Google’s Social Search is now being given more weight and will be integrated into search results based on relevance. Google explains that, “relevance isn’t just about pages—it’s also about relationships… Today we’re taking another step forward—enabling you to get even more information from the people that matter to you, whether they’re publishing on YouTube, Flickr or their own blog or website.” If even search engine relevance is about relationships, then the business-to-consumer dialogue is more important than ever.
So what does this change mean for marketers? With increasing status with major search engines, your social media efforts will be more visible and worthwhile. It is stating the obvious to say that social media is playing an increasing role in consumers’ lives. According to eMarketer, in two years an estimated 62% of Web users and almost half of the US population at 48% (doesn't it seem like we've surpassed this mark already?) will be on Facebook. Businesses should be mirroring this trend by allowing social media to play an equally increasing role in their marketing mix to reach consumers on a level they will respond to. This is all about creating a sense of value and trust with the consumer that more intrusive and less selective forms of mass media aren’t able to do.