- Online Marketing
PCMag.com published a great article (from one perspective) about putting too much weight on social media, and the unfounded fears that go along with it as they relate to traditional search.
There is a buzz in the news about Larry Page’s threat to his employees that they will lose 25 percent of their bonuses if they do not get their act together regarding social media. I’ll avoid commenting on the concept of threatening employees as a management tool and let Larry find out for himself that it’s not a good idea. Instead, let me cut straight to the crux of all this.
Google is scared to death that Facebook will somehow eat its lunch. And the main fear is that a social media-based search can eventually usurp a conventional search engine. That’s what this is all about.
We’ve been hearing about social media-enhanced search everywhere. The premise is that you’ll be able to use your friends as some sort of search resource that would be many times better than the “slapdash” results you get from Google.
This is just bullcrap.
First of all, as a mental exercise, let’s just take Google and all search engines and destroy them. Now ask your friends to find something for you and see how far you get.
I suppose they could get some results by combing through various directories, but the bulk of navigation within the confines of the Web is done through search engines with their crawlers and bots. I don’t see anything changing that. Let’s be serious.
Returning Google CEO Larry Page, right, shown with co-founder Sergey Brin in 2004, aims to restore the sense of urgency and innovation that drove the company’s earlier successes, analysts say. (John MacDougall, AFP/Getty Images / October 7, 2004)
The Larry Page era has officially begun — with a management shake-up.
Just days after returning as Google Inc.’s chief executive, Page swiftly set the tone for how he would run the Internet search giant with a major reorganization of his management team.
Page is trying to restore the sense of urgency and innovation that drove Google’s prior successes, analysts said. The reorganization also puts him firmly in charge of the world’s largest Internet company in much the same way Steve Jobs runs Apple Inc.
“Larry’s coming out of the gate blazing,” said BGC Partners analyst Colin Gillis.
The 38-year-old co-founder promoted seven executives to run Google’s most important divisions. They will report directly to him in an effort to cut out bureaucracy and speed up decision making.
Page reorganized his management team the same week that Jonathan Rosenberg, a senior vice president who oversaw four of the executives, said he would leave Google.
Some analysts said Page was taking a much-needed step to reinvigorate Google as it faces mounting competition from nimble rivals for users and advertising dollars.
Page is also shaking up Google’s rank and file. He plans to tie 25% of employee annual bonuses to the success of Google’s social networking initiatives.
“He’s clearly not just going to be Eric Schmidt 2.0,” Gillis said.
Page was Google’s first chief executive before handing the reins to Schmidt in 2001 when the company was a barely profitable start-up with 200 employees. The pair, along with co-founder Sergey Brin, ran the company in an unusual power-sharing agreement, and for years Page called the shots on Google’s most important product initiatives.
On Monday, Page began calling all the shots for the company, which now generates nearly $30 billion in annual revenue and has more than 24,000 employees.
“Larry’s decisions will be under the microscope over the next year or two, but it will be a while before we can really judge him on his ability to run the company,” said John Lutz, senior research analyst with Frost Investment Advisors, which owns Google shares.
The promotions signal which areas will be a priority for Page. The executives Page elevated to senior vice president include Andy Rubin, who is in charge of Android mobile phone software; Salar Kamangar, who runs YouTube and video; Sundar Pichai, head of the Chrome Web browser and operating system; and Vic Gundotra, who is focused on Google’s social networking strategy to compete with a wave of young Web companies, most notably Facebook Inc.
Google seeing the value of Social Media might just be what it takes to get SMBs on board.
Google is known for being a trend-setting company that’s usually ahead of tech trends. The company has hit almost all the bases right with mobile (Android), search, shopping, mail, and so on, but the one thing it just can’t seem to wrap its head around is this social media thing. Google has tried time and again to jump on the social media bandwagon but has failed repeatedly with attempts like Google Wave and Google Buzz. However, Google’s new CEO, Larry Page, is set to change that, whether his employees like it or not.
Page sent out a company-wide memo Friday that surely led to unanimous sighs coming from employees. These aren’t sighs of relief we’re talking about. The memo alerted Googlers that 25 percent of their annual bonus will now be based on the success or failure of Google’s social strategy this year.
Last fall, Google gave all of its employees a 10-percent raise, and a $1,000 bonus as a way to move away from bonuses that were being based on an annual company multiplier. Google had been giving bonuses where the amount was multiplied by a number that was based on the company’s performance overall. However, that’s all changing in 2011 depending on how well Google does in the social media market. The multiplier will be between 0.75 and 1.25 according to the results.