I’m a pretty heavy Twitter user, with the wealth of my communication going there lately, rather than to this blog. This is not due to any aversion to blogging, but more because of the time constraint I’m under right now. Apparently Gmail knows this, as any good email program/big brother should, and it recommends appropriate ads for me on a regular basis.
Today’s recommended ad had me doing a double take:
Clicking this takes you to this Twitter user’s page:
Looks like he’s running some sort of contest to increase his Twitter followers. God, I hate that… Anyway, if you take a look at the link on his account, you’ll see his actual ad’s landing page (not linked because I don’t want to contribute to this guy’s Google juice): http://www.hexatrackdotcom/
So, the story is that this guy has found the Revolution in Search Engine Marketing and wants to let people in on the amazing news. Of course, membership is limited (damn the rules!) and you need to get in on this by some vague date in the near future because after that the price is going to go up. Whether or not they throw in a few ShamWow!s remains to be seen…
Apparently, they recognized that their audience was people who are looking to Uncover the “honeypots” of affiliate marketing. What’s not apparent is why they thought that Twitter sign-up ads would appeal to this crowd. I’m thinking they were too lazy/too uncreative to come up with good ad copy and they thought this was a very easy way to lend legitimacy to their product/personal brand (ie Twitter put up an ad and used this cool guy as their example Twitter page).
Do they really think that affiliate marketers are that stupid (ie marketers who can’t tell the difference between an ad for Twitter and an ad for a particular user’s page)? I’ve yet to meet an affiliate marketer that wasn’t savvy enough to see right through this. What I have met, in affiliate marketing and internet marketing in general, is lots of people who are interested in raking in easy cash and will shell out $50-$500 for that get-rich-quick, answer to world hunger, guaranteed to lose money, affiliate marketer tool. It appears to me that affiliate marketers aren’t really their target. The people they hope to fool with this ad will be ignorant enough to think that their product has value as well.
Doesn’t Google have some ‘branding’ guidelines that would take care of this? Where would a user go to report this?