Google – P&G Swap Employees To Learn From Each Other

    November 19, 2008

Sometimes you read something about a company or a business that simply gets it more than others. OK, so we know that in most cases Google does that. Sometimes they do it in ways that still amaze and make one say “Huh, that makes good sense.”

Fresh off the mantra from several folks at PubCon to embrace traditional media, an article appeared in today’s Journal that exemplifies that strategy by, you guessed it, Google and one of the most unlikely traditional marketing powerhouses, Proctor & Gamble. These two titans of their representative media strongholds have met in the middle in a unique way. They swapped employees. Both were bright enough and daring enough to recognize that they needed to know more about the “other side”.

I can’t urge you enough to read this article in its entirety. Rarely do I read something and throughout keep saying, “Holy crap, that is cool!” This one did that. It was pretty fascinating to read about the various “Aha!” moments that occurred on both sides of the aisle because there was actual sharing and learning taking place. While the new v. old media struggles that occur in public are often contentious this one appeared to be collegial. It’s when this type of environment exists that real growth takes place. Also, real learning occurs and relationships start. I suspect that we will be reading about this partnership and innovation between “Googlers” and “Proctoids” (by the way, P & G, this nickname for your employees is a bit uncomfortable for obvious reasons) for years to come.

Here are some of the high points:

  • P & G’s complete ignorance of the power of mommy bloggers and how that could impact Pampers sales. Of course, that gets a real “Duh!” from search marketers but Google seemed smart enough to not insult the traditional folks but aid them instead. Kill’em with kindness, I guess.
  • P & G’s willingness to allow their flagship brand, Tide, to be put in the hands of YouTube amateurs following their successful TV ad with a talking stain. (Note to you online only types; while you might laugh at the sales of laundry detergent you probably would envy the $3.5 billion (with a b) a year in annual sales it generates).

There’s a lot more. We as search and internet marketers should be reaching across the aisle more because if the deep pockets of a P & G have yet to embrace online, what about the rest of the traditional marketplace? Imagine helping these folks with efficiency and effectiveness during this economic climate. What an opportunity.

Go get’em.