HitTail Success Stories & Ideal Markets

HitTail Best Practices Jul 13, 2006

So, we’re asking for success stories in the forum. You can feel free to go over there and post them. Promoting HitTail beyond the quick pick-up of the early adopters who get it is a challenge, because the ideas are so contrary to some of the more common marketing wisdom out there. Interestingly, the people who seem to get it most are those making money from AdSense. Their parameters for making money almost call for HitTail:

  1. The traffic must be natural, and not paid-for, or else, it’s a wash.
  2. The traffic must sincerely be interested in what’s being said on the page, or else, no one will click the context-sensitive ads.
  3. They’re in it for the long haul, and the slow build. The way AdSense starts making you only a few bucks a week sends a clear message about the need for patience.

That being said, the same criteria that are intuitively obvious for an AdSensor SHOULD be equally embraced by mainstream marketers. How can marketers ever hope to compete with people who are systematically and gradually rising to dominance in certain “conceptual spaces”?

What do I mean by conceptual spaces? Well, the HitTail part of marketing requires you casting of your benchmark keyword restraints, and venturing off into the tangentially related, but still spot-on relevance of HitTail suggestions. This may guide you in directions you never thought to take. And by following the suggestions over time, you start to flesh out content over a conceptual area on the terms that truly are generating the traffic. This is as opposed to the terms people think are generating the traffic, based on industry knowledge, brainstorming sessions, and the common keyword suggestion tools.

One of the first HitTailing success stories to come in has cleverly labeled Niche Modeling, which is actually about predicting the shape of our world in an ecological sense. Its very hot stuff these days with Michael Crichton and Conservatives thinking global warming is overblown, with Al Gore and the rest of the world thinking it’s the crisis of our times. There’s lots of audience out there for this sort of stuff, and lots of competition for the readership.

This scenario with high traffic, high competition, lots of niche subjects is a perfect HitTailing environment. In many ways, davids99us stated the principles of HitTailing better than I ever have. I’ll have to incorporate some of his points into our main material. It is like the opposite of the also-ideal environment where HitTailing methods were developed: digital signage, where there is a small and geographically diverse audience, all of which are searching on different terms. So, the competition is low, but the need to be “predictive” is high.

Eventually, I’ll have to map out the different market scenarios, and where HitTailing is and isn’t appropriate. In a chat recently with David Scott, and he posed the question, where would HitTail not be appropriate. Well, I said if you’re buying a new airliner, you’re going to buy from Boeing or Airbus. There really are only two left, and you know exactly who to call. Then, there are markets where everyone just for whatever reasons absolutely knows everyone else. Well, word of mouth will work better than HitTailing in those markets, because word of mouth is most efficient in highly interconnected social networks.

On the other hand, I’ve identified a few good HitTailing markets.

  1. Emerging industries, where no one knows what to call it. There are no industry trade shows or trade magazines yet. There may be a few scattered blogs and newsletters. Digital signage was a great example.
  2. Popular culture niche topics, where there are unlimited things to talk about, with studies being published all the time. davids99us’ example of the Earth’s environment was a great example.
  3. Cottage industries, where you’re just never going to get distribution otherwise, and you need to sell over eBay or other online methods. I recently bought a $350 litter box for my cats called the Litter Robot. That was a good example.
  4. Mainstream competitive industries where there is an abundance of never-before-addressed terms that could lead to business. This equally applies to B2B and B2C. It’s the perfect corporate blogging strategy.
One response
  1. Avatar
    David Stockwell

    Thanks for the boost Mike. I thought you might like to know I got a hit from Google blog search on the term “Hittail” where the post is #3.

    The title of the post “Trends in Predictive Analytics 2006” was straight out of HitTail suggestions. It is a good title I think — generic, authoritative, and contains a number! Better than putting HitTail in the title which I would have done. But it still rates highly on the HitTail search returns.

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