This is a short, well written article by Mike Bioxham published in iMEDIA Connection on Wednesday, Oct 20, 2010. It addresses the human need to seek out information which is good news for marketers!
While humans are hard-wired to seek out information that meets their needs, the search industry will soon need to find creative ways to move beyond basic utility. Take a look at some keen insight that can get you started.
Although digital media and marketing may be relatively new in the scheme of things, the fundamentals of search behavior could not be older or more basic to our collective human nature.
Humans have evolved in part on the basis of their innate curiosity and their inventiveness, which has been fueled by a seemingly insatiable appetite for information and entertainment. We are effectively hard-wired to seek out information that meets our needs and desires -- whether those needs are for food and shelter or for education, news, product reviews, or bargains.
That's the good news for marketers: As a species, we are in "always-receive" mode, whether or not we are also in "send" mode.
The bad news for marketers lies in the fact that there is simply too much information out there that is readily available to us. We have gone far beyond the point where a brand can stand out and make an impression on the basis of a reasonable level of creativity and media spend.
The internet effectively creates a problem at least as great as the opportunities it presents. After all, there is more information available and accessible than anyone could possibly want, need, or have a use for -- let alone navigate.
Without the range of search-related tools and behaviors available to us, finding any particular piece of information would be like trying to find one specific grain of sand in the ever-shifting landscape of the Sahara Desert. Not what one would call the most user-friendly of interfaces.
So it was inevitable that the search industry would be born and that what was originally known as "Jerry and David's Guide to the World Wide Web" in February 1994 would go on to bigger things in the shape of Yahoo and spawn plenty of similar ventures.
Since that time, search has grown up rapidly. While it continues to evolve and grow in response to the evolution of the digital ecosystem to which it is so essential, search in the marketplace has gone a very long way to being established as a part of the marketing mix, with its own specialists and budgets.
While recognizing the outright dominance of the search giants, it is critical to acknowledge that while they are generally defined in terms of how they work, what they do, and how they make money off their share of search, their success is not fundamentally based on the algorithms, software, and server farms that they run on. These things are merely the technological commodities that allow them to play and stay in the game.
Fundamentally their relevance -- and even their success -- is rooted in the human behavior that defines the need for their existence. Naturally, management makes or breaks a company in any space, but the willingness and ability of that management to shape their business around a deep understanding of the attitudes, motivations, needs, and behaviors of their users will be what ensures success going forward. Read this entire article >>