Happy Customers Are The Best Ads

I’m starting to think those of us who work in advertising are forever relegated to promoting inferior products.
This Wired story on Google’s decided lack of advertising isn’t helping. And how ironic is it that a firm which has sold $30 billion worth of ads to other companies since 2001, shuns the practice?
It’s not for lack of cash either. Google has remained frugal while accumulating $12.5 billion in reserves. Clearly, advertising is not something Google needs.
Nor does Starbucks.
Starbucks spent just $95 million on advertising last year, 49 percent less than Google did. Like Google, Starbucks made a name for itself by developing a distinctive product that quickly resonated with consumers whose enthusiasm became infectious.

About David Burn

Co-founder and editor of AdPulp. I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. I worked for seven agencies in five states before launching my own practice in 2009. Today, I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.


  1. Google and Starbucks are both innovative companies that communicate wonderfully to their customers, and painstakingly have created strong brands.
    In my opinion, their success speaks volumes to the power of creativity, and only threatens “creative” professionals who lack it.

  2. David: This has not gone unnoticed by many who proclaim that advertising is dead.
    Two other major companies, both of them new on the scene, that don’t really advertise are Amazon and Whole Foods. And while EBay does run some ads, they don’t spend a whole lot on advertising.