If you're a high-level executive at a search marketing agency, chances are you've gotten the call.
The search arms race continues, and this time the arms are of the human variety. Google is looking to recruit high-profile search agency execs to join its team, as Yahoo did last month with former Carat Interactive VP Ron Belanger.
Several search agency execs have told ClickZ News that they have received numerous calls from headhunters recruiting for high-level agency outreach positions at the search engine. Those calls have increased since Yahoo picked up Belanger two weeks ago. A Google spokesperson declined to comment on its hiring plans or practices.
"We've been getting calls from headhunters looking to fill several roles at Google," one SEM exec confided. "Who better to help them work with agencies than someone who knows the space from the inside?"
As part of Google's outreach, the company conducts on-site training sessions with agency personnel. Those workshops teach basic product functions, discuss advanced strategy techniques, and outline thought leadership issues surrounding the industry, Chris LaSala, head of agency programs at Google, told ClickZ News.
"We've always been working closely with agencies, especially since we opened our New York sales office five years ago," LaSala said. "The team is always growing."
The agency teams at Google are organized both by vertical markets, to ensure expertise in various industries, and by account-specific teams for each of the largest advertisers and agencies. For smaller advertisers and agencies, the Google Advertising Professional program was put in place last fall, and was broadened in April to begin certifying companies as well as individuals.
Yahoo has also been building up its agency outreach efforts in recent months. In August, Yahoo expanded its four-year-old Ambassador programs to create a three-tiered system with varying levels of education, training and search marketing resources to help them sell and manage Yahoo Search Marketing campaigns for their clients. It followed that up with the hire of Belanger to its strategic alliances team, tasked with giving more personal service to large direct advertisers and agencies.
"We've seen more large advertisers lately, and we want them to understand how they should be evaluating search, how they can incorporate search into their marketing portfolio, and how they can build a search infrastructure," Chris Bolte, SVP of strategic alliances at Yahoo Search Marketing, told ClickZ News.
"These questions were coming more frequently from larger advertisers and more traditional agencies. We saw in Ron a person who was uniquely qualified," Bolte added.
Many search execs have gotten calls from MSN as well, as it looks to fill out its staff for its upcoming worldwide launch of its own paid search platform.
On the heels of a fantastic event in New York City, ClickZ Live is taking the fun and learning to Toronto, June 23-25. With over 15 years' experience delivering industry-leading events, ClickZ Live offers an action-packed, educationally-focused agenda covering all aspects of digital marketing. Register today!
Want to learn more? Join us at ClickZ Live San Francisco, Aug 10-12!
Educating marketers for over 15 years, ClickZ Live brings together industry thought leaders from the largest brands and agencies to deliver the most advanced, educational digital marketing agenda. Register today and save $500!
Kevin Newcomb joined ClickZ in August 2004, covering search marketing and other online marketing topics. He has been reporting on web-based businesses since 2000.
Before the bubble burst, Kevin was a marketing manager for an online computer reseller, handling copywriting, e-mail marketing, search marketing and running the affiliate program.
With a combination of real-world marketing experience and years of business journalism, Kevin brings to ClickZ a unique ability to deliver news and training materials that help online marketers do their jobs better.
Hong Kong, May 5-6, 2015
Gartner Magic Quadrant for Digital Commerce
This Magic Quadrant examines leading digital commerce platforms that enable organizations to build digital commerce sites. These commerce platforms facilitate purchasing transactions over the Web, and support the creation and continuing development of an online relationship with a consumer.
Paid Search in the Mobile Era
Google reports that paid search ads are currently driving 40+ million calls per month. Cost per click is increasing, paid search budgets are growing, and mobile continues to dominate. It's time to revamp old search strategies, reimagine stale best practices, and add new layers data to your analytics.
May 6, 2015
12:00pm ET/9:00am PT