Why Google can't make it in the 'real world'

In announcing Google Custom Search Engines, Marissa Mayer, Vice-President of Search Products and User Experience, advised:  "It was the most significant launch that Google would announce in the final months of this year," as reported by FT.com.

In announcing Google Custom Search Engines, Marissa Mayer, Vice-President of Search Products and User Experience, advised: 

"It was the most significant launch that Google would announce in the final months of this year," as reported by FT.com.

Ought we take Mayer’s advisement with the proverbial grain of salt? After all, her boss, CEO Eric Schmidt, credits Google’s non-stop product “blizzard” as one of the five key things responsible for its blowout third quarter: 
the blizzard of new product launches, on precedent for our scale and confusing to almost everyone, seems to create new opportunities for us every day. 

Larry Page, Founder and President of Products, and Sergey Brin, Founder and President of Technology, touted new products and services unleashed in the Google storm.

Brin:

Google Video, which we have developed over the past few quarters or so, as well as obviously you have heard about YouTube, which we announced our intent to acquire. Both of those together are going to really help get more video to more users and providing them with better information to large classes of their kinds of search queries.

Over the past quarter, we also have worked to better integrate our products together and we want to make them more useful to organizations such as businesses, universities, families even. I am speaking primarily, of course, about Google Apps for Your Domain. That combines Gmail, which is the number one used portion of that, but also Google Talk and Calendar, in that they all work together on your own particular domain, whether it is a .com, .org, .edu...

Now it is also going to soon include a couple more products, which the two of them have together been integrated now, and I'm talking about docs and spreadsheets. These are apps that allow users to create, store, share and publish both documents as well as spreadsheets online. We have been using these in-house internally for a while ourselves, and we have been really using them a lot.

Page: 

we partnered with Intuit to make AdWords Starter Edition Maps and Base easily available to Intuit's millions of QuickBooks users. We wanted to make it easier for them to advertise and find customers online, as well as make their information and products and services available on the Internet. We also launched coupons on Google Maps…

We launched Google Checkout and our goal is really to improve the purchasing experience for users and deliver higher conversion rates for advertisers….You can now search in Froogle for Checkout-enabled merchants, and this is a feature I find really useful when I buy things online.
What is the common denominator among the “blizzard” of products and services itemized by Page and Brin? All the Google initiatives reported on in its Q3 Wall Street conference are online products and services aimed at consolidating and extending Google’s dominance on the Web. 

Schmidt often quips, “don’t bet against the Internet.”

What about Schmidt’s bets OFF the Internet, however?

 

The Google executive team was mum on its oft publicly touted mission to revolutionize ALL the world’s advertising, notably the $116 offline print, radio and television markets, as I put forth in “Google failing to snag $116 billion print, radio, television ad markets”:

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.

I concluded, with a nod to the World Series:

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!

How can the $148 billion (and growing, daily) market cap Google be failing, at anything?

Schmidt may not be “betting against the Internet,” but he doesn’t mind betting against people. 

In "Can Google CEO Eric Schmidt make it in NYC?” I put forth Schmidt’s publicly proclaimed disdain for sales PEOPLE. Schmidt extolls the virtues of its self-serve ad system over flesh and blood sales execs:

As people see targeted advertising as a way of selling they shift sales dollars, not marketing dollars, into advertising. Literally, they would put advertising dollars into Google rather than hiring a sales person…

Eventually we would hope that a targeted ad would be better than a targeted sales person; The ad can serve 24 hours a day, the ad can serve anywhere, and the ad is cheaper. The ad doesn’t require a lot of management overhead and is much more cost effective to deploy.

There are a lot of products where traditional sales forces can be diminished.

I mused “How will Schmidt’s vision be received in perhaps the ‘capital of the world’ for ad sales people”?

Google’s vision for decimating decades old ways of doing business via personal relationships has indeed met its match in the “real world”: people.

Google can be king of its technology playground online with multi-billion dollar worldwide scalable gadgets, but it can not rule in the one-off offline world by aiming to supplant people, and people’s jobs, in favor of Google algorithms, platforms and slogans.

Schmidt may have to earn his slice of the $116 billion offline advertising pie the old fashioned way, one handshake at a time.

ALSO SEE: Google is NOT Invincible: 5 Reasons Why
Google vs. Web 2.0: Cache as cash can

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