Last week, I got an email from my Google Adwords rep, who issued a playful challenge: “You’re qualified, why don’t you take your Adwords Certification exams?”
So without studying, I clicked three links and found myself starting a 100 question online exam. An hour later, I learned my fate: I met the 80% minimum score on the Google Adwords fundamentals exam.
I’ll take one more test before year’s end, and if I pass, I will be Adwords Certified. What does that mean? Hopefully, it means Google will send me referrals to manage PPC accounts for new clients. But it also gives my existing clients the confidence that I am a Google Adwords expert.
The exam is aimed at making sure online marketers understand advanced marketing principals, but more importantly to Google, that we have a deep knowledge of how to get the most out of Adwords for our clients.
For those who don’t know, Adwords is Google’s online advertising platform – it’s the product in the company’s portfolio that has made it one of the richest in the world. Online advertising now exceeds network television, and since 75 percent of searches happen on Google, it’s where the savvy spend at least a portion of their advertising budgets.
I have managed Adwords campaigns for five years, representing clients that include a multimillion-dollar publishing house, a billion dollar office furniture manufacturer, and many small businesses.
I will have to pass the exams every year to keep my certification valid. Whether I re-up my certification will depend largely on how many clients Google sends my way.
For the time being, it just feels good to pass a difficult exam. The last time I took a test of any kind, was 20 years ago at Ohio State.
At least I haven’t lost my mojo.