At the beginning of June, I found GoodSearch. It’s a search engine that donates approximately 1 penny to the charity of your choice each time you run a search. The results are powered by Yahoo.
I said I would use it for awhile to try it out and I’ve done that intermittently. It’s hard to stop going to Google though.
I’m going to keep using it (when I remember) and I still love the idea behind it, even if it has its naysayers. The results are as good as any (it’s powered by Yahoo not some backwater search engine company) and you also won’t get any contextual ads on the results page (makes for a slightly cleaner interface.)
In the meantime, just yesterday I was made aware of Blingo (from Steve Poland’s blog: Ideas are Worthless Unless Acted Upon. Note: While I disagree with the sentiment that ideas are worthless, he’s got a great blog that’s worth reading.)
Blingo is a search engine that occasionally selects a random winner who has just performed a search. Prizes include movie tickets, Visa gift cards, iTunes gift certificates, etc. So the prizes are definitely worthwhile for just searching.
Blingo is tied to Publishers Clearing House (although that wasn’t always the case.)
The search is powered by Google (so like GoodSearch there’s no problem with respect to the results being crappy.) Unlike GoodSearch there are sponsored ads that appear (which is how they make their money.)
Note: You can only win if you live in the United States, so for me Blingo doesn’t hold much appeal, except for the basis of this question:
Which is better? Winning prizes or donating to charity?
What do I mean by better? You tell me. But here’s some questions to spur discussion:
1. Which one would you be more interested in using? Search for charity or search for prizes?
2. Which holds more “buzz-potential” or more “viral-potential”?
3. Which model (winning prizes/contests/sweepstakes or donating money to a good cause) could be more effective for your business?
4. How might you implement either approach?
Please, let me know what you think.[tags]goodsearch, search engines, yahoo, google, donating money, buzz marketing, charity, viral marketing[/tags]