Archive for Google
NEW ORLEANS — I’m in Louisiana for the next few days with members of the Counselors Academy, a section of the Public Relations Society of America for owners and principals of public relations agencies. As usual, they have a great lineup of speakers and I’ll be sharing links and nuggets of information from some of the sessions.
With all the talk about social media (and all the so-called experts in the latest tools and tactics), speaker Jay Baer, president of Convince & Convert, delivered this reminder: “The goal isn’t to be good at social media…the goal is to be good at business because of social media.”
That’s a point worth thinking about as we take steps to weave social media into our routines which, by the way, need to be just that – part of our days: “There’s no magic answer to how much time to devote to social media,” he said. “You must commit to doing it regularly versus doing it in-depth. Speed and response time is important so be first, fast and mobile. A minute here, a minute there in the tiny gaps in the day.”
Jay also shared why your online/social presence – in addition to using traditional channels – is so important. A Google study (see the Zero Moment of Truth) shows that in 2010 people needed 5.3 pieces of information to make a purchase decision. In 2011, they sought out an average of 10.4 sources of information, including blogs, websites and social networks, before they decided. “When we’re almost ready to buy, that’s when we call,” Baer said.
“When we want to make a purchase decision, we research first.” So in addition to making sure your sales information is accessible and accurate, be sure that whoever answers that call is ready, because that’s an educated and motivated customer ready to talk!
There’s a lot of buzz going on in social media and PR circles about the launch of Cuil, a new search engine that some claimed would seriously challenge Google. Cuil (rhymes with “cool”) enjoyed a stellar day of publicity, with articles in The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, among others.
But the next day, the service got skewered by the pundits and users when it failed to live up to the hype. People ego-surfed their names and other test terms and widely reported the off-base results, which were not up to par with what they’re used to with Google searches. Even the name itself poses problems – forget the difficult pronunciation, a simple typo (culi) takes you straight to a porn site! Check out these headlines:
“Google-Wannabe Cuil: Worst. Launch. Ever.” (Silicon Valley Insider)
“Not So Cuil” (CIO Insight)
“Why Cuil is No Threat to Google” (TIME)
“Cuil shows us how not to launch a search engine” (CNET)
Lessons learned: spend more time in “beta” and concentrate on building a core base of users and reviewers as you refine your product and service, and then go for the home run publicity hits after you’ve worked out the bugs.
The PR team had about a day to bask in the glow of its Tier One media coverage – exactly the type of launch publicity every startup asks its PR team to pull off. Now they’re likely spending their days mopping up and looking for ways to counter the negative coverage that has likely turned off a lot of potential users.