Slightly immoral and unethical ways companies might use Google Adwords to generate business….

In July 2010, ‘Goldtrail holidays‘ a British tour operator, collapsed leaving thousands of holidaymakers abroad when it went into administration.

It took no time at all for fellow tour operators to see this as a great way to generate business. ‘EasyJet’, ‘Fly Thomas Cook’ and ‘Sunwings’ were but some of a few who cottoned onto this and broke a fundamental rule – bidding on a brand-name term that isn’t your own.

Nevertheless, a search query using the term “Goldtrail” or “Goldtrail holidays” returned adverts for cheap holidays abroad and the like. Of course Google would have had to allow this, and probably didn’t act on it because at that point, technically, Goldtrail was no longer an actual legal entity.

The recent Earthquake disaster in Japan, hitting 8.9 on the Richter-scale and sparking off several Tsunamis’, is all over the news and the internet today. It isn’t a brand name, but could this idea be adapted and used as a possible gateway for business? For example, charities pushing sponsorship in the third-world for instance, might post adverts asking for financial help in countries where natural disasters are common by using the words “Japan disaster” “Japan” “Tsunami” “Japan earthquake” “Japan Tsunami” etc, as a broad match – or any keywords that are relevant to this recent tragic disaster.

Click the thumbnails below to see some search terms that are fairly popular at the moment due to current events, and have little competition:

If ads are tactically written so that technically they are not breaching any rules or regulations – like the Goldtrail example above – and instead are tugging at peoples heart strings, this might work.

It seems fine until you consider how this could be misused, for example by charities who take most of what is donated to them and use it to pay “administration fees” and “business costs” before any of it makes it overseas to those in actual need.

You never know…

One comment on Slightly immoral and unethical ways companies might use Google Adwords to generate business…

  1. John Hamilton says:

    A collapsed company goes under the legal domain of the official receiver or appointed receiver and they are criminal laws in place that does not allow a collapsed company name to be used unless officially authorised by that official receiver.
    Of course while such thing may open you to criminal prosecution if it can be as contravening that law it’s unlighted to be undertaken by such authorise unless someone complains.
    Of course the internet is now being pulled in by the regulation bodies so this will be interesting to see if such things do get picked up on, maybe no one has realised that such laws are in place and even then maybe hope it’s all too much for a government or independent party to pick up on unless there’s a large consumer safeguard to it all.

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