Marketers don’t have to choose between using Amazon or Google. Tim Van Der Bilt, Director of Marketplaces at Incubeta, says brands should align their strategies and optimise their activities across both powerful platforms to gain immediate and longer-term benefits.
Sometimes, two separate entities are brought together to make something far greater than the sum of its parts. These things might not initially make sense together, they may even compete with each other, and yet somehow the combination still works. Things like peanut butter and jelly, denim and more denim and, for marketers, Amazon and Google.
Now when it comes to digital marketing, there is no denying that Google is still leading the pack. The search engine-turned-technology powerhouse has become a well-established part of how brands connect with audiences online, with forecast advertising revenue of $168.44bn in 2022 alone. It has been leading the digital ad-selling race by quite some way, for quite some time, and will probably continue to do so.
But Amazon is starting to catch up. While its advertising unit only brought in $37.7bn last year – which is clearly less than Google’s – it showed year-on-year growth of over 21 per cent. On top of that, recent estimates suggest it will account for 10.2 per cent of total digital adspend worldwide in 2023. Conversely, Google has started slowing down.
With both being seen as ‘rivals’ in the advertising space, marketers would be forgiven for thinking they need to choose between the two when planning future strategies. The thing is though, they don’t. Instead, the two can be combined, artfully fusing the intense pulling power of Google with the sharp potential of feisty up-and-comer Amazon and creating something with greater potential than either could offer alone – the legendary Amazoogle.
Contrasting, not competing
While there is, of course, some truth to the assumption that Amazon and Google are competitors – what with both being tech giants trying to grasp control of the digital marketplace – there’s really no need for you to pick sides. This isn’t sports.
Instead, you’re free to use both as you see fit. Weigh up the different strengths and weaknesses of each platform and make your own mind up about how you can combine the benefits of each. Sure, there might be some areas where the competition between the two is fiercer than others – such as in cloud services or the Alexa vs Google Assistant battle – but, for the most part, the offerings from each of the tech giants are different enough to merit their own place in the same marketing strategy. After all, Google is predominantly a search engine, and Amazon is primarily an ecommerce platform. While these might contrast, they don’t have to compete.
To succeed in using both together though, and successfully incorporate Amazoogle in a single strategy, you need to stop focusing on your business operations and put the customer at the centre of your marketing – still meeting them with the right message, but on their terms.
The best of both worlds
Your customers are going to use Google for one thing, and Amazon for something else. For example, it’s highly unlikely that they will use Amazon to find restaurant recommendations or to check when the platypus was discovered (1799, in case you were wondering). They are, however, more likely to start their product search on Amazon, rather than on Google.
So, for you to be where your customer is and get the right message to them at the right time, these differences need to be understood. As the customer is taking an omnichannel approach to their online activities, so should you in messaging them, which means looking at the data from both Google and Amazon and gaining insight into their behavior, preferences and purchasing history across both.
Once you have that data, you can then channel it through your powerful new Amazoogle strategy, optimising your marketing activities across both platforms and tailoring your output to the specific features, functionality and typical uses of each.
The year’s hottest power couple
The combination of Amazon and Google doesn’t just create a fun new word to say at your Monday meetings, it provides you with a future-ready marketing plan that brings immediate benefits. In other words, a win-win.
The future part of your Amazoogle strategy allows you to remain flexible and quickly adapt your plans based on the growth of either, or both, platforms. Given the current levels of global uncertainty we’re facing, anything that can provide more flexibility to your marketing is going to be a good thing.
The immediate benefits are threefold. First, you’ll unlock greater efficiency, with one strategy focused on multiple channels instead of a siloed and separated approach. Second, you’ll start noticing higher ROI and growth. Given that you’re more efficient, the ROI will, of course, be higher, and the application of Amazoogle will increase your potential market – offering more growth potential.
And third, you’ll find your strategy has become more competitive. Those who acknowledge the potential of Amazon will be in a stronger position, competitively speaking, than those who don’t. This is the position you want to be in – as the negative impact of ignoring Amazon will start to show on commercial results in a fairly short period of time.
Amazoogle: a portmanteau with purpose
At the end of the day, consumers don’t really care that Amazon and Google are competing companies. They’re going to use whichever platform best serves their needs at the time and helps them complete their task with the least amount of effort. And, as they want to make sure they are where their customers are, marketers really ought to stop caring as well.
Running an Amazoogle strategy and using both platforms in tandem can deliver immediate benefits, and help to support your future marketing efforts by keeping your brand in front of your audience, wherever that audience chooses to be. This means more engagement, a higher ROI and additional growth potential.
So, for any marketers that are serious about an integrated, omnichannel marketing strategy, they need look no further than everyone’s favourite new portmanteau – Amazoogle.
Tim Van Der Bilt
Director of Marketplaces