For about 5 years now there has been a pretty stark dichotomy between search and social. Search has often been thought of as the essential ingredient in online marketing by anyone who knows what it is. Social, on the other hand, was thought of as the red-headed stepchild. But if you made your bread and butter through social then you likely had it the other way around.
The fact is, search and social go together. We really can’t separate them any more. Online marketers should incorporate both tactics into their overall marketing plan online. Leave nothing out.
I believe that on the supply side these two streams will merge. Google is searching for the right mix of search and social. Twitter is racing to figure out how to best incorporate search elements in its offerings. Facebook is struggling with the merge as well. YouTube seems to have it down pat, not that there’s not room for improvement.
I think it’s possible – nay, likely – that in five years we’ll see a completely different Web. Search and social will be fully merged. Search will have a social element and social media will all be connected through search – maybe Google, maybe something else. But I do believe there will be a comprehensive merging of the two.
What do you think? Is this possible? Am I off my rocker? What do you see happening to search and social?