I’m blogging live from SXSW Interactive today. It’s been a crazy ride so far, and we’ve still got two days to go. The buzzword of the conference seems to be social media. I almost feel like the lone voice of paid search here. While I agree that social media advertising is a significant force, I think it has a long way to go to be viable. For example, there doesn’t seem to be any way to reliably measure cost per conversion. Until they figure that out, I don’t think social media will be replacing PPC any time soon.
I did get some insight from Steven Johnson’s talk on the future of news. Johnson seems to think that laid-off newspaper journalists will be able to pay their bills by starting hyperlocal blogs and earning money from online ad revenue. He theorizes that advertising dollars from now-defunct newspapers will migrate to the web. While I agree with him on this point, I have my doubts that ad revenue from a blog with such a limited audience could generate enough AdSense revenue to pay the bills. It might be a good idea to brush up on content network strategy just in case, though.
That’s it for now. More updates later if something piques my interest.