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Google+

‘Why do I need Google+ when I already have enough social networks to manage?’ writes one confounded blogger. You may sympathize with this sentiment and even feel like a G+ reject, unable to snag an invite to the latest social network. Google+ is currently the platform of choice for the early-adopter types- digerati groups of geeks, bloggers and Silicon Valley’s finest- a far cry from Facebook’s near ubiquitous use with Mom and your seventh grade P.E. teacher.

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Surprise!, Google has gone social—again. Google has made yet another foray into the social scene, but this time they made a smarter decision and modeled their new +1 after the already uber successful Facebook Like button. After several unsuccessful attempts, including Orkut, Google Romance, Picasa, Friend Connect, Lively, Wave, Social Search, and Buzz. 

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What’s interesting about the growth of social media is that it has grown largely independent of search engines. That is, social networks have been fairly closed off places for the majority of their existence. That means that all the information and links shared through social networks wasn’t directly boosting your SEO. It was helping boost your brand name recognition and perhaps helping customers find ways to engage with you brand, but it wasn’t helping your Google rank.

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Google is no longer a search engine; Google’s zeitgeist has permeated very aspect of online life, including social media. To speak to the breadth of Google’s online influence, it is foreseeable that in the very-near future we might all be using Google’s cloud-based Chrome operating system to load our Google Chrome browser to do a Google search or to check our Gmail email, all the while social networking on Google Buzz. Needless to say, Google is an important part of our Internet-based lives.

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As the Internet becomes the next great social experiment, the web is responding in kind. The two major search engines, Bing and Google, are both becoming more social and beginning to pick up on social cues. The first step that started the process was the addition of Google’s Social Search.

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