Google Recognizes Darrin Widick as a Qualified Google Advertising Professional

Kansas City, MO (Feb. 9, 2005) – Darrin Widick, president of Kansas City advertising agency Widick Marketing Inc., has completed Google’s certification process and is now recognized by the Mountain View, Calif. web property (Nasdaq: GOOG) as a Qualified Google Advertising Professional.

Widick is among the initial group of 100 international recipients of this designation. The Google Advertising Professionals (GAP) program, launched in fourth-quarter 2004, is a resource for advertisers and third party marketers skilled at managing Google’s AdWords cost-per-click program.

In a Feb. 1, 2005 webcast of Google’s Q4 earnings release — in which the company announced a triple-digit year-over-year percentage increase in sales — Google co-founder Larry Page highlighted the certification program as one of three recent initiatives aimed at enhancing the firm’s business relationships.

Widick says the GAP program does just that.

“While I’ve gained extensive knowledge through seminars and on-the-job training managing Google AdWords accounts over the past two years, the GAP curriculum has solidified and enhanced my skills,” Widick says. “Our clients will benefit from the time, money and management efficiencies inherent in having a Qualified Google Advertising Professional managing their online advertising program.”

One such client is Innovex Golf Company, a golf club manufacturer based in Leawood, Kansas. President Kevin Downey says Widick’s expertise has helped Innovex compete against formidable opponents.

“As a start-up firm selling against the major players of the golf world, you need an edge,” Downey says. “This past year, we called on Darrin’s online advertising expertise to help us cost-effectively introduce our company to a national and international marketplace. We could never compete with multi-million-dollar offline marketing budgets. But Darrin has helped us level the playing field online.

“We’ve been able to create an understanding among the golfing community that we’ve got a pretty good golf club. We owe a lot of that success to Darrin’s knowledge of online advertising, and the Google certification serves to validate our confidence in him.”

Another firm which has benefited from Widick’s AdWords skills is Kansas City-based Dobies Healthcare Group. Through a long-standing partnership with the healthcare marketing firm, Widick has provided online marketing services and has supported several Google AdWords campaigns that drove visibility for hospital clients of Dobies.

“Online marketing is vitally important to our hospital and healthcare clients,” says Carol Dobies. “Having Darrin’s expertise certified by Google lends credibility to our efforts and ensures that our clients have access to a knowledge base that is internationally recognized as being at the forefront of the industry.”

To achieve the GAP designation, Widick’s efforts included:

  • Managing multiple client advertising programs through an advanced AdWords account, known as My Client Center.
  • Gaining additional AdWords knowledge with comprehensive, web-based training and passing a 90-minute, 104- question online examination to demonstrate a firm grasp of the Google AdWords product.
  • Building and maintaining a total advertising spend exceeding minimum requirements.

Besides Google’s recognition as a qualified, tested AdWords professional, the certification allows Widick to display the official Qualified GAP logo, serving as a universal symbol of skills and expertise in the online advertising community. Additional information about the AdWords program is available at