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Google’s plot to change the way agencies work

Google’s ultimate goal, [CEO Eric] Schmidt revealed, is to enable the buying of radio slots via a broad menu of ad types distributed via Google’s single web-based interface. “The long-term fantasy is we walk up to you and you give us, say, $10 million and we’ll completely allocate it for you” across different media and ad types, said Schmidt in an interview. “All types of ads can be made more effective, for instance by targeting them to consumers more likely to be interested in them,” he hyped. Agencies are understandably less than enthused by Google’s offering – pointing to its elimination of the personal relationship between buyers and sellers, seen as a key element in effective negotiating. There is also growing concern that Google’s ultimate goal is to persuade large advertisers to bypass agencies and channel all sectors of media buying and selling via Google. Google insists that such worries are unfounded. “Five years from now there will be more work done by those agencies,” ripostes Google’s vp of advertising sales Tim Armstrong. However, Schmidt, his boss, is more pragmatic and concedes that some types of work undertaken by ad agencies “could change”. As to which types and what extent, he diplomatically failed to elaborate.
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