Report: Google Spent $213M Advertising Itself In 2011, Including $70M On TV Ads

google-tv-moneyThose TV ads that Google has been running lately are costing the company a pretty penny … well, millions of pretty pennies, to be more accurate.

According to a Wall Street Journal article, which cites data from Kantar Media, Google spent some $70 million dollars on TV ads last year in the U.S. alone. That represents about one-third of the estimated $213 million that Google spent promoting its own products and services in 2011.

That $213 million figure is almost 400 percent more than Google’s estimated $56 million spend in 2010.

The majority of Google’s ad spending was for online ads, but the company also promoted itself in newspaper, magazine and television ads. Kantar, via the WSJ article, says that Google spent about 1.2 percent of its U.S. revenue on advertising, comparable to the 1.5 percent that Microsoft and Apple spent.

Advertising Google+ Almost Everywhere

In the second half of the year, much of Google’s marketing seemed to center on Google+, as the company aimed to introduce its new social network to a wider audience.

In October, Google took out a full page ad in the New York Times to pat itself on the back after the Dalai Lama joined Desmond Tutu in a Google+ Hangout.


Google also ran several TV commercials for Google+, including one that aired during a heavily-viewed Thanksgiving Day NFL broadcast. There was also a memorable TV spot that began running over the Christmas holiday (and later aired during the Academy Awards broadcast) and showed The Muppets singing their way through a Google+ Hangout.

Google also ran a number of spots for Google Chrome, including an award-winning spot called “Dear Sophie” that actually promoted a number of Google products.

Of course, Google also used some unconventional means to advertise its own products, like the Google Chrome sponsored blog post campaign in December. No word on what Google spent on that, but it did cost the Chrome web page a ranking penalty that lasted about two months, not to mention some serious egg on the company’s face.

(Stock image via Used under license.)

Related Topics: Channel: Industry | Google: Business Issues | Google: Google+ | Google: Marketing | Top News


About The Author: is Editor-In-Chief of Marketing Land. His news career includes time spent in TV, radio, and print journalism. His web career continues to include a small number of SEO and social media consulting clients, as well as regular speaking engagements at marketing events around the U.S. He recently launched a site dedicated to Google Glass called Glass Almanac and also blogs at Small Business Search Marketing. Matt can be found on Twitter at @MattMcGee and/or on Google Plus. You can read Matt's disclosures on his personal blog.

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  • Pixelrage

    Insane desperation to force Google+ to be popular.

  • karl

    very important information indeed

  • Jerome Nava

    Paternity Testing

    yes still google + going popularity  ….

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