Global search giant Google reportedly spent $154 Mn (INR 1,100 Cr) on advertising in India in 2018, making it one of the top advertisers in India.
A media report citing sources said that the company spent $75.7 Mn (INR 540 Cr) of this (almost half the total amount) on offline media advertising — including television, print, radio, and outdoor — till November 2018. It spent $46 Mn (INR 330 Cr) in 2017 on offline channel advertising.
Overall, Google India spent $154 Mn (INR 1,100 Cr) on media investments in 2018. Digging deeper, the report said that around 70% of its digital spend was on its own platforms and the remaining 30% went to other publishers.
The regulatory filings of Google India showed that its total ad and promotional expenditure in India was $97.7 Mn (INR 696 Cr) in the financial year 2018, an increase of 45% over the previous year.
The company roped in celebrity brand ambassadors such as former India cricket captain Rahul Dravid and actress Priyanka Chopra to promote its Pixel smartphones.
The report also noted that some of Google’s major advertising and marketing expenses were on consumer-facing services such as Google Maps, video-calling product Google Duo, payment app Google Pay, and hardware products like Google Pixel and Google Home.
Beyond the consumer space, in the last quarter, Google has been promoting its enterprise product — G Cloud — across print dailies. Google has also bought ground rights for the ICC World Cup for Google Home, starting from 2019 for three to five years.
Google said its campaigns run across a dozen product categories including video, hardware, payments, Maps, search and cloud. “…we are focused on engaging with users across the spectrum — from first-time Internet users to tech-savvy consumers,” a spokesperson reportedly said.
“In some cases, we operate in competitive segments such as digital payments, smartphones and Google Home and our campaigns are optimised for efficiency and scale,” the spokesperson said, adding, “Majority of our marketing budgets are focused on performance-driven medium (digital).”
The larger share of expenses on advertising and marketing has become a new normal in the industry, as the ways to reach end consumers continue to increase. In-app advertising, website advertising, ads before music or video streaming, sponsored ads on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, etc, continue to rope in click-through rates for companies as they attract user attention.
The boom in online advertising has also given rise to a new premium, ad-free model, as companies get users to pay if they don’t want to see advertisements. According to online market research portal Statista, FAANG companies (Facebook, Apple, Amazon, Netflix, and Google) collectively spent $1.9 Bn on TV advertising between January 2017 and February 2018, globally.
[The development was reported by ET.]