Social search. I bet you’ve heard the term already, but it’s not happening without a search engine to back it up. One may argue – why bother with using Google to find social media content if it can be found on my Facebook account?  Social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, and Foursquare are mere sites on the open web, when you search for something you use a search engine. You go to Google, type a term or a query so you can find what you’re looking for. Reality checked. We all use a search engine and not a social platform to find content.

During the first two weeks of Google+, it’s apparent that the search giant’s social network was a content basin. The content curation activity inside the Google+ network has been sporadic and instant. I’ve read tons of articles about customer collaboration, majority of the authors always highlight how social media paved the way for company-customer collaboration through user engagement. But before that happens, I think customer-customer collaboration takes place first!

User-generated content or UGC is the fuel of social media, businesses won’t establish a firm social media presence without people talking about any of their products.  If there’s no content there’s no conversation. If there’s no conversation then there’s no emotion. Content marketing? It’s a goner without any feedback from customers. And people won’t bother talking about brands if they don’t have a grasp on information. Information that they can find using a search engine.

It’s been a month since Google+ was launched, Michael Dell thinks the Hangouts function could enhance customer service, while Sparks is a practical way to filter the content you want to read. But how do you really utilize a social networking account that’s connected to the world’s largest search engine? Google+ has been around for a month, but some people are still clueless about it. Is it Google’s answer to Facebook? Does Google simply want to have a social network of their own? Nobody knows at this point, but with Google+’s functions like Hangouts and Sparks, it seems that Google’s preparing consumers and businesses for the next stage in social networking evolution.