Thanks to Bing and Google, the concept of real-time search is going mainstream, with content created just seconds ago showing up in search results on a regular basis. A session at SES Chicago titled "Update on Real Time Search: I Want it Now!" tackled how marketers can address this phenomenon.
Coverage of SES Chicago will continue. Stay with WebProNews for more notes from the event this week.
Rob Garner, Senior Strategy Director at iCrossing, was the first speaker. He stressed that real-time search is an important segment of Web search, just like image or video search, and that to be successful in this segment, there must be two elements: a crawler-based algorithm and a human-driven social layer.
Trust and authority are important, as well, Garner said, and an active, agile, approach to marketing is necessary versus passive tactics.
Garner also indicated that real-time is more than Twitter. Forum posts, blog posts, and comments can factor in, as "recency" replaces "relevance" to become the new "R" word.
Annie Stickney, General Manager of Online Marketing and Development at Minyanville Media, then stepped in. She recommended using Google Trends as a way of tracking what’s popular in real time, but said not to chase every term. Remember your business and your objectives, then go after trends that are "on fire" or "volcanic" by Google’s reckoning.
Stickney noted that, by doing this (and then pushing a story to Google News via sitemaps and tweeting it), she’s generated traffic spikes and seen a return on investment.
Aaron Kahlow, Founder and Chairman of the Online Marketing Summit, then wrapped up the session by hinting that real-time search doesn’t deserve all of a marketer’s attention just yet. He said it’s impossible to catch up with real-time search, and the best thing is to have lots of content on hand and tend to SEO basics.
Kahlow argued that it’s difficult to catch people in the buying cycle using real-time search, and that real-time is still evolving.
WebProNews writer Mike Sachoff contributed to this report.