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News Search Analysis: SES San Jose

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If you evaluate the news stories and blog posts about Search Engine Strategies, then "universal search" beat "click fraud" as the top story to come out of the conference. If you analyze all the news coverage of SES San Jose, then Wednesday's keynote speaker Marissa Mayer beat Tuesday's keynote speaker Jim Lanzone as the top newsmaker at the event.

How do I know that Google's universal search effort and Google's VP of search products & user experience trumped click fraud, Ask.com's CEO, and the other big stories to come out of the show?

Marissa MayerOver the weekend, I used Google Blog Search, IceRocket, Yahoo News and Google News to do a little content analysis of the blog posts and news stories from the event. When I looked at some of the hot topics at the conference, I discovered that there were more mentions of "universal search" than there were of "click fraud." And, when I compared the two keynote speakers, there were more mentions of Google's Marissa Mayer than there were of Jim Lanzone, CEO of Ask.com.

  • A query on Google Blog Search for "Search Engine Strategies" found 6,206 blog posts from the past month. Of these, 279 mentioned "universal search," 278 mentioned "Marissa Mayer," 202 mentioned "click fraud," and 137 mentioned "Jim Lanzone." A search for "SES San Jose" found 2,938 blog posts from the past month. Of these, 187 mentioned "universal search," 139 mentioned "Marissa Mayer," 124 mentioned "click fraud," and 116 mentioned "Jim Lanzone."
  • A query on IceRocket's Blogs Trend Tool for "Search Engine Strategies" found 1,292 blog posts from the last month. Of these, 82 mentioned "universal search," 59 mentioned "Marissa Mayer," 37 mentioned "click fraud," and 31 mentioned "Jim Lanzone." A search for "SES San Jose" found 836 blog posts from the last month. Of these, 73 mentioned "universal search," 33 mentioned "click fraud," 29 mentioned "Marissa Mayer," and 29 mentioned "Jim Lanzone."
  • A query on Yahoo News for "Search Engine Strategies" found 243 stories from the past month. Of these, 61 mentioned "Marissa Mayer," 32 mentioned "universal search," 30 mentioned "click fraud," and 27 mentioned "Jim Lanzone." A search for "SES San Jose" found 178 stories from the past month. Of these, 29 mentioned "click fraud," 18 mentioned "Marissa Mayer," 16 mentioned "universal search," and 8 mentioned "Jim Lanzone."
  • A query on Google News for "Search Engine Strategies" found 159 stories from the past month. Of these, 29 mentioned "Marissa Mayer," 20 mentioned "universal search," 18 mentioned "click fraud," and 17 mentioned "Jim Lanzone." A search for "SES San Jose" found 105 stories. Of these, 14 mentioned "universal search," 11 mentioned "click fraud," 9 mentioned "Marissa Mayer," and 9 mentioned "Jim Lanzone."

If you didn't attend the conference, here are a half a dozen examples of the big news that you missed:

Now, there were a number of untold stories and a lot of under-reported news at the show. How do I know? They were hidden in plain sight - on the trade show floor. There were more than 120 sponsors and exhibitors at the Search Engine Strategies Expo in San Jose. Many of them were exhibiting new search products or marketing services.

And while a small army of journalists and bloggers were busy 10 hours a day over four days providing wall-to-wall coverage of the keynote conversations and conference sessions, only a small handful of news hounds were checking out the booths on the show floor for story ideas.

For example, over in the Enquiro Research booth, I picked up a business card that let me download a free whitepaper entitled, "Search Engine Results: 2010." It features the latest eye tracking research - including Google's universal search. Written by Gord Hotchkiss, the President and CEO of Enquiro, it also features interviews with eight leading industry experts - including Marissa Mayer - on what search engines may look like over the next three years.

Enquiro eye tracking

While Hotchkiss and his latest eye tracking research didn't get as much news coverage as Marissa Mayer or universal search, "Search Engine Results: 2010" provides a glimpse of what the big stories may be at next year's SES San Jose. I've already incorporate its findings into a new presentation - with attribution, of course.

Greg Jarboe is the president and co-founder of SEO-PR, a search engine optimization firm and public relations agency. He is also the news search, blog search and PR correspondent for the Search Engine Watch Blog.

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