Everyone has their favorite pundits for news and commentary to get a grasp of the world spinning around them. For those of us at Forthea, this usually includes the business and technology fields, which interactive marketing dwells between. Getting to the point, Google has come under a lot of public scrutiny as a company lately.
It’s apparent why they’re under the microscope. The Mountain View company has continued to dominate internet search, introduced a wildly popular challenger to Apple’s iOS mobile devices and started a unique social network. Now which of those three do not belong together? Google has weathered wry skepticism and a cool reception to Google+, its entrant into the social platform arena. As the joke goes, only Google employees use Google+.
In the midst of pundits questioning the merits of Google+, Google has been gradually and quietly rolling out changes to ensure a place in the social arena. Most of us could survive without a Google+ account. But could you survive without Google the search engine? The absence of Google would probably take more productivity hours than its Pacman Doodle.
Recent news indicates brands will need a Google+ page for local listings. Furthermore, significant weight in algorithms might be given to those with more +1s, Google’s social validation inspired by a Facebook like and Twitter Favorite or Retweet. Google is harnessing the inertia of an essential internet stalwart – its search engine. As a marketer, we know that leading the pack in search is vital to online growth and success. By intertwining these elements, it seems as if Google is forcing relevance upon the social platform by holding its search product hostage to activity and engagement in its social network.
The situation is simultaneously a mix of brilliant, clever, and unfortunate. It will be interesting to see if organizations roll with the changes as easily as a Facebook design change. In the off chance that brands backlash from the idea, the search market could see a big shakeup.
(Image found here.)