AdAge got an interesting gift this labor day weekend in the form of leaked internal documents from Google which outline how much money companies spent on search advertising during the month of June.
As evidenced by the chart above, AT&T Mobility spent upwards of $8 million on keyword search advertising in June, no doubt a result of the iPhone 4 launch and an increased effort from AT&T to drum up new subscribers. Also not surprising is the $3.59 million in advertising spent by BP to help alleviate the avalanche of bad press aimed at their direction as a result of the massive oil spill earlier this Summer.
AT&T is the third-largest U.S. advertiser, according to Ad Age DataCenter; it spent $2.8 billion on measured media — almost $1.3 billion on TV alone — in 2009. The company declined to comment on its search spending.) Other big June spenders included Apollo Group, the company behind The University of Phoenix, online travel site Expedia, eBay and Amazon, which all spent over $5 million apiece on search.
The documents obtained by AdAge also show that Apple spent a tad under $1 million in search advertising during the month of June, which just so happens to be the same amount spent by Intel. Meanwhile, other notable brands like GM, Kodak, and BMW spent under $500,000 in Google search advertising during the same month.
So while interesting, the leaked documents certainly don’t tell a complete story. In other words, it’s hard to ascertain if Apple’s June expenditures on Google advertising represent the norm, or perhaps, if it marks an increase or decrease from the baseline. Apple is of course no stranger to spending a boat load of money on traditional advertising like TV ads and Subway posters, but with the controversy surrounding the iPhone 4 antenna, perhaps Apple was compelled to invest a bit more in search advertising to help run their own little spin campaign a’la BP.