The G-O-O-G-L-E Jennie Taming the Information Monster

 | September 25,2013 03:09 pm IST

Have you set your IE Homepage as Google? Do you search for local events on Google? Is Google for you a synonym for the Internet? Have you been wanting to know more on the Google IPO? Have you downloaded Google Utilities for your Desktop..

. If you’re in the above... then am sure you’re on your way to become a true... GOOGLEite...

 

Google has triumphed, within just a few years, with almost no money spent on marketing; they completely dominate the surfing patterns of the entire world. Just about everyone visits Google sooner or later during a typical day online. The number of people who interact with that friendly search page is astronomical.

 

But things change. Google’s going public. They’re hiring tons of people - some neophytes, some seasoned experts. They have access to tons of cash, legions of smart people and a brand that’s just waiting to do something more. So what should they do?

 

It’s easier to start by telling you what they shouldn’t do. They shouldn’t do what just about every company with a great original idea does, get stuck. A world-changing idea is rare indeed. When it happens, the founders are both happy and rich. Then they sell out - to investors, to Microsoft, to Wall Street.

 

Few Change the world a second time. Most haven’t bothered even once - surprisingly, APPLE did it three times (personal computers, graphical interfaces, digital music).

 

So, if you were Google and you wanted to compound the greatness, what would you do? That is the whole question.

 

I think Google is terrific, I use it a hundred times a day, but it’s very, very transparent. That, of course, is part of its appeal. Google doesn’t have a point of view or much of an experience. You tell it what you want and - boom - it disappears and replaces itself with what you asked for.

 

That’s a great experience, but it’s not the foundation for a great business. Being transparent in a world where there’s no real long-term barrier to entry is a risky business. If someone else introduced a quantum leap in search, something with a great value proposition, sexy interface and clever name, there’s nothing at all Google could do to keep people from walking out.

 

There’s no switching cost.

 

So that’s what I want to address. I want to talk about how to make Google permanent and powerful and profitable and useful, all at the same time.

 

Start with the fact that Google has no permission to talk to me. At all. They don’t even know who I am. The first rule of Permission Marketing is simple. After you’ve spread the idea virus, after you’ve got people excited about you, ask if you can talk to them in a way that they want to be talked to. So, if Google asks me if they can watch what I search for and email me every three weeks if they find something I might like, I’d say yes. So would 50 million other people.

 

Now if Google has the ability to find things on behalf of its audience , it could go to LG and say, "We have three million people who searched for ‘energy efficient refrigerator’ last week. If you give us a Rs. 5000 rebate coupon, we’ll email it to them."

 

Once they start tracking what happens after a search (having permitted by the people to do so), they can discover which pages are getting clicked on. From this, and from the history of the searcher, they can radically redefine what it means for something to be the "best" page.

 

Having done the above would make switching away from Google very hard. Building an engine better than Google would be almost impossible, because the competition won’t have the data stream.

 

The offer: Allow any Webmaster to include strictly formatted metadata that Google defines. Attach that data to links that Google controls. Call it a "plex" and have the symbol be a g in a circle, like this: © but with a G. Click on the plex and Google automatically takes you to the next page most likely to satisfy someone like you doing a search like that. Pages without plexes, naturally, won’t be as appealing to surfers, so quickly every Webmaster will install a plex, which furthers Google’s functionality and power.

 

Now that Google has a relationship with all its users and with millions of sites, it can start to truly unify the web. I think they ought to do this by inventing a web currency. And do it quickly and well, before Microsoft screws it up.

 

Lets S-T-R-E-T-C-H 

 

Google Gives me a personal Web page, maybe http://varun.Google.com. Track what I click on for a week and mine your data for what other sites you think I would like. Then give me the most integrated, up-to-date personalized recommendations (news, products, essays, etc) available on the Internet.

 

They should set up a service where they store personal documents for you and make them easily searchable for information you need - all online of course. Besides that, just keep perfecting that search technology. It still has a long way to go before it can parse language to realize exactly what it is I am looking for.

 

They should launch a telephone service - call them up with a question and they drill down the answer. 1800 - search - a - page, perhaps.

 

Google needs to go offline, with a BIGGGgg "O".

 

Next thing Google needs to do is figure out how to master the "Deep Internet" - those web sites that can only be accessed after using passwords or jumping through other hoops, sites that are currently invisible (at least at the content level) from most search engines. That might entail two offerings:

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