"I feel in some ways I'm arguing counter to our first discussion, when I talked about the advocacy approach," said LaMotte. "But the goal here is the same for any advertising campaign. In a political campaign, the final result is that the candidate gets elected. Here, the bottom line is revenue, and their goal is conversion [from Gmail to Outlook.com]."
On that level, Scroogled hasn't shown much of anything, or better put, publicly-available metrics haven't shown a change.
comScore's search statistics -- the focus of the first Scroogled last November -- showed that Google increased its share by three-tenths of a percentage point to 67% in January, recouping an identical decline in December. Meanwhile, Microsoft's Bing grew its share by two-tenths of a point in January, ending that month with 16.5%, atop a one-tenth of a point increase in December.
Put in plainer words, 2012's Scroogled failed to move the needle on Google's search share. And while it may have played a part in the two-month boost to Bing, Microsoft's gains came at the expense of Yahoo, Ask.com and AOL, not Google.
There are no similar numbers available for possible share changes in Gmail, Outlook.com and other email services since Scroogled's latest debuted last month.
The ultimate metric, however, may be whether Microsoft continues the campaign. On that note, Weitz was definitive. "We'll keep doing this as long as Google keeps 'scroogling,'" he said.
Gregg Keizer covers Microsoft, security issues, Apple, Web browsers and general technology breaking news for Computerworld. Follow Gregg on Twitter at @gkeizer, on Google+ or subscribe to Gregg's RSS feed. His email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
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