FTD Mandating AdWords Tactics?

Recently on the FlowerChat forums a florist reported some interesting behaviour by FTD’s “Brand Protection” police. Apparently, FTD is not happy that the florist’s AdWords ad is being displayed in their local market on searches for [FTD Flowers].

The florist in question is an FTD member, though they do not publicize their affiliation.
After double-checking their campaign settings the florist confirmed they are not bidding for the [FTD] brand. Instead, Google matched the ad because of the keyword [flowers] in the query.

FTD’s response was quite remarkable. They implied that the florist “had to” use negative keyword matching to ensure they don’t appear for FTD branded searches.

Is FTD over-reaching here?

Are they just desperate to reduce bid competition and lower costs?

Is turnabout fair play? Should FTD and their affiliates have to stop bidding on city and florist names as well?

Google’s policy on brand bidding is pretty clear and has been upheld in court on several occasions. In this case, the florist isn’t even bidding on the brand, but Google has determined the ad is relevant to the query.

Perhaps the best question of all comes from another florist who asked why the “Brand Protection” department was involved:

What can we do to their brand that they have not done?

FTD Mandating AdWords Tactics? by

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4 thoughts on “FTD Mandating AdWords Tactics?

  1. As a florist who has had some personal experience with the Brand Protection issue, I’m happy to report there was no follow up by FTD when I responded that the ball was in Google’s court.

  2. who has had some personal experience with the Brand Protection issue, I’m happy to report there was no follow up by FTD when I responded that the ball was in Google’s court.

  3. We received the letter from the FTD brand protection department and decided that it was in our best interest to protect our business from FTD coming after our company. Like other florist that have received this letter our bidding stragity included broad search terms targeting flowers and florist but never included the term FTD.
    After examining our website access logs and cross referencing them with google analytics we discovered that the number of visitors that used the term FTD in their search was such a small number over a 5 year period that we felt relieved to know that our campaigns would not be impacted by adding the FTD search term to our negative key words.

  4. It does seem like the FTD is over-reaching here, in my opinion. I mean how can FTD demand that someone has to use negative keywords just because they feel that is the right thing to do. This might have just been some stunt to get some publicity going for them. Who knows?

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