From the "I knew this was coming" file.
Netimperative article Travel giants ban brand names on Google.
Three major travel firms have reportedly banned smaller retailers from using their brand names as keywords in Google, in a bid to appear higher on search results.
Thomson, Thomas Cook and First Choice have taken the action after rival companies began bidding for the market leaders brand names in their own search marketing campaigns, according to trade magazine Travel Weekly.
By using these keywords, smaller travel firms are able to appear higher in Google search results on the back of the popularity of their larger rivals.
The three companies say they are taking the action to protect their brand, but their smaller rivals have labelled the ban as “anti-competitive”.
The move could signal an important shift in the lucrative search marketing arena, as before now, bidding on trademarked keywords had gone largely unpoliced.
There's a platform coming where brands can control traffic to their site. A model than will start in the PC world and carry over into the mobile world. A one-on-one direct marketing service with any consumer, anywhere and anytime.
Trademark owners are fighting back.
Two things I see here. What will happen to pricing for keywords in the current search engine pay-per-click model. What percentage do trademarked words carry versus generic words (Nike shoes vs running shoes).
What will search engines do when advertisers realize they don't need to pay a search engine for traffic anymore?