Google recently launched its new default search results deemed "Google Search Plus Your World," which is already creating quite a controversy in SEO circles and beyond. Regardless of if searchers like the results, the reality is that Google has placed great emphasis on Google+ and is likely hoping that GSPYW will increase Google+ adoption.
Last week Google officially announced it would be retiring its Urchin Software web analytics technology -- a move that was a long time coming.
Last week, I was talking to someone about what role a digital agency would play in the future. We went down all the usual paths and came up with the usual answers, but afterward the question still lingered. What is our role in the future? I'm reasonably certain it won't be the same as our role in the past.
As some of you may know, I am on the international board of directors of SEMPO, and recently we weighed in on the debate about SOPA and PIPA in the House and Senate respectively. We became aware of this issue going back several months, and we sent the association's position to key individuals in Congress. The good news is that Congress listened, as many direct responses were received with regards to our position. But the rest of this column involves some of my personal thoughts on what has transpired over the last few months with these bills.
Bing introduced a new ad campaign last night during the NFC Championship between the San Francisco 49ers and the New York Giants. The campaign tag -- "Bing is for doing" -- is very similar to a campaign rolled out last year by Lenovo ("For Those Who Do"). Both campaigns are focused on those who aren't just passive consumers of media or information, but who make it their mission to get something done.
Humans hate making mistakes. But the fact is, making mistakes is an essential part of being human. Somehow, we have to learn to live on the edge of this paradox. For digital marketers, our entire industry is balanced on this particular precarious precipice. There are a few rules of thumb to "screwing up" successfully:
In an effort to make tasks "easier" for us, software companies have been adding features to make even the smallest tasks "simple." Some of these changes, I believe, are misguided and often lead to user frustration -- or perhaps it's just me? Google is doing the same thing. For some time now, webmasters and SEOs alike have complained that Google actually has been editing the title link that appears in search results, not always using the title tag of the ranked page.
Google introduced Search Plus Your World last week -- and before the virtual ink was dry on the blog post announcing its new feature, the antitrust forces were gathering in the streets, pitchforks at the ready. If there's a crime in this newest twist to Google's search results page composition, it's the spectacularly bad branding for the new offering. ("Google Search plus Your World"? Seriously? Would it cost so much to hire a good product marketing person?)
The new year presents a blank slate, and there are plenty of opportunities for search and social marketers to start fresh and pursue new paths. These may not all be "new" paths, per se; some are likely best practices that have been around for a while but have been placed on the backburner for any number of reasons. Let's do a bit of reprioritization this year. Let's reset our approaches to program management. Let's take advantage of the promise of new beginnings.