In the blog Social Fresh, a computer science major who’s already launched a side career posting tech-savvy answers in online forums before he’s graduated, suggests that Facebook should keep an eye on Google+ because in three months’ time, it reached the 50 million user mark it took other social media sites to reach in three years (Brown, 2012). Elsewhere, Miranda Miller of Search Engine Watch, tapped into an infographic artist to create a mind-numbing visual picture of how Google manages to make $100M a day in search advertising. Meanwhile, David Wallace, a Search Engine, social media and infographic specialist, says so many TV viewers are using a “second screen,” the mobile device in hand, that the so-called “couch potato” is officially dead (Wallace, 2012). If, as Brown suggests, Google’s domination in search and its market share in mobile and mobile applications, have it primed for success in social media, we may do well to pay attention to Google’s development and its marketing mix (Brown, 2012).
Reflection: Nobody is denying that Google is late getting a seat at the social media table with its Google+. But the search-engine giant, which has spent years perfecting its integration of maps, calendar, blogging, advertising, email, cloud storage, gps, video (Google owns YouTube) and of course, Android, has a massive “footprint” in the consumer marketplace. Brown calls this Google’s “ecosystem” (Brown, 2012).
The primary advantage G+ has going for it is that it’s built on Google’s search platform and users who comment, blog, interact, etc. may eventually become intertwined with search results/rankings themselves. Google strives to make all of its tools seamless and interface with all its other user tools, and Brown reported that Google+ also has higher satisfaction ratings from users than Facebook does, at this very moment, despite the fewer users on G+ (Brown, 2012). Brown may not yet be a college graduate, but his analysis was well-formulated and presented, and I respect it for the many grains of truth I believe I can see within. I am definitely a dissatisfied Facebook user, turned off by numerous forced “upgrades,” visual clutter on every page, trivial gimmicks, and questionable information privacy policies. At work, meanwhile, Gmail and all its interfaced products (GoogleCalendar, GoogleDrive, Groups, GoogleMaps and now G+) “flow” in and out of my work email account, and I literally could not do my job without several of them.
To take that understanding, and THEN add in news that mobile devices have changed our culture such that the stereotypical “couch potato” is no more because users are busy on their “second screen” during TV shows and commercial breaks (Wallace, 2012), tells me that Google may very likely be ahead of the curve in its product development and marketing mix. Many of the second screen activities -looking up an actor or production details on a TV show or movie, searching for coupons on a product advertised (Wallace, 2012) – would likely start with a search, Google’s stock in trade. And literally so, given the Google AdWords “cash cow” generates $100 million a day with searches on finance, travel, shopping, jobs and education, telecom, and electronics the top six, in order of volume, says Miller, who has published some 60 e-books, 300 client projects and thousands of articles on marketing content management.
Perhaps Google is about to become the Proctor & Gamble of the online and mobile world, its numerous products quietly intrinsic to daily life?
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Brown, A. (2012, August 10). Should Facebook Be Worried About Google +? Retrieved October 27, 2012, from Social Fresh: http://socialfresh.com/facebook-google-plus/
Miller, M. (2012, October 26). How Google Rakes in over $100 Million in Search Advertising Daily. Retrieved October 27, 2012, from Search Engine Watch: http://searchenginewatch.com/article/2220372/How-Google-Rakes-In-Over-100-Million-in-Search-Advertising-Daily-Infographic
Wallace, D. (2012, October 26). The Couch Potato Is Extinct. Retrieved October 27, 2012, from Search Engine Journal: http://www.searchenginejournal.com/the-couch-potato-is-extinct/50736/