If I haven’t blabbed your ear off about it already, OpenRain has a small business web presence product called the Online Business Platform. It’s a big deal as it’s fairly unique in many different ways.
Anyway, the upper service-level options include consulting and guidance on advertising with Google AdWords, which means we generally need access to the clients AdWords account to monitor progress and such.
The problem is that AdWords accounts have the idiotic restriction of allowing a given email address to be tied to only one AdWords account. In other words, firstname.lastname@example.org can be granted access to OpenRain’s Adwords account, but not client accounts nor other personal side-project accounts. (Google Analytics, on the other hand, allows for a single email address to manage multiple Analytics accounts in a much saner manner.) Considering the amount of revenue Google generates from paid Internet marketing, maintaining access to multiple AdWords accounts is a 7-layer stupidburger. I’m sure there’s a wonderful technical rationale that generates rainbows of technical applause, but as a user I couldn’t care less.
To answer the “How do I manage multiple AdWords accounts?” question, Google created My Client Center (MCC): essentially an AdWords account management aggregator part of an optional “Google Advertising Professionals” program. The kicker? To create an MCC account–and yes, it’s a separate account–you can’t use the email address for the account(s) you’re trying to aggregate. We ended creating a silly AdWordsIsStupid@example.com email group, and used that email address to access the MCC dashboard, which is turn gets granted access to your different AdWords accounts that are, again, all tied to different email addresses.
So when I say AdWords account access is a cacophony of stupid, I mean it. N+1 email addresses required-level stupid. Bad Google!