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  1. #1
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    CJ Protected Vs Restricted Keywords
    I am new to CJ and I am looking at bidding on some keywords for direct PPC.

    I recently discovered the keyword link for PPC rules. Can anyone explain the difference between "Protected Keywords" and "Non Compete Keywords"?

    I tried a search in CJ and here but didn't find anything.

    Also, I am wondering if there is any flexibility in the Protected or Non Compete keywords, e.g. if only "big green widgets" is specified, does that mean I can bid on "green big widgets" or "big green widget".

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Verbosely Virtuous Mutt spacedog's Avatar
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    June 8th, 2006
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    mr_jones, welcome to the forum!

    I've noticed over my year or so as an affiliate with CJ that "protected" and "non-compete" keywords seem to be interchangeable and that most merchants don't appear to see any difference between them when they post their rules to affiliates. Usually between what the merchant posts in the Advertiser Detail main page for their company, and what they put in the Keyword Link, it's pretty much intuitive what you should not be bidding on via PPC campaigns. It's usually trademarked keywords that they don't want affiliates to bid on, and occasionally in the same area they'll have their policy about PPC ad text and display URLs that affiliates cannot use (again, usually the company's trademarks).

    I don't pay much attention anymore as to where the info is, whether it's "protected" or "non-compete". Just what the text in these fields states. If anyone else wants to elaborate with more info on the subtle differences, feel free. I suspect that if there is a real difference, merchants tend to not know it either. Usually merchants only put in something in one of the two fields, and sometimes they just duplicate what's in one field to the other.

    As for your other question, that's sort of a judgement call. Since what's being protected is almost always a trademark (sometimes the rule is that the merchant in-house PPC program has to have the first position in the ads), try to avoid using the trademark or misspellings of it. But then again, if their trademark itself is a multi-word term and has some generic elements to it, e.g.:

    "Joe's Red Attics" as their company name, and
    "Cheap Attic [TM]" as the product name,

    ...you have some leeway in bidding on the generic "attic" part of the name (as part of your keywords) since they can't legally protect such a word. In this case maybe even the "cheap" part is OK for you to bid on. Think about the product and company names, and consider whether the combo of keywords you want to add to your PPC campaign might mistakenly be confused with the merchant because of their name. If so, don't use it, or send off an email to the Affiliate Manager for the program to check with them.

    Of course, you only have to worry about this with CJ merchants that plainly restrict bidding on their trademarks and make this known in their CJ material. And, the large majority of companies these days do restrict use of their TM. If the restrictions stated for PPC are something generic and not TM (a furniture company saying you can't bid on anything with the word "table", for example), I'd be wary of joining their program as this is not fair.

  3. #3
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    Non-Compete pretty much means that you can bid on those words, but your ad cannot appear above the merchant's ad.

    What they *should* also be telling you is not to bid on those words using a direct link. Otherwise, if all you see is the ad of another affiliate in #1, you cannot tell if the merchant is being out-bid, or is simply not running any ads.

  4. #4
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    Thank you for the all the details!

    I removed one KW.

    I emailed the others to the affiliate rep, and basically said if you have a problem with them, get back to me.

    Thanks Again!

  5. #5
    ABW Ambassador Sheri's Avatar
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    I'll elaborate a little bit from the experience of a compliance officer on terms. My understanding is that restricted is where they can give you a certain amount that you may not bid over, and protected means that you may not bid at all.

    Typically, if they are going to place restrictions of any kind, they will also request that you do a negative match on those terms all together. Meaning that "big green widgets" and "green big widgets" would count as one in the same, so if you did a negative match on one, then the other would be out.

    Some will also specificy about broad matching, and missspellings. My suggestion is if you plan to do PPC's for a campaign that is restricting terms, do your homework. Find out exactly what they are requireing so that you can do things correctly the first time around.

    However, if they are restricting your marketing efforts, I would always consider not marketing them at all. It's your call, but some merchants make it too difficult and expensive to do PPC efforts to make it worth your while. If they are restricting, make sure that you keep a close eye on your ROI, and that if you are forced to use really general terms that it won't be a waste of time and money.

    Sheri

  6. #6
    Moderator MichaelColey's Avatar
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    I would just avoid all of them. With AdWords, there's no way to guarantee that you won't have a higher placement. There are plenty of non-restricted, non-protected keywords. Let the merchant have the easy picking trademark terms if they want them.
    Michael Coley
    Amazing-Bargains.com
     Affiliate Tips | Merchant Best Practices | Affiliate Friendly? | Couponing | CPA Networks? | ABW Tips | Activating Affiliates
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