Google, OpenSocial, and Marketing

Google, OpenSocial, and Marketing

Google is announcing an open API for social networks. This has been widely reported on all the major tech news sites. It’s a strong, smart play by Google, as it lets them turn any participating site, effectively, into a Google App, and gives them access to index data that hasn’t been available in some cases.

OpenSocial will allow data interchange among networks for three types of data:
– Profile data
– Friend data
– Activity data

Initial participating networks include Orkut, Salesforce, LinkedIn, Ning, Hi5, Plaxo, Friendster, Viadeo and Oracle.

OpenSocial means something different to marketers, though. OpenSocial will immediately increase the value of each of the participating networks to marketers. Here’s an example.

In context, I have very different friends and friend data on LinkedIn and Plaxo. My friends in turn have different friends and contexts on the various services. OpenSocial will let me aggregate all of my friend data across networks to a data store, and I can then get a better idea of what’s on my networks.

More importantly – perhaps most important of all – I’ll be able to get common reference data across networks. This means, simply, that I will be able to cross reference data from one network to another. If a contact has a mailing address on LinkedIn, but is missing a ZIP code, and they have the ZIP on Plaxo, I will be able to aggregate the disparate pieces of data to develop a complete profile. Marketer’s dream? Heck yes.

What’s your marketing strategy for OpenSocial? Mine is to continue building and growing my presence on individual networks, targeting them for their demographics, and as the first OpenSocial developer applications come out, I’ll aggregate all the data together.

If you’re doing a targeted campaign, such as social network marketing, OpenSocial will make this process easier and faster. You’ll be able to amplify your marketing power across many networks, rather than just one, much in the same way TubeMogul lets you post your videos to 9 different video sharing sites at once.

Are you ready for OpenSocial?

  • http://www.marketingovercoffee.com John Wall

    I keep saying that Google stock can’t push past its peak and stuff like this keeps happening…

  • http://www.marketingovercoffee.com John Wall

    I keep saying that Google stock can’t push past its peak and stuff like this keeps happening…

  • http://beth.typepad.com Beth Kanter

    Chris:

    I am working mostly with nonprofit orgs with limited resources. Many are not using social networks, but some are beginning to adopt them. The big question is which ones, how many, and how to make the work efficient. What advice would you offer to an organization just starting to use social networking sites as part of their marketing strategy and had limited resources? How to make the decision to jump in strategically and smartly?

  • http://beth.typepad.com Beth Kanter

    Chris:

    I am working mostly with nonprofit orgs with limited resources. Many are not using social networks, but some are beginning to adopt them. The big question is which ones, how many, and how to make the work efficient. What advice would you offer to an organization just starting to use social networking sites as part of their marketing strategy and had limited resources? How to make the decision to jump in strategically and smartly?

  • http://www.ChristopherSPenn.com Christopher S. Penn

    Beth: I saw Changing The Present today and thought it was brilliant. Facebook established a tradition of $1 gifts and CTP created an app where instead of padding Facebook’s bottom line, the $1 gets put to charitable uses. Brilliant.

  • http://www.ChristopherSPenn.com Christopher S. Penn

    Beth: I saw Changing The Present today and thought it was brilliant. Facebook established a tradition of $1 gifts and CTP created an app where instead of padding Facebook’s bottom line, the $1 gets put to charitable uses. Brilliant.

  • http://beth.typepad.com Beth Kanter

    Have you looked at Causes?

  • http://beth.typepad.com Beth Kanter

    Have you looked at Causes?