This weird owl  turned up when I searched Flickr for "Friday." Let's just go with it.
Google and Other Forms of Corporate Evil
Eric Schmidt Is Right: Google’s Glory Days Are Numbered  – At TechCrunch, Dan Kaplan quotes from Eric Schmidt’s letter to the Senate Subcommittee on Antitrust, Competition Policy, and Consumer Rights  (“History shows that popular technology is often supplanted by entirely new models”) and explains why Google is headed for a downfall.
Google Freshness Update: The Real Winners & Losers  – Google recently announced a new update that delivers “fresher” results for about 35% of queries. Patrick Altolft thinks will be bad for brands, whose own properties will get pushed below random news and reviews.
Google May Penalize Your Site for Having Too Many Ads  – At PubCon this week, Matt Cutts said that Google may penalize sites with too many ads, especially above the fold, obscuring your content. At Search Engine Watch, John Rampton points out that this is odd, since Google advises AdSense users that “All other things being equal, ads located above the fold tend to perform better than those below the fold.”
Evil Social Networks  – Getting away from Google: Charlie Stross argues that Klout is the most evil type of social network:
Klout [analyzes] your social graph and create accounts for all your contacts without asking them for prior consent. It also appears to use an unwitting user's Twitter or FB credentials to post updates on their Klout scores, prompting the curious-but-ignorant to click on a link to Klout, whereupon they will be offered a chance to log in with their Facebook or Twitter credentials. So it spreads like herpes and it's just as hard to get rid of.
Are You Creeping Out Your Customers With Remarketing?  – Remarketing can be an effective technique, but when do you cross the line into stalking? Brad Geddes shares some strategies, like frequency capping, to avoid leaving a bad taste in potential customers’ mouths.
Google Bottom Ad Placements Eroding CTR  – Jeff Allen at PPC Hero notes that the new bottom-of-the-SERP placements for AdWords ads seem to have a negative effect on CTR. Since lower ad revenues aren’t good for Google, he reasons, they must know something he doesn’t.
SEO & Content Marketing
Jedi Mind Tricks: 17 Lesser Known Ways to Persuade People  – Speaking of creepy, these “tricks” for getting people to buy stuff made me feel a bit ooky about being a marketer (a legal conman?), but still, they’re good tips! And interesting – for example, “swearing can help influence an audience” and “your customers will buy an upsell 60 percent of the time for up to 60% of the original purchase price.” So if someone buys a shirt, you should try to sell them a tie, not a suit.
#1 Rule for SEO Success: Build Spaceships  – How can you resist a post with a title like that? I sure couldn’t – I had to know what the heck Cyrus Shepard was talking about. Turns out, he’s talking about NASA and their bangin’ link profile. “By all accounts, NASA should be terrible at SEO. Their title tags are horrible. They use flash everywhere and the hierarchy of the site’s navigation is a spider nightmare.” Nonetheless, they have huge domain authority because they’re good at building spaceships. In other words, spend less time doing “SEO” and more time building something great.
The Right and the Wrong Way to Use Video for Blogging Success  – Video is great, says Aman Basanti, but make sure you’re using it for things that are better expressed visually than in writing – for example, makeup tutorials or guitar lessons.
Content Marketing Essentials: Tactical Advice From A To Z  – 26 hot tips on content marketing from the amazing Marty Weintraub. (One is “We love link roundups” – good news!)
What Content Writers can learn from SkyMall  – Tony Verre thinks that content writers can learn a lot from SkyMall, the ridiculous catalog in the back of every airplane seat, like exactly what a product is and why you need it in 100 words or less.
I'm Sorry. I Messed Up.  – In this refreshingly personal post on the Ontolo blog, Ben Wills explains his life philosophy – “I decided I'd rather *do* things than _have_ things” – and apologizes for letting his link building tools get away from his principles by including too many features.
What Do a Bunch of Old Jews Know About Living Forever?  – In totally-unrelated-to-marketing news: New York Magazine has an interesting profile on a group of Ashkenazim Jews who seem to possess some kind of magical anti-aging gene. One, Irving Kahn, “hasn’t skipped a day of work in more years than he can remember” (and he’s 105).
Have a great weekend!