Google+ and the Next Evolution of Internet Marketing
Since the days of the early search engines, the science of Internet Marketing has always been a rapidly evolving field of specialization. Initially focusing on keyword selection and on-site search engine optimization (SEO) around those search terms, SEO has evolved to also now include a wide facet of off-site techniques for generating high quality back-links. As the search engines matured and online competition increased, we saw the introduction of paid inclusion advertising programs such as Google Adwords and Yahoo SEM which gave paying customers the opportunity to achieve a front page positions through bidding on key terms in a complicated online auctioning system, however again, as competition increased for this service, many terms became quite costly and as such marketers began to search for more cost effective alternatives for traffic generation.
With Facebook and the advent of social media, Internet marketers entered a new era for targeting their prospective customers. Moving away from conventional keywords alone, social media enabled marketers to form their advertising strategies around the individuals' rich demographic information, likes and interests. Through the Facebook platform, marketers could even harvest much of this information through applications and games development (such as the infamous vampire bite). Businesses could create platform specific pages which set aside the need for conventional email lists in place of a one-click user opt-in "Like" system that allowed the business to directly market to a prospective client via their Facebook news feed. The further expansion of Facebook's Like system into the wider community saw many websites, blogs, news portals and even major online players as YouTube adopting this technology in order to take advantage of the viral benefits, with user's likes immediately being communicated onto their Facebook wall, then correspondingly to their online network of friends. These developments led to Facebook surpassing even Google's traffic volumes in December 2010.
So with a decreasing market share to Google's core business, Ad words, the search engine giant knew they had to come up with something in order to break into the social media market. Since their initial failed attempt through the purchase of a small social media competitor Orkut, Google+ now appears to have enough bases covered in order to finally make this happen, or at least so this seems. Coupled also with the rising popularity of their mobile operating system, Android, and backed by their already well-established online search engine, users and internet marketers can expect to see unparalleled degrees of social media integration as the web shifts into a truly platform oriented and social media rich environment as part of this next evolution.Continued on the next page