Internationalisation of the Web

Predominently working in anglo-saxon countries you can get lazy into thinking all of these anglo-american companies — media companies, advertisers, producers — are the only players in their industries. 

For years the Internet was in English and the top 3 sites remain Google, Yahoo and MSN on a lot of rankings like Alexa Global Top 500, Quantcast (for the US), and Comscore which shows the strength these companies have online.

Of course some of that large volume to the American sites is also global traffic just to put a spin on it. As MarketingVox pointed out in a posting from last November that 70% of traffic to Google, Microsoft, Yahoo and CNET was from non-US users. For a “domestic site” like Google 79.8% of unique users and 89.1% of pageviews are from non-US users. The stats are from Comscore World Metrix.

But what is more interesting is the rise of global sites — particularly the Asian sites like and If anyone questions whether the Chinese are online, take a look at the current Alexa Movers and Shakers list and see that 6 of the top 20 sites with highest growth or contraction are Chinese. Or which community sites are most successful like Hi-5 in Portugal and Spain, Orkut in Brazil or of course CyWorld in Korea.

We can only hope local companies like, and hold there own. As Elizabeth Van Couvering is pointing out in her Ph.D. Thesis at LSE, as media consumption shifts online if all of the providers of portal content (like Yahoo) and Search results (like Google) use an anglo-american approach, it could have a dramatic impact on the information people actually see.

Did the world change with the MTV generation. Wait until the Google generation hits its stride and we will really find out.

Go Digital – go digital?

If you are targeting teens it isn’t too much of a surprise to see 70% of spending going online.  But other clients are doing blanket statements about “no TV, no Print” — only interactive marketing efforts.    Not tracking reach and frequency, but buzz and engagement.

Nice to see but always makes you nervous.  The press is reporting the YouTube guys managed to make $1 billion in 18 months.  Random people with backgrounds in accountancy are back to pitching their favourite internet ideas like movies — “Its Linked In meets GeoCities.  Should have Facebook virality and Google revenues.”  Really.    Old time Wall Street brokers used to say you knew it was the top of the market when doormen starting giving you stock tips.  Is this the revolution here at last, or the top of the market?

HP Targets Teens With ‘Mind Control’
July 25, 2007
By Brian Morrissey

NEW YORK Hewlett-Packard is launching a back-to-school campaign with a twist: 70 percent of the spending will support online efforts.The shift reverses HP’s ’06 back-to-school spending strategy, when the company earmarked 70 percent of the media outlay for traditional channels. The company is making the change largely because it has broadened its target audience this year from parents buying computers to include teenagers who often drive purchase decisions.

Widgets are widgets?

Can’t say that it is true — but who knows?  Perhaps I’ll be suprised.

 Just because I couldn’t resist the fact it was published by Mr. Steve Bowbrick.  The man who did Internet before people did Internet.  A definition of Widget:

The Benefits Of Mobile (and On-Line) Channels Aren’t Always Obvious To The Advertiser

These are the STL blog notes from a talk I gave at the Telco 2.0 event in London:

We kicked off the workshop with a presentation from the new customer group: the advertiser. John Baker, Managing Partner at Ogilvy Interactive, highlighted several of the factors which would drive adoption of the digital and, especially, mobile channels from the advertiser’s perspective:

  1. Cost – make it cheap (and simple) to advertise
  2. Demonstrate audience growth
  3. Illustrate customer responsiveness through this channel – i.e. show a clear ROI to advertisers
  4. Be patient! There is a need for cultural change amongst advertisers. John highlighted this as a key barrier from the demand side for on-line and mobile advertising because brand managers and media buyers are measured and rewarded using metrics, such as Customer Reach, which do not easily square with the digital channels (where the focus is on engagement and interactivity).

Responding to these, John then suggested four areas of focus for Telco operators to add value:

  1. Make it easy to buy advertising – simple, low-cost and standardised
  2. Maintain growth of the on-line and mobile channels. In many markets this is less about adoption now (where markets are fully saturated for basic internet and mobile services) and more about HOW customers are using their PC and mobile. For example, growing content, entertainment and transactional services (e.g. mobile as a payment tool) is important.
  3. Produce credible research demonstrating the effectiveness of these channels.
  4. Educate the advertising community. It is not sufficient for operators to rely on a build-and-they-will-come approach. Instead operators need to educate advertisers on the benefits of their channel AND work together with advertisers to jointly develop solutions. The customer needs to be part of the development process.