Community is Google’s Achilles Heel

    March 20, 2006

BusinessWeek covers the Google/Nike soccer tie-up in more detail. There’s one passage deep in the story that popped off the page…

“The new site is Google’s latest effort in the social-networking space where the search giant has struggled. It owns Orkut, but outside of Brazil the site has been considered a flop. Building an interactive community has been one of Google’s glaring weaknesses.”

So that’s what this is all about. Google can’t build a vibrant community on its own so it is tying up with marketers instead to launch centers of gravity around specific interests. Why? Simple. How do you spell community? Yup, Yahoo. Not only do they know how to build community, they know how to buy it.

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Steve Rubel is a PR strategist with nearly 16 years of public relations, marketing, journalism and communications experience. He currently serves as a Senior Vice President with Edelman, the largest independent global PR firm.

He authors the Micro Persuasion weblog, which tracks how blogs and participatory journalism are changing the public relations practice.