Everything I Know about Marketing I learned from Google

FAQ #1: What Made You Want to Write a Book?

August 2, 2010 by Aaron Goldman

To answer this question, I’ll cut and paste the response I included in my book proposal to this set of questions from McGraw-Hill:

In four to six paragraphs, please describe your book, its purpose, approach, and content. What prompted you to write the book now? Describe any significant trends, events or current news relating to the subject matter of your book. What are the outstanding, distinctive, or innovative features of the book?

I’ve always wanted to write a book. Now that I’ve started a family, it’s one of two things left on my bucket list. The other is running a marathon. I figure my knees will hold up better then my fingers — what with the carpal tunnel setting in from all the blackberrying and blogging I do — so I’d better get going on that book.

I’ve always loved to write. I was the sports editor of my high school paper. I worked at my college newspaper — granted that was an ad sales gig. And I currently publish a byline every two weeks in one of the largest internet marketing trade publications — in addition to authoring some fifteen odd blogs.

I’m ready to write this book. When I started my own company in April of this year, I finally took control of my professional destiny, as well as my personal calendar. Accordingly, I’ve been able to set my own priorities and publishing a book is at the top of the list.

The industry is ready for me to write this book. Google is everywhere. It’s loved and feared all at the same time. But, more importantly, it’s well-known and used by billions. For business professionals, Google is not only part of the every-day routine navigating the web, it’s a core component of the corporate marketing mix. (Google currently generates over $20 billion in advertising revenue globally and accounts for over 25% of all internet advertising spend.) The ubiquity of Google and the uniqueness of its corporate culture make it a subject everyone can relate to.

I’ve learned so much from Google. Having been involved in internet advertising for over ten years and spent hundreds of millions of dollars with Google on behalf of my clients, I have a unique window into where the company’s been, where it’s going, and what’s made it so successful. These lessons transcend advertising with Google, advertising on the Internet, and even advertising in general. These lessons can be applied to every aspect of marketing from public relations to product development to promotions to brand strategy.

Everyone can learn so much from Google. It’s time for me to share what I’ve learned. I’ll share what I’ve learned through first-hand experience working with clients like FedEx, Visa, Gatorade, State Farm, Lowe’s, Apple among others. I’ll share what I’ve learned through first-hand encounters with the Google brain trust. And I’ll share what I’ve learned by observing innovative, growth-oriented companies, like Zappos and Threadless, putting lessons learned from Google to good use. Along the way, I’ll keep the action moving with a compelling narrative from an “insider’s” point-of-view, leaving the reader with tangible action-items to improve his or her own marketing efforts. And, ala Twitter, I’ll keep the copy light and easily digestible to appeal to today’s attention-span-challenged professionals. Speaking of Twitter, I plan to intersperse relevant tweets from industry influentials as well as messages solicited specifically for this book via a new account I’ve set up, @LearnFromGoogle. [Note: this was subsequently changed to @GoogleyLessons -- see FAQ #4 for rationale.]

Note: this post is part of a series. For more, see the full list of FAQs.

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