Category Archives: eTS Advisory Council

Inside Google: People

A 15th Anniversary Update: Google Insiders  


Shaun Aukland








A double round of kudos goes to Google’s Shaun Aukland. After four years as the unofficial “evangelist” for DMOs at Google in San Francisco, a friend to eTourism Summit and member of our Advisory Council, Shaun has been promoted to Account Executive. He takes on an expanded role looking after Google’s top travel accounts, working with senior executives at those companies.

In addition, Shaun was recently recognized with Google’s coveted  Trailblazer Award for his contributions to the travel industry, his clients and colleagues. In this peer-nominated process, roughly 2,400 people were eligible, with only 50 Googlers receiving the award.

What better prize than travel for a tourism evangelist? Shaun and his husband Michael were awarded an all-expenses paid trip to any Google office in the world for some best practice sharing. That narrowed it down to 40 countries where Googleyness  reigns. Shaun and Michael be doing a two-week trip to Australia and New Zealand in September, with a mix of Great Barrier Reef cruising, checking out cuddly koalas, taking a camper van road trip and meeting with colleagues.

And, in another update of Google eTS alums, comes more news out of a busy corner at Google San Francisco.


Hayley Lambert Young








Hayley Lambert Young has managed Google’s largest US and Caribbean state tourism boards, city CVBs, DMOs, and attraction advertisers for several years. She addresses strategic visions, new media opportunities and product partnerships. Hayley also provides consultative support across Google’s suite of advertising solutions: Search, Display, Video/YouTube, Mobile and TV.

When eTourism Summit met in New York City in 2010, Hayley scheduled a Big Apple  girlfriends’ vacation and paid her own way, as she couldn’t get travel approval to present for 20 minutes.  It was her first public presentation for Google, and while she was a little nervous, she received high ratings.

Congrats to Hayley , as she will now be moving on to handle the big money accounts, optimizing SEM for Visa and Wells Fargo.








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Filed under eTourism Summit San Francisco, eTS Advisory Council, Google

The View From Inside Google: Free Food and Free Tips

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Dateline: Downtown Chicago — Inside the Google offices on a Sunday afternoon.

This job does get us into some cool places. Observing the Google culture without Googlers present still delivers an extraordinary sense of place. We used the #IPW14 kickoff weekend to meet with the eTourism Summit Advisory Council regarding format, speakers and content for #eTS14. [Registration here.]

M&Ms and a Music Room
This particular floor is kitted out around a baseball theme. Two rattan swing chairs overlooking the Chicago skyline offer a contemplative corner; three treadmills alongside provide an alternative to get creative juices flowing. It’s more than the comfort of knowing that free food is always within 150 feet of every Googler. To ward off after-lunch blahs, the indoor running track indicates that 12 laps equals one mile. If music helps with self-expression, an electric guitar waits at the ready against the wall in the jam session room. The backs of the restroom door stalls have “Lessons in the Loo” posted to maximize every moment. A walkabout revealed such talking points as a vintage mobile phone collection and a Prohibition-era speakeasy bar.


Baseball in the Boardroom
In Waveland Field video conference room, the tech bells and whistles one would expect are present, but with a distinct lack of flashiness. Baseball mitts decorate the perimeter of a whiteboard. Yes, even at Google, functional 60s-era dry-wipes with an array of colored markers facilitate a brainstorming session.


From Beta to Basics
Everyone knows that Google and innovation are synonymous. We’ve heard Google executives say they’re not afraid to debut products in alpha or beta to see what consumers and businesses like and dislike. Nevertheless, when alpha turns into beta and beta becomes basics, it’s way past the hour to get your business on board.

While kicking around trends, dissecting insights, weighing pain points and generally engaging in macro visions with micro tweaking for our October eTourism Summit, we managed a bonus conversation with Advisory Council member and our host, Googler Shaun Aukland of the travel team.

Good Stuff From Google
Shaun shares his recommendations for the top three things a local business should do straight away, if not yesterday, to maximize discoverability in search. He ranks them, too.

1. Claim your Places for Business maps listing. Show up across the web. Be found on Google Search, Maps, Google+, and mobile devices. Make sure your business hours are accurate and kept up to date. Add photos and a good description.

2. Build your best Multi-Screen and Mobile Website. Ensure that it’s friendly and optimized for smart phone and tablet use. A seamless mobile experience is critical with the latest Google recommendations shown here.

3. Claim your Google Maps Business View. A 360-degree inside view of your business is enhanced by Google’s Street View technology. Shaun recommends getting started with a Google-certified photographer listed here by city, or a trusted agency. They’ll arrive with a tripod. Really, all you need to do is tidy up first. Like this:
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-Laurie Jo Miller Farr

Register now for eTourism Summit 2014. We may even slip a packet of M&Ms into your registration kit.

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Filed under eTourism Summit San Francisco, eTS Advisory Council, Google