Saturday, December 26, 2009
The world as seen through the eyes of the AdWords targeting in GMail accounts can be a quirky place indeed.
Based on an email thread about a holiday potluck, advertisers are inviting me to enjoy:
- A tasty bowl of packaged stuffing (courtesy Stouffer's);
- Followed by a delightful canned pineapple salad (thanks Dole);
- With a recommendation that not all meals need to have meat (so far, so good, and thanks, Mayo Clinic);
- But contradicting them, an introduction to just head out for a meal at the Lone Star Steakhouse (courtesy Lone Star Steakhouse)
I'm not going to say which of these is winning the race for my heart and mind, but I can say it isn't the canned fruit salad people.
Labels: gmail, google adwords
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
Can you believe GMail is 5.59 years old? Google AdWords (Select), by contrast, is only a bit older at 7.76 years old.
I'm sitting here looking at one email thread in GMail that has 41 messages in it over the past 15 days. Like a mini-Basecamp masquerading as an ordinary inbox.
GMail has its quirks, but I don't let them derail me. As I am highly dependent on the power of GMail.
Conversations I have with "ordinary email users" often result in them saying "I can't find..." or "can you re-send..."? I honestly don't know how people cope when they can't refer back to a message or attachment in a matter of seconds.
Where would I be with that project with the 41 messages right now, if I were using old-fashioned email methodology?
I now see it as a foregone conclusion that GMail market share will overtake the #2 and #1 players, Hotmail and Yahoo Mail, eventually. Main reason: the others aren't very good. They release new features and more storage - but they're not as fast, not as cool.
Some people hate the threading thing, and don't like to change their routine, but that is offset by the ongoing flood of new users.
Thursday, April 09, 2009
First mail goggles, now this. So... the developer had a fight with his girlfriend, got her email after somebody went across a few time zones, forgot the time zones, called up to apologize, she was groggy, and that made it worse. So they invented a GMail feature to combat the problem.
Welcome to another installment of "how engineers think".
Thanks, guys, for solving - or attempting to solve - a really specific problem. But: sleeping on the couch is sleeping on the couch. Ain't no GMail feature gonna fix that. :)
Sunday, February 08, 2009
After a slow start, GMail is on a raging pace to overtake Hotmail in the next 12-18 months. GMail posted 43% year-over-year growth last year.
It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out why. (1) On a standalone basis the Gmail product rocks and innovation is ongoing. (2) GMail integrates with other (better) Google products as well; Google is thus the new portal/monopolist in the space, replacing Microsoft.
When GMail was first released, it was "Game On." Now, it's looking more like "Game Over."
Labels: gmail, hotmail
Wednesday, January 28, 2009
Offline Gmail. Sure.
Saturday, November 17, 2007
Like master of micropersuasion Steve Rubel, I use GMail as kind of a personal and business nerve center and intranet (though not to the same extent). One of the many life-saving attributes of GMail is that I can access my "sent mail" anytime, anywhere. So if I sent that vital proposal to a client, or a presentation to the conference organizers and myself... even if the version I sent to myself goes astray, the "sent" version is always neatly archived.
That may seem obvious to some users, but I was surprised to hear a colleague say he didn't like GMail because he needs a huge amount of storage. It seems I'm always hearing new (inaccurate) claims about GMail's shortcomings! In light of the fact that Outlook users have very large hard drives to store everything on their desktops, I suppose Google's former 2 or 4 gig limit seemed "small," especially in light of the fact that Yahoo Mail just went to "unlimited" storage.
But wait: Google not only increased their storage limit to 6 GB (by January 2008), but the "rate of increases" has gone up by 10X, meaning that you'll be unlikely to need more storage in the future as the amount you have passes 10, 11, 12, gig. But even there, if you need an industrial-strength 40GB mailbox now, it's not like anyone's stopping you. Google offers this. That'll cost all of $75.
I have to address another common concern among new Google Mail users. People are quite uncomfortable with the "threading" of emails into conversations, and the AJAXy presentation. Granted, it's a bit tough to get accustomed to, but the clear advantages in terms of recall, speed, and coherence are something I can prove to you -- because I still also use Yahoo Mail daily.
With Yahoo Mail (I admit I'm using the Classic version, but this heightens the contrast), a bunch of email replies to which I'm cc'd stretch down the page. I have to pick where to start following the thread, and potentially open and consider each new reply. Yecchhh. With GMail, I know where everything is in the thread, and can click through the steps much faster. This is particularly vital for anyone working with multiple constituencies on multiple projects.
I shake my head at all the GMail haters out there, but I guess that's just the way with technology, people are very particular in their tastes.
Labels: gmail, Yahoo Mail
Monday, September 03, 2007
Thanks to Phillipp Lenssen for this account of Marissa Mayer's and Paul Buchheit's debates about ads in email, and the timing of product development. The timing does seem a little bit incredible, but maybe GMail was in development for a long time. Lenssen is checking.
Labels: gmail, google adsense
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