Google scored a search advertising grand slam in Q3, but struck out in its $116 billion offline diversification strategy targeting print, radio and television advertising.
In “Is Google hiding the radio star? Google silent on dMarc Broadcasting in Q3” yesterday, I noted that Google CEO Eric Schmidt is not touting Google efforts to diversify into radio, despite its oft-hyped dMarc play in the $20 billion radio advertising market.
Google management royalty, in fact, did not discuss a single non-Internet advertising initiative during its conference call Thursday, while regaling in its Q3 earnings extravaganza and projecting more, much more, of the same for Q4 and beyond.
Google has made no secret of its desire to dominate all the world’s advertising. I have personally heard Schmidt proclaim what he believes is Google’s rightful destiny to “revolutionize” every ad market world wide, for the financial benefit of Google.
I had the pleasure of engaging with Schmidt directly at the Search Engine Strategies Conference (SES) last August in San Jose. During his keynote Q & A, Schmidt said:
we're thinking about using our advertising system and our targetability for every form of advertising.
Schmidt affirmed to the SES audience “measurable radio ads are starting now,” and he spoke about possible “targeted measurable television ads on real television.”
I put forth Google’s television advertising ambitions in “Google CEO wants $74 billion TV ad market”:
Google CEO Eric Schmidt believes television viewers should not have to stand for tv commercials that are 'a waste of your time.' Schmidt is frustrated that 'When you watch the television you see ads that are clearly not targeted for you.'
What does he plan to do about it? Google is preparing to deliver ‘targeted measurable television ads’ and Schmidt says Google has 'a good shot at it.”
Schmidt may be Google’s ultimate cheerleader, but the company has done little to date to realize his lofty television advertising reveries.
In “Will Google ever build another billion dollar business?” I cite Schmidt on why he is attracted to the radio and tv advertising markets:
Those businesses are billion dollar businesses.
I also trace Google’s failure to “revolutionize” the “old-school” $22 billion print magazine advertising business:
Google has apparently abandoned its print diversification efforts which had been aimed at determining "where and how we might best bring value to print advertising”; its “AdSense for Paper” homepage has not been updated since April, following its failed initiative.
Google is also on the failing track in its radio advertising initiatives, as I discuss in “Is Google hiding the radio star? Google silent on dMarc Broadcasting in Q3”
Schmidt showed no excitement yesterday for dMarc. The $1.13 billion acquisition was not touted as part of the 'sum of these five things' fueling Google growth, performance and opportunities...
It is not surprising that Google is not drawing attention to its offline diversification efforts; Google has not been able to show success.
In “3 key questions for Google CEO Eric Schmidt” I asked:
'How will you revolutionize the decades old radio industry via a legacy radio advertising company?'
Schmidt apparently can’t answer the question. His concluding, inspirational look forward to Q4 on Thursday only spoke to Google Web-based opportunities, not its diversification efforts.
Google has struck out three times so far in its dMarc forays, according to Google AdWords product management director, Richard Holden, as quoted by the Washington Post today:
‘If you're not failing enough, you're not trying hard enough…The stigma [for failure] is less because we staff projects leanly and encourage them to just move, move, move. If it doesn't work, move on.’
Holden said Google tried three different ways to make use of the radio advertising company it bought...dMarc Broadcasting, with little success.
Google can’t very well move on as far as dMarc is concerned, though, because Google owns the company. In the Google Speak world, however, the lackluster Google dMarc track record to date is not “three strikes you’re out.”
Holden is cited:
The goal was to sell radio ads through an online auction system similar to AdWords. But, Holden said, ‘I would not describe what we've done as a failure,’ because Google finally came up with a model that he expects to work.
Holden may be giving it the old college try with a fourth time at bat, but for Schmidt, dMarc is not in the starting line-up for Q4.
Not only are the dMarc radio advertising initiatives relegated to Schmidt’s bench, his print advertising forays are on the injured reserved list and television advertising is barely being scouted.
Google's diversification performance to date does not suggest it will be a serious contender in the $116 billion offline advertising world series anytime soon!