Google is the “superpower” and looks to remain that way in the mid-term at least. Looking at the online marketing results of my travel clients who are spreading marketing spend across a few important media, Google PPC wins hands down from an ROI perspective. Add to this the ease of managing the campaigns from both an agency and in-house perspective, and the ease of integration of Adwords into Google Analytics, and the combination is all but astonishing.
The major impact for all industries - travel included - is that it should bring more powerful marketing tools to the market for everyone to use.
Google seems to repeating patterns of old, and everyone else is just playing catch-up:
- Google Step 1 - build in-house solution, or acquire a bad one and release an “okay” product; and
- Google Step 2 - figure out what the market really needs and go and buy someone else to support that.
- Google video followed by the acquisition of Youtube (so far a pure media land-grab rather than tech acquisition perhaps)
- Acquisition of Urchin which became Google Analytics V1, following by the acquisition of MeasureMap which became the awesome Google Analytics V2 (or perhaps V1 squared)
- Google Adsense followed by the DoubleClick deal (or perhaps Adsense squared)
On a practical level, my travel clients are desperately trying to find ways of finding new users for their sites (outside of Google), and these acquisitions should make entities like RealMedia and aQuantive (and their media placements/markets/technology) more readily available to smaller businesses. Lets hope the ROI’s lives up to Google levels.