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Lee Odden

Session: Searcher Behavior Research Update SES 2007

By Lee Odden     Online Marketing, Search Engine Strategies

The core message of the Searcher Behavior Research Update at this year’s SES was that there are missed search marketing opportunities as traditional marketers fail to take into account the exponential growth of online marketing.

Each study presented valuable data and insight into how search engines can help reach your targeted audience.

For example, Pavan Lee of Microsoft described how marketers of the “soccer mom” segment may miss considerable opportunities by utilizing only traditional marketing. Lee presented a study indicating, that of their sample of “soccer moms”:

  • 90% Use search engines at least 2 times a day
  • 60% Possess an education past high school
  • One -third make a total house hold income of $100,000 or more
  • 57% Use search engines to make a purchase offline

These data support that of the sample taken, this segment has significant buying power and is using search engines on a daily basis to gather information about online and offline purchases. Also a point of interest, is that this segment of searchers are very loyal. They are more likely to remain with one search engine when conducting inquiries rather than switch from engine to engine.

Another study presented discussed the opportunities for consumer packaged goods (CPG) marketers. James Lamberti of comScore Networks pointed out a specific example in which Kellogg’s Cereal spent millions of dollars on an advertising campaign endorsing their organic cereals, yet when searching for organic cereal online using Yahoo, Kellogg’s is nowhere to be found.

This example demonstrates how opportunities are missed by CPG marketers whose marketing campaigns fail to include search.

The studies presented at this year’s Searcher Behavior Researcher Update shared a central theme, in that search marketing continues to grow and it’s important to understand user behavior and to integrate these observations into a search marketing plan. Failure to acknowledge as well as adapt to the behavioral patterns identified by large scale studies may result in the loss of a tremendous opportunity.


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