Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Your Brand on Wikipedia

by Steve Rubel
published September 11, 2006

Like It or Not, Advertisers Should Avoid Trying to Control Open Source. Last year Home Depot spent over a half a billion dollars on measured media, according to TNS data. The money was well spent -- Google Trends shows that U.S. searches for Home Depot nearly doubled this year.

But it's highly likely that many consumers, in conducting their due diligence, landed on the company's Wikipedia article which, as of this writing, ranks fifth in a Google search for the retailer. Among a lot of neutral-to-positive information, you will learn that there have been several cases where illegal drugs were found inside some Home Depot merchandise in Massachusetts.

Like it or not, the Wikipedia open-source phenomenon looms large right where companies are increasingly spending billions of dollars to jockey for position: on search-engine results pages. A quick check of dozens of the brands on Ad Age's Top 200 Megabrands list reveals that Wikipedia often ranks high not just among Google search results but also among results from Yahoo, MSN Search and The same can also be said for media brands, celebrities, CEOs and other personalities.



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