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Does Google offer paid SEM management?

     
6:58 pm on Nov 6, 2006 (gmt 0)

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I just had a meeting with a potential client who just had a meeting with Google in NY. They are offering to setup, manage and run his search engine marketing campaign! According to the client (well, potential), Google will have an account executive on the campaign along with the manager to manage day-to-day work and analytics expert who would be responsible for reporting! He was also told that Google will offer a tool to manage bids (automatically) and other campaign services! I believe this person and I am sure he is not lying to me. Now does this means that Google is coming after our (SEM companies) clients? I guess they can since they are certainly growing out of their pants. So what do the SEM company employees do? look for job at Google's "in-house" SEM division? Anybody else know anything about this? Please share!
11:37 pm on Nov 6, 2006 (gmt 0)

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This is the first I've heard of Google offering full SEM services. I do know that they've been building out a large account management team in India, and likewise have heard they're likely to be coming out with a keyword management tool (that's been guessed at many times in the past 12 months).

The reality is, most advertisers won't want ad management services from Google for obvious conflict of interest reasons. If the advertiser isn't wise enough to exclude Google from the SEM consideration set, IMO they're not an advertiser worth serving.

-Shorebreak

11:59 pm on Nov 6, 2006 (gmt 0)

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So you had a meeting... with someone that had a meeting...

This is how rumors get started

12:13 am on Nov 7, 2006 (gmt 0)

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To Rocknroll's defense, if you're talking about Google then I can unequivocably state that WebmasterWorld's AdWords forum has been my #1 source of rumors-that-end-up-being-true.

-Shorebreak

12:14 am on Nov 7, 2006 (gmt 0)

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Hasn't Google been doing this for quite some time? Not sure what is new about this.
1:50 am on Nov 7, 2006 (gmt 0)

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I understood that they had been doing it for overseas accounts, but not US. Is the client a US client?
Thankfully for SEMs, the buzz that I've heard from people who have partaken of google's in-house services is that they aren't very good. Ultimately, they are using rather newbie turn-key employees who may have some insider knowledge, but can't compare the the breadth of understanding that those who have been in the trenches for years have.
As far as selling the client, saying, "who's interests do you think they'll represent---your's or their's" is a pretty compelling point.
4:37 am on Nov 7, 2006 (gmt 0)

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Yup Google has been doing this for a while now (at least in India). They run the whole campaign for the client.
Don't know about the US.
7:20 pm on Nov 7, 2006 (gmt 0)

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Hi,

I can tell you all that this is not a rumor, and even more, Google has been doing it for about a year now (as far as I know) here in South America and also in Spain. It didnīt bother me at all. In fact one of my clients today, was a direct Google Adwords client before he came to me. The reason why he quit from google directly managing his campaign, itīs because the guy Google had working for him didnīt put much effort to do a good job managing campaigns.

10:37 pm on Nov 7, 2006 (gmt 0)

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Thanks for the contribution guys. More explaination -

- This is a US client
- Google NY had a meeting and is talking about creating and managing the whole campaign

I do see your point that there is a conflict of interest issue but I am sure the client with not too much experience in the field will be more inclined to working with Google since they are the source afterall. My counter arguement was obviously in line with alot of comments here -

- We have more experience. Google might have all information at their disposal and decent knowledge on keywords, text ads etc, but that's all. What about the key factors like landing page and conversion funnel optimization? There is a lot more to an SEM campaign than bidding on keywords and creating ads.

Once again, thank you all!

4:59 pm on Nov 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

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Pretty easy for google to do this.

If you're a Google client having trouble- "flick" turn up the quality score from behind the scenes.

Little guys with low "quality" lose out again and the other SEM can't do the same.

5:48 pm on Nov 10, 2006 (gmt 0)

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I agree with Shorebreak there would definitely be a conflict of interest. Some second tier ppc's offer this kind of service and I have heeard horror stories about them.

I have also read a couple of stories about Google setting up Adwords campaigns for their customers and not doing a good job because they put the max bids too high and used too many general keyword terms. That way Google gets more money for clicks.

6:22 am on Nov 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

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Would have to agree on the conflict of interest. Presentations from Google, sales pitches, etc... generally come down to one thing, spend more money on Google. Sometimes this is justified, sometimes not but a neutral 3rd party or your own common sense is needed to help determine if you should spend more and how to best spend more if you do. Working with a SEM specialist with experience and tools and/or someone who takes the time to understand your whole business, your search campaigns across all engines, your media progams and trends in your business is a good investment once you reach a certain size.

It is important to get someone with experience on the advertiser side used to focusing on ROI goals and running campaigns that make money for the advertiser as opposed to having the company you are buying your advertising from run your campaigns. In that kind of situation the person handling the account is likely to be encouraged and may be incentivized to get you to spend more.

11:48 am on Nov 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

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Google directly translates to "conflict of interest".

Seriously.

1:05 pm on Nov 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

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Google directly translates to "conflict of interest".

Seriously.

why? they just offer SEM services like anyone else. if their services were more expensive than those offered by independent SEM companies, customers would definitely not choose them, right?

so where is the conflict of interest?

11:13 pm on Nov 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

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Sorry ..but got say that the post above this one has to be the most naive I have ever seen posted anywhere ..
11:29 pm on Nov 12, 2006 (gmt 0)

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not really IMO.
thinking that companies should not use their own assets is naive.
why do you all think that google belongs to humans and not to google inc.? google inc. created google.com and and they take advantage of it.
thinking that they should not use it just plain stupid.
2:51 am on Nov 13, 2006 (gmt 0)

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not really IMO.
thinking that companies should not use their own assets is naive.
why do you all think that google belongs to humans and not to google inc.? google inc. created google.com and and they take advantage of it.
thinking that they should not use it just plain stupid.

Let's expand on this train of thought to ask why someone would WANT Google to manage their campaigns. Would they not possibly advise you to act in ways that would possibly act in their best interest rather than your own?

Has Google not shown they continually make decisions that have resulted in more and more cost to their advertisers simply because there are very few viable alternatives?

Hey, I have an idea. I'll have one of the local used car salesmen advise me on which car's a good buy. I'm sure he won't recommend an expensive one from his own lot- after all, I hired him. Right?

6:41 pm on Nov 13, 2006 (gmt 0)

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I think you are not thinking this through "Idolw". I think Luke's Car salesman example is a perfect answer. I worked with Google adwwords team in past to get keywords and budget ("recommended budget") for some big clients. I have always recieved thousands of keywords and Millions of $$ recommended budget. I always felt that they did not put any thought into what keywords will yeild high ROI for the customer. They always thought of their interest (Hence, conflict of interest!). Its becoming more clear to me. Bad move on Google's part, I must say!
7:14 pm on Nov 13, 2006 (gmt 0)

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guys, you miss my point.

i asked: why would they not offer their service?
not: why would anyone want to use them?

please, do not change my words.

i am not a google defender. i do really not feel comfortable when there is no diversification possibility.

however, when i read posts saying
"bad google trying to use their own tools!"
"ugly google trying to kill companies using tools belonging to google to make money!"
"greedy google trying to use their own assets!"

i really start to feel 14-year old people read and post at WebmasterWorld.

just go, build your own advertising system and stop whining.

12:09 am on Nov 14, 2006 (gmt 0)

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We can all see that Google is doing this because they think it will increase their revenue stream.

The real question is, are they offering their SEM clients access to tools and information that their competitors can't match? That would be non-competitive behavior.

12:25 am on Nov 14, 2006 (gmt 0)

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We can all see that Google is doing this because they think it will increase their revenue stream.

The real question is, are they offering their SEM clients access to tools and information that their competitors can't match? That would be non-competitive behavior.

They absolutely are. As mentioned above Google will not only be able to see the quality score in its full glory but could also adjust it if needed.

"Wow, unless Google manages my campaigns my quality score is always low..."