Thoughts on the Brand Value of Paid Search

I've always been curious about how marketers use search for branding. Search is such an obviously direct response medium, but whenever we survey online advertising executives, they tell us creating brand impact is one of their top search marketing goals. I've actually spoken to marketers who admit they bid themselves into negative ROI on some keywords because they believe the positive brand impact of appearing on those keywords justifies it. The problem is, not one of those marketers has ever been able to quantify for me just how much brand value they were getting from those keywords; this decision is always presented to me as simply an act of faith.

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