Search and the Connected Brand

Please read the original post published on iCrossing’s Great Finds blog on October 8, 2012.

When iCrossing started as a search-based agency, the search industry was still in its early days, and consumers were still working to understand the exact benefits they could receive from search engines. Since then, we’ve seen the search industry evolve faster than expected, with consumers’ expectations changing right along with it. iCrossing has evolved, as well, into a full-services digital agency that builds connected brands for CMOs. In coming weeks, my iCrossing colleagues are going to discuss on Great Finds the many ways that search has evolved from a utility to an important component in building a connected brand, or a close relationship between the brand and its audience.

Search is more than a way for consumers find essential information about the price of the new James Bond Blu-ray box set or the location of your closest Banana Republic. People are combining search and social media to share ideas and connect with brands and each other.

For example, Expressionery is leveraging the power of blogging and social plugins for customers to easily share visual, engaging content with their peers and other target consumers. By creating blog posts around popular products, common questions, and industry trends, Expressionery answers questions from searchers and receives higher search rankings based on their site authority. Those posts, and the benefits they provide, are then shared via the brand’s social networks to engage with fans directly.

In addition, Expressionery fans can share their favorite products on Pinterest, showcase their creations on Facebook, and connect with the blogging community through detailed, thoughtful commentary. Each tactic improves the popularity of the brand and the relevancy of its products through search.

Throughout the course of our blog series, you’ll read about how search plays an integral part in today’s online media consumption, including social, mobile, creative, and content-based tactics, both on a local and a global scale.

Stay tuned for more from the iCrossing blogging team as we review just how important search is to our goal of building connected brands.

Google improves social search — and why you should care

Please see the original post on the iCrossing Great Finds blog, published March 9, 2011.

Last month, Google announced the release of its updated social search results integration. This update took your social network connections into account when serving results in the Google search engine. As a result, when you look at a search engine results page, you can see relevant results as well as recommendations and shares by your network, including your Twitter followers and Flickr buddies. It’s easy to see how an individual can benefit from Google social search inclusions – but do businesses get any value?

In a word: yes. And marketers need to pay attention to what Google has done. This blog post discusses why, based on iCrossing’s deep knowledge of search and Google.

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