Verizon Selling Google AdWords – Ma Bell & Local Search
Verizon SuperPages will begin taking full advantage of their reach to thousands upon thousands of small businesses under a recent agreement with Google where Verizon has become a Google AdWords reseller. The announcement was made at The Kelsey Group’s Drilling Down on Local Conference in San Jose.
Now, a small business which is comfortable and experienced with Verizon’s offline dealings can easily be swayed to advertise on a large chunk of the search engine web via Google AdWords and their local advertising offerings, which are unarguably much better than Google’s competition and include the powerful trifecta of Google, Ask.com and AOL : which all see local as their future.
Contributing Search Engine Journalist Columnist, good buddy and Managing Editor of the Kelsey Group; Greg Sterling told CNET that deals like this “are critical to move the local search market forward because these businesses would not go on their own to Google or Yahoo.”
“There is a lot of inertia in the small-business market, which relies on sales representatives to call them or visit,” Sterling said.
One question is will this pose a threat to current search engine marketing businesses?
If the core of your search marketing business is managing large dollar AdWords accounts for local businesses, I’d recommend making sure your communication with that business and customer service remains top notch (along with your SEM management), especially with Ma Bell entering the search marketing market.
Not only does Verizon have the reach, but they also have the advertising base to recruit, which is a bit scary. For instance, if I have a client who is advertising on Verizon Superpages and Superpages sees how much the client spends with Verizon per month and has a basic idea of the client’s local Google Adwords budget (based upon the performance of that client’s competition on Verizon managed Google Adwords or other advertisers of the same business type in other markets), what’s to stop them from attempting to cut out the Search Marketing firm and go direct to the client, trying to pitch their AdWords management?
Sure, Verizon probably would not do this, and given my past experience with their PPC customer service, any client leaving a boutique search marketing shop for Ma Bell would be insane, but the opportunity and threat is now a reality. Hopefully in this instance Ma Bell won’t have the Ill Communication.
Additionaly, once Yahoo Search Marketing gets their local targeting act together and MSN adCenter goes full blast, if Verizon can also focus on the reselling of those local search spots, we’ll have a monster on our hands.