The Internet is rapidly embracing the age of social business, yet search marketing is still the old reliable for Internet marketers! It's a no-brainer that without content, social media tools are useless. Data mining and search activity using Google is still a practical means of acquiring substantial and relevant data.
Recently, Google announced a bevy of new products like the Google Wallet and Google Flight Search (It works in 10 languages!). As Google continues to launch new products, the search engine giant has provided users with innovative ways to utilize search data like forecasting flu trends and rescue efforts. Aside from Google Wallet and Google Flight Search, Google recently created a tool that will enable users to correlate search trends with just about any data thrown into the mix.
In 2008, they launched Google Flu Trends to provide updated estimated of flu activity in 28 countries. Researcher including Google's own use search activity data to acquire estimates of real world activities. Thing is, either Google Trends or Google Insights weren't intended for such research approach. Both systems allow entering a search term then seeing the trend, but researchers wanted these tools to work the other way around. Thus, Google Correlate was born.
Google Correlate has yet to be launched and still being developed in the Google Labs. Correlate will enable users to upload data charted over either space or time and will seek matching patterns in search volumes. What's great about Google Correlate is that if ever you don't have your own data to upload, you can simplify search terms so Google can show matching patterns upon calculating trending patterns. Google says it's like Google Trends in reverse:
“Google Correlate is like Google Trends in reverse. With Google Trends, you type in a query and get back a data series of activity (over time or in each US state). With Google Correlate, you enter a data series (the target) and get back a list of queries whose data series follows a similar pattern.”
Google thinks search activity is very useful in determining data which may pave the way to breakthroughs in fields like economics and health. However, Google is very particular with privacy controls. Handling data is very delicate and entails privacy requisites. Google also specified that it relies on millions of random search queries issued over time and mining patterns are meaningful across significant large populations. To read more about Google Correlate, here's the link to the white paper and comic. It will provide you with examples to understand the value of Google Correlate.