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The Google Online Marketing Challenge (GOMC) is perhaps the leading in-class competition across the world. By 2008, it had about 8,000 students. In the following year, 10,000 students participated in GOMC from 57 countries. In 2013, the number of students who participated in GOMC was roughly 15,000. The GOMC provides undergraduate as well as graduate students with hands-on experience within the fastest rising advertisement medium. Keyword advertising (AdWords) provides an integral revenue stream to the main search engines like Yahoo and Google. Since this keyword advertising (AdWords) constitutes a chief business model in the near future, online advertisement is a major revenue (Donaldson and O’Toole 2007). These students work in teams handling real clients, as well as spending real monies. Google positions GOMC as the academic exercise, which has problem-based learning. GOMC benefits academics, students, universities and businesses although it targets academics. Today, the challenge attracts about 6,000 clients, 700 universities as well as 30,000 students from about 60 countries.
GOMC’s strengths include the innovation culture of Google. This challenge provides a chance for students to compete amongst one another and experience cooperation with real clients, which enhances innovation. Additionally, such customer experience is very important as it ends up benefiting not only the clients but also many businesses. Through keyword advertising, Google earns a huge chunk of its revenue from this source. Therefore, GOMC gives Google with a chance to develop this income source continuously. Another major strength of this challenge is Google’s recognition since it is a global brand. It is also important to note that GOMC provides an untapped potential. GOMC attracts about US$200 worth of sponsorship from every client in three weeks.
The weaknesses associated with GOMC include patent litigations and unprofitable products. Another weakness is that Google does not provide this learning opportunity to all nations. This denies innovative students an opportunity to display their competencies and skills. The rationale for this competition is to bolster Google’s total revenues. Microsoft is Google’s main competitor. The company relies hugely on online advertising. In the long-term, it possibly will have sluggish income growth. It is important that GOMC push competition back to avert losing out the market. It is also important to do away with all the unprofitable products and programs. Lastly, patent litigations pose the greatest threat for GOMC. Breaching of patents as well as intellectual property rights culminates to huge financial costs and time wastage. Moreover, Google focuses more on litigations rather than innovation.
The opportunities include the growing number of internet users. Innovative technologies ensure that Google keeps pace with technological developments. Moreover, GOMC provides a chance for stakeholders to collaborate with Google in promoting its technological initiatives. Google has also given premium to patents acquisition. Ideas generated from GOMC are patented. In 2012 alone, Google added about 1,151 patents. This enhances innovation culture. It is possible to expand the GOMC program to encompass more students. This way, through GOMC, Google has the potential of reaching out to as many clients as possible. The competition also exposes students to an avalanche of ideas, which in turn provides prospective clients with an opportunity to get ideas. There are innumerable digitizing opportunities for Google that can arise from GOMC. It is possible to increase the learning outcomes for the competition.
GOMC’s threats include antitrust laws. There are many budding competitors for this challenge. Google should be wary of other technological giants like Amazon, Microsoft and Yahoo. Additionally, GOMC does not provide the requisite motivation for all the students in the challenge. This robs the organization great ideas. It may also lose out potential clients to its rivals. Moreover, Google’s GOMC program does not essentially focus on beating other competitors. Wading off competition is important in business (Meyerson 2005). Again, GOMC does not address the underlying challenges facing economic digitization. Statistically, GOMC is meant to increase Google’s total revenues by introducing innovative and newfangled AdWords. Put differently, the competition is tailor-made to increase online advertisement. If a competitor were to introduce an all-encompassing and wide-ranging program, the Google’s GOMC would not rival such programs. Failure to continuously modify the program is also a major threat.
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The political environment surrounding GOMC disadvantage the challenge. Owing to the fact that the participants in this program hail from various countries, GOMC raises politically sensitive topics through the competition. In some countries, for instance, there are Internet Protocol (IP) addresses that are banned. It is important to tailor Google AdWords in a manner that adheres to an individual country’s political persuasions.
Economically, GOMC receives about US$200 from each of the client. Google attracts approximately 62% of online internet searches. About 95% of Google’s revenue comes from keyword advertising. This challenge is an exciting and fun competition that assists students in learning experimentally. Owing to the fact that online advertisements are Google’s main revenue earner, GOMC becomes an important program for Google. While it stands to benefit the participants, Google also benefits in huge manner. It is important to consider economic and political factors in devising marketing strategies (Cravens and Piercy 2005).
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Socially, web usage and access is distributed both geographically and demographically. In the world, about three-fifth of the internet users are male while two-fifths are female. Through provision of education to the GOMC students, the importance of keyboard advertising is underscored. Many cultural factors influence online advertising that needs redress in GOMC competition.
Technologically, it is important to consider all technological factors that come in handy while designing online advertising. GOMC gives the participants a chance to make appropriate of the technological advancements.
Environmentally, the products from GOMC aim at creating a friendly ecosystem. This is in tandem with the need to create a green economy (Ferrell and Hartline 2011). The products from the program are, therefore, environmentally-friendly.