I was recently quoted in an Agencyfaqs story on how real time search is a game changer for marketers and content creators.
I believe that real-time search is indeed a game-changer of search. The real power of Twitter lies not in being able to send and receive 140 letter messages, but in being able to search for tweets about people, brands, locations and events in real-time. Twitter realizes this: that’s why it has put search at the center of its redesigned homepage. Facebook realizes this: that’s why they are moving strongly towards a public status message oriented design. Google and Microsoft/ Bing realize this too: that’s why they are working hard to integrate real time status messages in their search results.
The ability to search real time status updates is already changing search behavior for early adopters like myself. I use Twitter search to discover what people are saying about a breaking news story, who else is present at the event I am attending and what are the early reviews for a movie that was released earlier in the day. The next big step is an ability to search for what my friends, people like me, or people near me are saying. As this behavior is adopted by the mainstream, I expect profound repercussions for both brands and publishers.
One important change is that search results will become both more dynamic and more personalized. Which means that search engine marketing will begin to look more like social media marketing. Suddenly, the depth, duration and keyword density of your content will begin to matter less and the freshness, relevance and proximity of our conversations will begin to matter more.
Along with the above changes in content search and consumption, I see a parallel change in content creation. When Blogger, WordPress, YouTube and Flickr made it easy to create and share articles, videos and photos, several consumers started thinking of themselves as writers, photographers and filmmakers. Still, the focus was on creating content, and it needed significant time and effort to create content, so the barrier was still to high for most.
Then, Twitter popularized the idea of real-time status messages and the content creation barrier came crashing down. Not only that, the nature of content itself changed, to conversations between people. So, people are more likely to organize themselves around conversations now, not content, and that’s a fundamental shift.
The self-perpetuating viral loop is at the core of word of mouth marketing and Twitter and Facebook have made it more potent than ever. Word of mouth has always been the holy grail of marketing and, now that it is more easy to seed and track than ever before, all marketing is beginning to look a little bit like word of mouth marketing.
Here is the full text of the story:
Points of View: Will real-time search affect the business of search?
Kapil Ohri | afaqs! | New Delhi, January 18, 2010
Google and Bing have introduced the concept of real-time search, which will also show results from recent Twitter, Facebook and blog updates. Is this the way to go now?
Chief digital officer, North and South Asia, Starcom MediaVest Group
For starters, it will increase the ‘volume’ of indexed pages and the natural search rankings for brands may change rapidly based on momentum built by social conversations. Brands will need to re-orient their approach for search as it will bring up organic results with social conversations, making it difficult for brands to get their ‘controlled content’ in front of people. They will have to try harder in organising content, integrating ’social elements’ and optimising it continuously.
While positive conversations will help in enhancing brand equity, negative ones will accelerate the erosion as bad news travels fast. Finally, brands need to create a seamless strategy for digital with search and social at its core by getting rid of specialist silos within digital or within marketing.
President, Training.com, NIIT
If you had searched, on Google for Copenhagen on the morning after the climate talks failed, you’d have first got a Google Map result and then one old item on the Climate Summit followed by a Wikipedia entry. Now, try the same search in real-time using Google’s Experimental Lab. You’d get links posted by the minute on BBC, Twitter, YouTube and a chronological list that grows longer before your eyes.
The action has been shifting from publishers to user-generated social media content. If you’re smart enough to worm your brand into digital conversations in real-time, you’re likely to get picked up. Not in weeks or months, as is the case with new sites and search engine optimisation (SEO), but in minutes. But this doesn’t mean that life is short for search engine marketing (SEM). It will take a while before everyone switches to real-time search by default. Also, things will be unpredictable in the short term.
Founder and chief executive officer, Pinstorm
SEO has become a low-value commodity activity, farmed out to individuals. Till a few years ago, all you had to optimise were text results. Today, a smart business will optimise results related to text, videos, images, twitter updates and blog entries – because the search engine results page consists of all of these.
I hope it will lead advertisers to increase their focus on social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook. Advertisers will find that if they are not on Twitter, their customers and rivals already are – and that the conversation is already going on there. Many brands tend to think of things in the TV paradigm – ‘run me a month-long campaign’. A social media campaign has to be 24 x 7 x 365.
Chief executive officer, 20:20 Social
I believe that real-time search is indeed a game-changer for search. The real power of Twitter lies in being Able to search for tweets about people, brands, locations and events in real-time. The ability to search real-time status updates is already changing search behaviour for early adopters like me. I use Twitter search to discover what people are saying about a breaking news story or who else is present at the event I am attending.
As this behaviour is adopted by the mainstream, I expect profound repercussions for both brands and publishers. An important change is that search results will become both more dynamic and personalised – meaning that search engine marketing will begin to look more like social media marketing. Suddenly, the depth, duration and keyword density of your content will begin to matter less and the freshness, relevance and proximity of our conversations will begin to matter more.
Cross-posted at 2020 Social: Because Business is Social.
As CEO of 2020 Social, I build and nurture online communities for Indian and international clients, connect their customers, partners and employees, and help them achieve their business objectives. Ask us how we can help you.
- DNA Story on Nowism, Twitter and the Real Time Web
- Potential Game Changer for Word-of-Mouth/ Social/ Viral Marketing: Duncan Watts Debunks Influentials & Tipping Point
- Why Live Search is Difficult to Monetize With Keyword Based Search Advertising