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I’ve been looking at how Internet advertising varies by industry. Top advertisers (and the most expensive keywords) tend to be FIRE-related (financial, insurance, real estate), and can be explained by customer acquisition strategies that rely on total lifetime value.  Last week, I summarized Google keywords costs by auto dealership. “Dealers” seemed to be a good way to look at buying interest somewhere in the middle of the auto sales funnel. Also, dealerships are separate legal entities from manufacturers so there could be unique competitive factors in each and every brand.

Search volume correlates nicely with market share with an R-squared greater than 0.8. Chrysler and Ford lag in search volume relative to their market share (likely due to fleet sales):

I was hypothesizing the greater the market share, the more dealers there will be for that brand and therefore AdWords competition will increase. There is some validity to that, but not much:

BMW and Mercedes dealers enjoy low keywords expenses (cpc < $3.00) but Lexus dealers spend alot more ($6.49) despite similar market share. Ford dealers are not paying much despite having the most search volume but Mitsubishi dealers are ($7.42) with their miniscule market share.

Maybe I’ll look at this more closely in the future, taking into account weighted average selling prices and actual dealership statistics (raw numbers, and something that could measure geospatial concentration), if I can find any.


The state of pop music today must be quite sad, but I wouldn’t know because I’ve trapped myself in a shell of hits from the 80’s. It’s all so fragmented now – dozens of Verizon-provided music stations on my TV, varying formats from CD to mp3 to cloud to satellite, as well as highly-segmented tastes and cultures. When Arcade Fire won the Grammy for best album, I was surprised how so few people had heard of them, but their best stuff (Funeral) was released way back in 2005.

Maybe if we had MTV again to tell us all what’s cool and what to listen to, the music industry might be a little healthier and a little more relevant. The only company with the marketing mojo, money, and incentive to do this is Apple. The important thing is having some hipster quasi-elite cultural priesthood filtering the great morass of American culture and finding the stuff everyone would enjoy.

The iPod has changed the way we listen to music. And the way we respond to it.


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