Jessica Goodfellow
Mar 25, 2022

Meet Campaign's editorial team according to Google

Ever wondered what your search history says about who you are as a person, and how advertisers are targeting you? Presenting Campaign's editorial team, according to our Google ad profiles.

We have a diverse set of interests at Campaign.
We have a diverse set of interests at Campaign.

Major tech platforms like Google and Facebook have a transparency setting that allows users to see what the platforms have derived about them based on behaviour like search history, likes and clicks, which informs how advertisements are personalised.

To get an understanding of how accurate these advertising profiles are, we decided it would be fun to collate a profile of our editorial team using both accurate and off-the-mark factors in each of our Google Ad Settings

This is my parting gift to you, our lovely readers, as I take off on a new adventure. It's been a blast writing for Campaign Asia-Pacific and telling you all about my love of air filters.

Jessica Goodfellow
Deputy editor, media and technology lead

Accurate: I am 25 to 34 years old, in a relationship, I'm not a parent, I work in tech and finance (ish) at a large employer (250 to 10,000 employees). My interests include advertising and marketing, loads of computer, cloud and data-related categories, Jeeps (I happen to be in the market), pets and vets (I have a gorgeous doggo), and sandbox games (well done Google, I just wrote a story about The Sandbox).

Not accurate: I speak Gujarati (sadly limited to English and some rudimentary Spanish). I love air filters and purifiers, anime and manga, cats (I'm a dog person!), country music, football (sports is not my go-to), vacuums (I mean, we've all got one, but I wouldn't call it an interest).

One I wish were true: Intelligence and counterterrorism (makes me sound a lot cooler than I am!).

Surekha Ragavan
Editor, experiential marketing and PR

Accurate: I am 25- to 54-year old (whoa), female, in a relationship, I'm not a parent, I work in the tech industry (close enough) at a large employer (250 to 10,000 employees). My interests include books and literature, indie and alternative music, drama films, cooking and recipes, news, tennis, and dogs.

Not accurate: I love American football (perhaps it’s all those damn Super Bowl ads) and baseball. I love urban transit and matters related to transportation. Apparently I am also a budding DJ as I have been found to love DJ resources and equipment as well as dance and electronic music (sorry to disappoint, Swedish House Mafia fans). I simultaneously like sofas and armchairs, and greeting cards (hello retirement).

One I wish were true: Comics and animation. Beyond being a Pixar fan, I am sadly not well-versed enough in the world of graphic novels to verify this assumption.

Robert Sawatzky
Editorial director

Accurate: I am 45 to 54 years old with a family, the parent of a primary schooler and a teen. We have a pet (a dog now, though I like to stick up for cats). I work at a large employer (250 to 10,000 employees). My interests include ice hockey, winter sports (I’m Canadian, eh?) running and fishing. I like eating Japanese food.

Not accurate: I’m partial to Volkswagens and Audis. (I have fond memories of driving our baby blue VW Rabbit in my late teens but we don’t own a car and I never look for German brands when renting). I enjoy extreme and combat sports (raised in a pacifist sect, I have zero interest in boxing or cage fighting). I listen to metal, folk, dance and electronic music (to be fair it also listed four other kinds of music I do like).

One I wish were true: I’m big on home improvement repairs and plumbing (if only I was as handy as my Dad is).

Minnie Wang
Senior reporter, Greater China

Accurate: I’m female. I'm not a parent. I search in two languages, Chinese and English. I work at a large employer (250 to 10,000 employees), I have an advanced degree.

Not accurate: I am 45+ years old (no range, which means I made a good cover of my age). I work in the technology sector (this may be because I read Wikipedia to better understand Jess’s tech stories). I love dogs (I grew up with a cat, so I am definitely a cat person).

One I wish were true: Homeowner and married (thanks Google for bringing me home and marriage). 

Rahul Sachitanand
Associate editor

Accurate: Google says I am aged 35 to 64 (correct), a woman (um, no), and I can speak English and Hindi (sort of true). It correctly guesses that I am married, like jazz music and am not a parent. It also gets that I like pets (more correct for dogs, less so for cats) and having just moved countries, have been in the market for relocation services.

Not accurate: Google seems to suggest a wide interest in children and products and services around them including child car seats, children’s clothing, diapering and potty training and parenting. Having no kids, nor planning to have them, these were distinctly odd discoveries. Then there are other areas of interest, which don’t come close to my life in the real world—construction and maintenance; custom and performance vehicles; home and garden; and performing arts.

One I wish were true: Owning a Porsche (a vintage 911 turbo, ideally). Seems like a fantasy worth dreaming about.

Matthew Miller
Managing editor

Accurate: I am a 45- to 54-year-old male who's married and works for a company with between 250 and 10,000 employees. Unlike my colleagues above, I am a fan of both American football (go Packers!) and metal music (here's one of my favourite metal bands). Other interests Google got right include cooking; sci-fi books, films, and TV shows (recent favourite: The Expanse); family-oriented games and activities (recent favourite); politics; headphones (guilty, I have way too many); and pizzerias (but who doesn't love pizzerias?).  

Not accurate: Google says I am "not a parent", which will come as a surprise to both my wife and my 14-year-old son. Weirdly, Google also thinks that like my colleague Rahul (above), despite being childless, I am interested in children's clothing, baby care, child car seats, and "diapering and potty training". The Google version of me is into shooter games and combat sports, both of which hold no attraction whatsoever. Google also believes I'm highly interested in fashion, skincare, nailcare, beauty services, spas, makeup and cosmetics, and—most amusingly for anyone who's seen me—hair care. Clearly these results have been impacted by me watching too many shampoo ads as part of my job.

One I wish were true: "Homeownership status: Homeowner". The fact that Google thinks a journalist in Hong Kong can afford to buy implies some issues with its algorithms, although perhaps since it also thinks I'm childless this makes more sense.


Campaign Asia

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