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Canada Day 2007 - Do Canadians Get Search?
Friday, June 29, 2007
Ahhh the Canada Day Long Weekend is quickly approaching. Canada Day weekend happens to be one of my favorite long weekends of the year. It leads into the summer and coincides with great Canadian traditions such as the start of the Canadian Football League (CFL) season (Go Riders!), summer holidays for children, days at the beach, summer BBQs and the like. For our friends in the US who may not be familiar, Canada Day is July 1. Canada is turning 140 years old this weekend.
Before I get too sidetracked (and patriotic) with my post, you may be asking what does Canada Day have to do with search? Well a hot topic recently has been questioning whether Canadians understand the use of search. Do Canadians incorporate search marketing as part of their overall marketing strategy? If you ask Gord Hotchkiss, he will tell you a definite "NO, Canadians do not get search." -- Well that's not exactly how he said it, he mentioned something about Canadians Advertisers having their heads up their....

Recently at Search Engine Strategies (SES) Toronto, Gord posted about the fact that he felt that Ontario Tourism wasn't using search. To quote Gord,
If you were planning a vacation in Ontario, don’t expect to see the official tourism site for the Ontario government in the top sponsored ads. They don’t do search.
Well it seems as though Gord truly isn't making many friends with Ontario Tourism judging by his post from yesterday entitled "Doing Search" Only Counts if You're Seen". While I don't necessarily agree with the title of the post because it's obvious that Ontario Tourism is using and doing search... it's just that they are doing it poorly. Gord does bring out some interesting points about Canadians using search and to clarify Gord stated "Its one thing to say "you're doing search" internally and it's a totally different thing to have the searcher realize that "you're doing search".

According to Gord (via Comscore) Canadians use the Internet more than anyone else in the world. We perform more sophisticated queries, are more focused in our online behavior, and do more searches. So why then if you were a Canadian business targeting the Canadian marketplace would you not use search to reach your audience? What's in search marketing for you? Well other than the fact that it is cost efficient, long lasting and can offer a better ROI than traditional forms of marketing, I guess nothing....

Canadian Advertisers are not unlike other advertisers in the US or rest of the world. They have been slow to adopt search as an effective component of their marketing strategy. You can see a difference between the early adopters and the "I wish I would have used search last year" folks. I agree with Gord though and that is that advertisers can spend money more effectively. Search may be a great place to start.

Canada for my money is the greatest nation in the world. We have the beautiful Rocky Mountains, prairies, lakes, rivers and streams. (We have one third of the world's fresh water supply.) We have hockey, we created Superman and we invented the telephone. We take care of the old and the sick and each other. We use search more than anyone else, someone just forgot to mention that to the advertisers in Canada.

Happy Birthday Canada! I am proud to be Canadian.

For more information on Canada Day visit Wikipedia. For more on search engine optimization and search research opportunities visit Enquiro.com

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posted by Jody @ Friday, June 29, 2007  
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