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Guy Kawasaki Is No Google Whore

written by John Chow on January 6, 2007

The Ultimate Online Profit Model

This is from Guy Kawasaki’s “Official” Bio:

Guy Kawasaki is a managing director of Garage Technology Ventures, an early-stage venture capital firm and a columnist for Forbes.com. Previously, he was an Apple Fellow at Apple Computer, Inc. where he was one of the individuals responsible for the success of the Macintosh computer.

Guy is the author of eight books including The Art of the Start, Rules for Revolutionaries, How to Drive Your Competition Crazy, Selling the Dream, and The Macintosh Way. He has a BA from Stanford University and an MBA from UCLA as well as an honorary doctorate from Babson College.

Guy Kawasaki maybe all the above, but one thing he is not is a Google Whore. Mr. Kawasaki recently posted a review of his first year of blogging. There were some very interesting stats.

  • 2,436,117 page views for an average of approximately 6,200/day.
  • 262 posts generated 6,961 comments and 1,937 trackbacks. That’s 25 comments/post and 7 trackbacks/post.
  • 21,000 people receive RSS feeds via Feedburner and 1,457 receive emails via FeedBlitz.
  • Total advertising revenue: approximately $3,350 = $1.39 cpm.
  • Ending Technorati ranking: #45.

Guy Kawasaki is seen as a captain of industry and master of the business world. Therefore, when he started his blog a year ago, everyone assumed it would get huge (true, #45 on Technorati) and make a lot of money. The make a lot of money part hasn’t panned out as far as Google AdSense was concern. Nearly 2.5 million page views later, Mr. Kawasaki made just $3,350 from Google AdSense, or $279.16 a month.

No one who knows even a little bit about AdSense optimization would be shocked that Guy Kawasaki made so little from Google. His ad placements were just plain bad. However, because this is Mr. Guy Kawasaki, many bloggers (here, here and here just to name a few) are using Mr. Kawasaki’s AdSense failure as proof that Google doesn’t work. Even CNN got in on the act.

How can a blog with 30,000 readers per day make only $279.00 per month with AdSense? The answer is simple. Over 22,000 readers never visit the blog – they read it by RSS (no Google ads there). The remaining readers who do visit the blog don’t click on the Google ads because it’s poorly optimized.

Mr. Kawasaki never cared about the Google ads. They were slapped on without thought or consideration. His blog wasn’t made to promote Google. It was made to promote Guy Kawasaki, his speaking engagements, and his books. Google was an afterthought.

Too many bloggers think all one needs to do is set up a blog, slap on some Google ads, and then watch the money roll in. It doesn’t work that way and it never will. Even if your name is Guy Kawasaki, you still need to tweak the ads if you want to make serious money from them.

I guess I shouldn’t complain about bloggers calling AdSense a failure. It just means more money for me.

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