ask.com algorithm promotions backfiring?Many of the readers of this blog are involved in search, in some way. So you may find this interesting. But even if you're not interested in search, I would like you to read this.

Yesterday, I was talking to my tech-savvy (but not search-focused) brother-in-law while on a flight together. One of the things that came up, after loaning him a pen with an Ask.com logo on it, was the new The Algorithm campaigns. I asked him what he thoughts on some of the controversial ones, but he said he didn't really see the billboards. He mentioned how he saw the commercials on TV for "The Algorithm."

He then asked me about Google's algorithm and if it is really the best. I gave him my thoughts and then brought the conversation back on the commercials. I explained that Ask.com leaked Edison, the code-name for the new algorithm that sparked a new visual approach and behind the scenes approach for Ask.com. I explained how the billboards planted the seeds to the commercials. Which planted the seeds for the new Ask.com look.

He then said something to the effect of...

Wait... The commercials are for Ask.com and not Google? I thought "The Algorithm" was about Google?

I was stunned, taken back and then regained my composure.

Are other people, normal people, non-search geeks, seeing these ads and feeling they are for Google? Are you? Would love to see comments from non-search folks...