Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Who's in my social circle?

96% of my connections are online. There are only a few people; neighbors across the street, people who shop at the local grocery store, moms and dads from my kids school, who I'm not connected with online.

With more connections happening online, there's an obvious opportunity to make those connections profitable. Hence, the stampede of businesses to social media marketing. It's been proven that the strongest influences are people you know; family, friend, colleagues.

In the relentless pursuit to win in search, Google is leveraging social networks with Social Search. If you haven't heard about Google's Social Search ....basically Google is adding a search option. When you do a Google search, there's a tab at the top of the page that says "Show Options". Those options include blended search; video, news, blogs, recent results and such.

Join the new experiment in Google Labs and you will have the option of searching "Social". This query pulls from your connects via Twitter, gmail, Google Reader, Flickr, YouTube, etc. My initial thoughts: the usefulness is only as good as your connections. And I don't just mean the quantity of connections. It will become really clear that the quality of the connection will be more important than ever. I'll dive into this in my next post.

While everyone has a Facebook or Twitter account, very few people publish anything online. Writing a status update on your Facebook wall isn't the same as writing a blog post or an article.

Using Google Social Search puts a spotlight on two things: who is in my social circle and who is influential in my social circle.

What is your social circle?