Everything I Know about Marketing I learned from Google

Cory Treffiletti, Catalyst SF

Cory Treffiletti
President and Managing Partner
Catalyst SF

Why do you think Google’s been so successful?

Simplicity. A simple story. Simple creative. So simple it speaks to everyone.

Search can be complex but they’ve built the tools and made them free so mom and pops can figure them out. Free keyword estimation [and] keyword generation tool. Push a button and, poof, you’re on Google.

It’s simple and seamless. And it is closed loop. Everything they’ve done since their search engine is meant to close the loop so you don’t need to go anywhere else.

As Google gets into more and more channels and platforms, will it begin to replace agencies?

The marketing and advertising community is busy and doesn’t like self-service. But it’s always about the audience. Google’s audience is the world. They focus on the audience first and then marketers will come to them.

But Google will never have 100% share of market so there will always be a need for agencies to plan and buy the other media. [If Google had 100% share,] agencies may exist only to buy Google but you still need agencies.

[Agencies would be able to address questions like,] “How do I make use of [Google’s] tools better? The role of the agency is “How do I get audience to product.”

Google has a great platform for paid media but there will always be a role for service-based agencies.

How would you describe Catalyst SF?

We do strategy and media management. We are a marketing strategy firm with digital at the core.

What do you think the marketing ecosystem will look like in 10 years and what will be Google’s role?

Google will just be 1 partner.

Apple will create TV’s and Google will be the OS [operating system] to help organize the content.

Google will be the OS for the car but Ford will still build them.

Google’s mistake was building hardware for the phone. It should focus on the Android OS.

Google can be the OS for anything crowd-related.

Do you think Google will generate significant revenue from sources outside advertising?

Google’s revenue will never dip below 75% advertising. The Google OS is a play to own the environment where the advertising will be [to ensure that no-one will try and box them out of it].

The Google car OS [is an example]. It’s a navigation system with advertising applications built in. “Hey, a McDonald’s is coming up.”

Marketers’ only job is to figure out where your audience is. Have an ear to innovation. The fundamentals haven’t changed [and won’t]. They still apply no matter how technology and platforms change.

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