You may wonder why Google keeps trying to reinvent itself as a social service when it has already attained search dominance, but this is an important competitive leap for the company to make. Facebook's graph of "Likes" and in-depth data on the preferences of its users positions the social network to transform into a leading search engine and targeted advertising network.
Pete Cashmore, founder and CEO of social media blog Mashable, shared his thoughts on the matter in a recent column for CNN.com. Highlights:
- “Facebook's mountain of personal data could also provide the backbone of an ad network many times more targeted than Google's keyword-based advertising. If Facebook were to launch both a search engine and ad network, it could put a significant dent in Google's more than $23 billion in annual revenue.”
- “Google … is exquisitely talented at solving problems with algorithms. But when it comes to the touchy-feely stuff -- like human interaction -- it falls flat.”
- “If the search giant [Google] is able to pull off a half-decent Facebook rival, the fast-growing social network will finally have a competitor to keep its power in check.”