Have you heard about Universal Search yet? Well if you haven’t, you will soon.
Universal Search, as the name suggests, is Google’s response to the huge volume of different content now searchable online – web pages of course, but also podcasts, reference book pages, videos, forum posts, images, blog posts, RSS feeds and so on.
In a post entitled “The Best Answer is Still the Best Answer” Marissa Mayer, VP Search Products & User Experience, sets out the vision:
With universal search, we're attempting to break down the walls that traditionally separated our various search properties and integrate the vast amounts of information available into one simple set of search results.
Basically, this is good news for users (why search under different tabs for images, blogs, videos about Steve Jobs when you can now get all the results on one page) and good news for website owners who care about creating an engaging web experience because sites with regularly updated content ( blogs, podcasts, vodcasts etc ) are going to be better ranked than their non-dynamic counterparts.
Of course, there is also new challenges for brands and their agencies. This belief-defying, cringe-inducing Ernst & Young Recruitment Days video on YouTube is, thanks to Universal Search, the fifth highest result on a Google search for ‘Ernst and Young’ .
Not a “Happy Day” for E&Y coporate comms, and another great example of why HR and PR need to carefully monitor social media and listen to the conversation
Enjoy the below, but do check out the post on YouTube as the comments illustrate the risk to brands of collaborative media.