Posted by: montegroup | January 14, 2009

Craig Newmark on Web 2.0, Politics and Obama

Really good video from Craig Newmark, the founder of Craigslist, on Web 2.0 and the role the internet may play in politics and especially for the Barack Obama government.

By the way, Happy 2009.

Posted by: montegroup | November 13, 2008

I finally joined Twitter

okay. First, sorry for not writing lately but things have just been crazy busy. I have now actually set aside 45min every 2 days to dedicate to the blog.

– I finally joined Twitter
– Working on a launching a new corporate site
– Been working heavily with WordPress and currently working on an implementation for a client
– Working with Adobe flash encoder for a client
– Getting new ski gear this Saturday (gotta have some fun)

Posted by: montegroup | September 5, 2008

Vancouver and Whistler Limousine Site

Over the past couple of months we had the opportunity to work with Vancouver limousine company Pacific Harmony on the development and design of their new web site; one of the key features of the site is the quick quote widget, which allows users to get an idea on costs for the most popular routes. The widget is xml driven, which allows Harmony staff to easily update rates.

Besides the web design, we have worked on an SEO strategy in order to improve organic rankings and drive more traffic and sales for Pacific Harmony.

Some of the limo services include:
Vancouver limousine
Whistler limousine
Wedding limo service

Corporate transportation

So far the site is performing well and business is up with improved organic rankings on Google.

Posted by: montegroup | August 14, 2008

Online Brand Awareness

The question! What is brand awareness and how do we measure it?

The word ‘awareness’ really bugs me; to me it is almost an excuse word for “I’m not really sure how your campaign did, but you got brand exposure”.

I know, there are brand awareness campaigns both offline and online but to really go into a campaign without any success metrics is irresponsible and shows incompetency on the part of the media buyer and perhaps even the client to some degree. But from my point of view most of the responsibility sits with the media buyer or agency.

I may be rambling here but to say that a media buy of 500,000 impressions or less over 4 weeks is brand awareness is misleading.

Another one that gets me is ROS (run of site). “ROS is good for your brand” I hear that statement all the time.

Here is another one… “home page placement tons of impressions and exposure”. Okay fair enough on this one if your Apple or Nike or someone doing a home page take over, but if you’re just buying a few thousand impressions over a short period I would call it an ineffective placement. For one, your frequency is likely going to be very low additionally your CTR (click through rate) is likely to be low as well.

So what do I always here on home page placements “it’s brand awareness”.

Marketers, agencies, media buyers….it is time to be more responsible and measure. Remember, that’s the beauty of online marketing….measurement.

Posted by: montegroup | August 12, 2008

Lonely Planet for iPhone

Lonely Planet for iPhoneThe iPhone hype continues. With the recent launch of the iPhone 3G Lonely Planet took the opportunity to promote its mobile phrasebook Mandarin version.

If you haven’t tried their phrasebook give it a shot….it’s free for limited time.

Click here to go to the download page.

Posted by: montegroup | August 7, 2008

Travelocity Experience Finder

The Travelocity Experience finder is quite hidden as it still in beta mode, but it is very powerful as it gives users the ability to search by experience or theme similar to what Canada Tourism has done.

Besides being able to search by experience, you can also search by Destination and Product Type.

Though the maps under each experience are not great, it does provide users with a sense of location; I think if they could enhance the maps it would really improve the overall user experience.

However the maps found under Tools are fantastic; you are able to overlay the map with Hotels, Activities, Museums and much more.

Another cool feature is the wish list where you can add hotels, activities or vacation packages.

Overall I think Travelocity has done an excellent job with this initiative; from a PMO or DMO perspective there are many ideas that can be taken, such as building a web site that will allow your users to search by experience or incorporating a map that can be overlaid with experiences chosen by the user to having a wish list – the one thing I would add is a viral component where users can share their wish list with family or friends.

Posted by: montegroup | August 6, 2008

Digital Video Ad Serving Template (VAST)

Just last week IAB announced the release of VAST; the goal is to standardize the communication protocol between servers and video players.

Digital Video Ad Serving Template will allow compnies to build digital video players and ad servers that have the same interfaces and speak the same standard language.

One of the key goals is that video players will attempt to align impression tracking with the IAB Digital Video Impression Guidelines.

Click here to learn more about VAST and to download documentation.

Posted by: montegroup | August 5, 2008

Going Green and SEO

Everything seems to be ‘green’ nowadays; it seems that every brand is trying to do something to be ‘green’.

Going green helps a brand’s profile by staying current with what’s hot and top of mind for consumers but it can also be good for SEO.

For example just a couple of days ago launched their ‘green’ section where they provide users with green tips from green living, to driving green and buying green products.

If done correctly, this strategy will help your profile and should help drive some traffic to your site.

Read More…

Posted by: montegroup | August 4, 2008

Summer Time in Vancouver

Okay, I wish I could say that because of summer I haven’t written for over 7 weeks…..but in reality it’s been work; too much of it.

Things have been crazy at CTC and my internet marketing company is also doing well.

But yes, summer time in Vancouver is amazing.

My regular posts will start tomorrow – I am actually booking time in my calendar to write.

Posted by: montegroup | June 10, 2008

Google Market Share US and UK – May 2008

Wow! What a last 3-4 weeks…things have just been crazy and haven’t really had a chance to write; things aren’t any better now but will try to make time on the ride back home.

I think we all know that Google is the dominant player in the search engine world and stats back this up.

Here are the latest numbers from Hitwise, for the last four weeks ending May 31, 2008.

Search Market Share, US Market:
– Google 68.3%
– Yahoo 20%
– MSN 5.9%
– Ask 4.2%

These are very powerful numbers, where nearly 70% of all US searches where powered by Google.

Search Market Share, UK Market:
– Google 87% ( and
– Yahoo 4%
– MSN 3.7%
– Ask 3%

For Google, this is an increase of 12% as compared to May 2007.

Not too take anything away from the other search engines, but these numbers really highlight the importance of a good SEO strategy and Pay per click campaign on Google.

Of course you don’t want to put all your eggs in Google’s basket, but if your resources are limited I would look at your ROI based on time and effort spent per campaign and perhaps only stick to one engine until you’re up and running comfortably.

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