Google increases focus on India

20 July 2009

BANGALORE: Google is promoting both its own services and the opportunities provided by the internet as a whole to advertisers, agencies and consumers in India, as the online giant attempts to further develop its operations in the country.

In 2008, Google introduced a range of bespoke tools in India, such as search systems based on text and voice messages for people without access to the web, but who do own a mobile phone.

Earlier this year, it also launched an "internet bus", which has travelled to various regions with the aim of providing potential web users with more information about this form of media.

Parminder Singh, business head of Google India, argued this process of "education" also extends to its customers in the country.

"The internet medium is evolving rapidly; therefore, there is need for a constant dialogue with our advertisers to keep them abreast of the latest developments," he said.

Singh is also attempting to further establish the importance of "integration" among this group, as, increasingly, "what you do offline has an impact online, and vice-versa."

Mobile is another area where the US firm is looking to boost interest among marketers, having previously made applications such as AdSense and Google Maps available for this channel.

"We are working with marketing and advertising agencies to make sure we are making the power of this medium well understood," said Singh.

"Mobile is all about instant gratification, so we ensured that the ad format we have also gives instant gratification for advertisers, and the advertisers are responding to it very well," he added.

The development of 3G mobile services in India will "accelerate" both internet penetration levels and Google's attempts to integrate services such as Gmail and its advertising tools with this platform, Singh continued.

Equally, Google, which owns Orkut, one of India's most popular social networks, and YouTube, the video-sharing website, is trying to demonstrate the merits of social media services as an advertising channel, particularly to reach a younger audience.

Data sourced from exchange4media; additional content by WARC staff