In a landmark achievement this year, Membrana Media successfully obtained the highly coveted status of Google Certified Publishing Partner (GCPP). This milestone has been a key objective for our company, reflecting our commitment to growth and excellence in the ever-evolving digital advertising landscape.
Choosing to become a partner with Google and joining the GCPP program was a strategic and rational decision. Google stands as one of the giants in the advertising industry, and collaboration with them opens up a wealth of opportunities to expand our advertising resources. This aligns perfectly with our ambitions to venture into global markets.
Collaborating with such industry giants demands time and effort to build mutually beneficial relationships and achieve high-quality standards. Membrana Media understands the significance of this effort and is dedicated to maintaining these standards.
Advantages of GCPP Status
Obtaining GCPP status has provided us with several invaluable advantages:
Recognition of Competence and Professionalism:
GCPP status serves as recognition of our competence and professionalism in the realm of advertising on Google's platform. It affirms our deep understanding of working with Google and our ability to deliver high-quality services to our clients.
Access to New Opportunities:
GCPP status grants us closer access to new opportunities presented by Google. We receive support and access to resources that enhance our efficiency in advertising on Google's platform.
Differentiating as a Certified Partner:
GCPP status allows us to differentiate ourselves as a certified Google partner. This creates an additional layer of trust among potential clients and partners, recognizing our expertise and ability to provide high-quality advertising services on Google's platform.
Potential for Collaboration and Co-Marketing:
The GCPP status also opens doors to collaboration and co-marketing opportunities with Google itself. This can prove invaluable in attracting new clients and leads.
Boosting Reputation and Authority:
While GCPP status does not directly impact our technological stack, its primary benefits lie in the reputation and authority it brings. These advantages enable us to attract more clients and partners. In one of the categories within the Google Partners program, Membrana Media has even secured a place in the top 50.
The Application Process
Typically, the journey to becoming a Google Certified Publishing Partner involves several key steps:
- Application Submission: The initial step is to apply for participation in the Multi-Channel (MC) program to become a Channel Partner.
- Qualification: After becoming a Channel Partner and spending a year in the MC program, you become eligible to pursue GCPP status. To qualify, your Quality Score must be greater than zero.
- Access to Partner Portal: Upon successful qualification, your company gains access to a specialized partner portal provided by Google. This portal houses information, tools, and resources for working with Google.
- Examination: A mandatory part of the GCPP journey involves taking an online exam. On the partner portal, you must complete a 59-question exam covering topics related to the MC program, the utilization of Google Ad Manager, and other Google advertising products. The exam has no time limit, but you must answer at least 85% of the questions correctly.
- Team Participation: To earn GCPP status, a company needs to have a specific number of employees (typically three or more) who have successfully passed the exam. In addition to myself, our Demand Performance and Monetization Manager, and currently, our Chief Product Officer, have completed the online exam.
- Collaboration and Support: The process of attaining GCPP status was primarily managed by me and Julia Kuznetsova, our Demand Performance and Monetization Manager. We were key figures in coordinating this process and liaising with Google. However, the participation and support of the entire team, including our Chief Product Officer, played an invaluable role in preparing for and meeting Google's requirements.
- GCPP Status Granted: After successfully passing the examination and fulfilling other company requirements, Google designates the company as a Google Certified Publishing Partner. This finalizes the process of becoming a Google partner.
- Quality Maintenance: It's essential to maintain a consistently high level of quality and efficiency in advertising campaigns for clients. If a partner's Quality Score drops, it could affect their GCPP status.
Challenges and How to Maintain GCPP Status
Achieving and maintaining GCPP status comes with its own set of challenges and responsibilities:
The difficulty in obtaining GCPP status lies in Google's rigorous standards and expectations. Demonstrating consistent results in collaboration with Google, maintaining high product quality, and adhering to ethical working practices are paramount. Many companies may face a prolonged waiting period for Google's approval.
However, our journey was relatively swift, taking approximately three months from expressing our desire to achieve this status to its actual attainment. In my opinion, proactivity and persistence played a pivotal role. We did not passively wait for Google to approach us with this opportunity, as waiting for things to happen is not our style.
How to Avoid Losing GCPP Status and What Comes Next
Losing GCPP status is possible due to unsatisfactory performance and violations. As previously mentioned, the primary factor in obtaining and maintaining this status is the Quality Score. If the quality of our work significantly deteriorates, resulting in a decline in our Quality Score, Google reserves the right to reconsider our GCPP status. Quality Score is typically updated weekly, allowing us to monitor its dynamics.
The key idea is for partner companies to consistently maintain a high level of quality and adhere to Google's standards throughout their partnership.
Specific violations that can lead to the loss of GCPP status include significant policy violations or a substantial volume of fraudulent activities.
The process of losing the GCPP status can be long-term. Google may provide additional time for rectifying issues, so there is no need to panic prematurely. The essential aspect is to uphold the quality of work at the desired level and adhere to Google's standards.
Benefits and Opportunities of GCPP Status
GCPP status comes with an array of benefits and opportunities:
1 Account Management and Executive Support:
- Assigned strategic partner manager.
- Access to partner-exclusive products and capabilities.
- Regular business reviews.
2 Technical Support and Training:
- Product roadmap insights and early access to features.
- Customized training programs.
- Exclusive access to the learning platform.
- Access to partner-only resources.
- Membership in the global Google Certified Publishing Partner community.
3 Business Development and Marketing:
- Partner badge.
- Inclusion in the Google Partner gallery.
- Product certifications.
- Exclusive co-marketing opportunities with Google (publisher events).
- Access to marketing materials and support.
Initially, achieving premium partner status was a pleasant accomplishment, but I soon realized that within Google's program, there are countless opportunities for further growth, various statuses to attain, and it's an ongoing journey. They continuously refine and expand the partner statuses, creating a sense of exhilarating pursuit for new achievements.
The recognition of our company and its quality is akin to earning a Michelin star for a restaurant. Both these statuses signify reputation and image, but they need to be consistently upheld to maintain high recognition and reputation in the digital industry.
That's why we are committed to strengthening our partnership with Google. Recently, Julia Kuznetsova, our Demand Performance and Monetization Manager, attended a Google conference in Ireland. Such events are a regular practice for us, as we continually receive invitations and actively participate in such gatherings.
Membrana Media's Future Plans
Our plans for the future, within the context of obtaining Google Certified Publishing Partner (GCPP) status, reflect our constant drive for achievement and our desire to elevate the recognition and effectiveness of our collaboration with Google. We firmly believe that achieving the Google Certified Publishing Partner status is just the first step toward reaching greater heights.
Our next ambitious goal is to achieve "Premium" status in partnership with Google. Of course, I understand that reaching such a prestigious position will depend on our ongoing growth and improvement of skills in working with Google. However, I also believe that working collaboratively with Google will bring mutual benefits and positively contribute to the development of our business and partnership relations.
In conclusion, becoming a Google Certified Publishing Partner is a significant milestone, but it's just the beginning of an exciting journey. Membrana Media is dedicated to continuous growth, maintaining high standards, and unlocking new opportunities in the dynamic world of digital advertising.