Google might (and should) advertise in U.S.

Despite being a global juggernaut roughly the size of Unicron, Google has long eschewed advertising in favor of word-of-mouth and PR. Now, the tech giant is rethinking its piddling $20 million annual ad budget and might soon hire an ad agency. According to The Wall Street Journal, Google is looking at Wieden + Kennedy and Taxi, among others. In recent months, Wieden has been running an ad campaign for Google in Japan, largely targeting rail commuters. Check out a gallery of the executions here. While I can’t read the Japanese text, it’s easy to tell that each ad focuses on the wide range of Google products that many casual Web users aren’t aware of. I’d imagine Google faces the same knowledge gap here in the States and over in Europe. How many people even know about Google Scholar, Google Audio Indexing or Google Health? With so many companies struggling to create a brand image that will help sell their products, Google’s biggest challenge is telling you how much they’re already giving you for free.

—Posted by David Griner