Macro-Economics and Macro-Emotions

Another interesting article I ran into while cleaning out my inbox. Biometric monitoring research firm Innerscope tracked people’s emotions through vests that capture heartrates and other signals of emotional engagement while they were watching Super Bowl Ads. The objective: to see which ads got the biggest response from people. The results were interesting. The winners were Career Builder and Cash4Gold.

People are scared poopless by the economy and it’s impacting the ads we pay attention and react to. I’ve written before on the macro-emotional trends that dictate everything from the stores we shop at to the searches we launch. And now, it’s even edged in on the Super Bowl. What is interesting is that this is a self perpetuating trend. The economic news scares us, we spend less, the economy gets worse because no one is spending, the news gets worse… well, you get the idea.

Also saw CITI Analyst  Mark Mahaney at Covario’s InflectionPoint Summit in San Diego, who gave us an update on macro economic trends. The short version is..more bad news. He did have a silver lining for search marketers though, which lines up with what we’ve been seeing. Budgets from other channels are migrating into search. Mark gave us a quick and admitedly non scientific calculation of the categories most at risk, Yellow Pages, Print and TV, showed a total potential of $120 billion up for grabs. Of course, total migration is ridiculous. Search doesn’t work unless something is creating awareness, which creates search inventory. But still, that’s $120 B in ad budget that’s going to be scrutinized pretty carefully over the next year or two. It does make you think how much of that might leak into search.

Along the same lines, just got a preliminary glimpse at the SEMPO State of the Search Market Preliminary results. What we’re seeing seems to support Mark’s theory. Can’t go into specifics right now, but if you’re at SMX in Santa Clara next week we’ll be sharing some preliminary findings. I think I’m scheduled on Day One for that session. Drop by if you have a chance.

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