May 26, 2009

Google vs Facebook – the search is on!

Ayelet NoffOnce upon a Myspace time, I tried searching for a few band profiles inside the Myspace network. I didn’t get the exact spelling and spacing right, and ended up on a total search maze. What a disaster! From there on out, I would actually leave Myspace, go back to Google and search there for a Myspace profile. Strange and sad thing is, Myspace search is actually “powered by Google.” Perhaps Myspace has made improvements in this area by now, but I wouldn’t know because I will probably never try again. A year or so later when Facebook features started trumping Myspace, so did its profile search. Facebook currently maintains a dominant position when it comes to people search. However, when the search involves anything outside of people, Facebook search is known to be one of the most frustrating experiences ever. Now after the fairly recent arrival of Google profiles, the fight for the most effective profile aggregator begins.

Google has already begun to show Google profile results at the bottom of U.S. name-query search pages, so if you couldn’t find a reason to create your own Google profile a month or so ago, perhaps this will spur the urge. After all, most of us want to be found on a Google search, right? Google also claims to offer greater control over exactly what people find when they search for your name. So, I think it’s safe to say that Google is most likely looking to compete with Facebook and Linkedin for searches on names, locations and employment, and if Google will add the tool to link to friends profiles, they will have pretty much created a basic social network. Not bad, but can they really compete with the well established social network kings? Uh hum, Twitter?

Last year around election time, Google teamed up with Twitter to create a live moving mapplet of everyone’s political tweets. Recently, Google added a tip in your Google profile editor, that you should use Twitter to promote your Google profile. Now, there are rumors now that Twitter and Google are in serious talks. What does this mean for Google? If Google can maneuver its way into a Twitter collaboration that could beat Facebook, would that churn out a new winner?Ayelet Noff is a partner in and founder and Co-CEO of Blonde 2.0, an award winning digital PR agency with branches in Boston and Tel Aviv. Contact Ayelet via The Blonde 2.0 website , email, or follow her on Twitter and Google Plus.

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