhance or Findwhat or even what is left of Looksmart. But I don't see it happening.
The respective customer bases are too small and they have signed a further extension with Overture to provide those results until 2005 (from memory).
The other big thing, is none of them (from what I know) are based on Microsoft technology. MSN Search will be a showcase for MS technology such as Passport, Hailstorm, Pocket PC compatiable, Smart Tags etc. It will prove to many people that MS technology (the Windows kernal) does belong in a data centre and can scale appropraitely.
Yes, parts of Hotmail are still run on Unix servers but that was a system that was purchased. MS is very big on "eating it's own dogfood" and will not be doing another "Hotmail".
Just my opinon, based on my background of working for and with MS.
Nothing new there. MS have already said they "missed the boat" on Search but were spending the $$s to catch up.
But MS isn't _just_ about search. They have many different businesses and will try to integrate as many of those with search as possible. i.e. Microsoft Content Management Server may provide a search engine friendly version in the next few releases or even provide the option to produce an XML feed.
I don't see them going out for a big buy when they have so many resources at hand to build.
The Ask Jeeves image is horrible.
When you have a domain name like Ask.com why in the world are you branding "Ask Jeeves"? I just don't get it. In my opinion, they need to ditch Jeeves completely and become ask.com.
Ask.com is a marketers dream. I think Ask (Jeeves) is just afraid to drop Jeeves because of all the $ they have spent branding him as the spokesperson. But there comes a time when you just have to let a bad idea die. Jeeves is a bad idea.... and ya... let's face it, he's ugly.
Nike dropped Spike Lee. Ask needs to drop Jeeves.
All I can think when I go there is "mr. belvedere". Yuck.
It'll make a pshychological effect and stir up memories. Plus, it would be a great time to do a survey of what people think.
They could always put jeeves back...it's not like searcher will miss him. They sure will think about him.
Who knows, they could do a, "where in the world is Jeeves" game for $10,000 on IWON.
JeevesGuy....what do you think? for two weeks!
MS is on the record as saying they are rolling their own.
We're not handicapping stocks here, so the main concern around here is traffic to our websites. Stock price valuation and search engine performance values are wide apart.
That said, I think it's highly doubtful that Google will take over AJ... but you never know. And what does it mean if Google takes them over? Not much.
Ask Jeeves is as important as 3-7% traffic. Most people report lower traffic figures for websites that are ranked well in AJ so I'm a bit skeptical about the "official figures."
If the figure of 69% of their revenue comes from Google I would have to guess that a large part of that remaining 31% would have to come from their own featured listing and branded response.
Ask has another year or so on their contract with google. After that contract is expired I would hope Ask would realize they need to take 100% of the revenue from their search listings and no longer do a revenue share with google. This would be great for internet marketers for myself as well (no more searching for remnant keywords that competitors haven't already bought up under their featured listing space)
I don't that is going to happen, at least in the time period indicated. Everything that I hear is that Ask Jeeves is extremely happy with the relationship with Google and has no plans to their own solution out in the short time.
It is early in the morning and I am struggling to remember the exact revenue AJ made from this relationship but it is a major percentage of their entire revenue.
When you have a domain name like Ask.com why in the world are you branding "Ask Jeeves"? I just don't get it. In my opinion, they need to ditch Jeeves completely and become ask.com
Very Well said, kanetrain. I was wondering the same a couple of days ago. They even have aj.com :( And imho, they should buy out lycos usa.
If this butler told you about 10 places to get the widget parts, and the only reason he told you about them, is that he gets a kickback from each of them, not because they have the best widgets, or the best prices, how would you react? After going thru all 10 of them, your employee starts to mention fully qualified places to buy the same widget parts for less money, (because of not having to pay kickbacks to the butler), how would you react.
This butler does not work for me, he must be working for the advertisers who pay him, Personally, I would send the butler packing, and find a more honest one.
Whom do you trust. We are talking a page of pay per click advertising before showing any search engine results.