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Google touts $6.4B impact in Michigan

Estimate comes from use of tech firm’s search and advertising tools.

May 31, 2019
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A report by Google showed its advertising tools created an economic impact in Michigan of $6.41 billion in 2018.

The impact comes from Google’s search and advertising tools, Google Ads and AdSense, used by the 27,000 businesses, website publishers and nonprofits in Michigan.

The Google Ad Grants program provided Michigan nonprofits with free advertising worth $4.9 million in 2018.

Google did not provide more specific statistics involving regional breakdowns.

The report also noted that more than 600 Michigan residents are employed full time by Google, with offices in Ann Arbor and Detroit.

In the U.S., Google had an impact of $335 billion for more than 1.3 million businesses, website publishers and nonprofits. Google employs more than 64,000 people full-time at offices and data centers in 21 U.S. states.

The economic impact was measured as the sum of Google Search, Ads, AdSense and Ad Grants.

For businesses, the value of the programs comes from clicks on search results and ads minus cost of advertising, estimated as $8 of profit for every $1 spent.

Google said it measured the total number of clicks on ads posted by U.S. advertisers in 2018 and observed that when a business puts an ad on Google, an average of more than 35% of clicks on that ad come from outside the country.

Google said small businesses that use advanced digital tools, such as online advertising and data analytics, experienced revenue growth four times greater than less digitally advanced businesses.

Andrew Kovatch, vice president of digital strategy for Grand Rapids-based Media Place Partners, said these tools by Google and other platforms are pieces of a bigger marketing picture.

The tools by Google are among a wide variety of digital and traditional marketing packages Kovatch said Media Place Partners curates for client companies.

“We look at it as a very holistic type of approach, to where there’s not going to be one magic bullet,” Kovatch said.

He said different types of businesses and organizations have different types of consumers who also access advertising differently, so their clients get individual recommendations for the best combination of advertising tools.

While most of the marketing landscape is shifting to be more digital, Kovatch said some incorrectly believe the best campaigns are solely online.

While only digital clicks can be tracked directly, Media Place Partners has found that traditional forms of advertising often have a benefit digitally — someone sees a TV ad for shoes, for example, and then purchases them through a mobile app.

“A lot of people in the traditional space think it’s dying. However, it’s very similar to the times when the radio was around and then TV came out,” Kovatch said. “It just evolved and changed and became a new tool in the toolbox.”

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