Search Engines as Leeches on the Web
Jakob Nielsen is a web usability guru who maintains useit.com. I find his free "Alertbox" articles are consistently insightful, but today's Alertbox really surprised me. In it, he explains how relying on search engine advertising as part of a business model is not a long term solution because the nearly "perfect competition" that the internet affords ensures that all profits will be swallowed by the seach engines themselves. His main answer is to reinvest focus on keeping customers, and gives a few examples of how to use technology to do this including newsletters, request marketing, discussion groups and communities, newsfeeds, and possibly even extending your reach into pervasive devices (Palm, Blackberry, etc).
As I read it, I couldn't stop thinking that it's all about adopting the ClueTrain Manifesto, at last in part; getting out there more and engaging customers, contributing to community wherever you can find it, and creating community where you can't.
GreyDuck can help with all of these... especially as it relates to understanding collaboration and leveraging technology to embrace it. Call us at (763) 420-2570 to talk about how we can help!