Web 2.0: Alive and Well

Like it or hate it, Web 2.0 is a term that is widely used. Marketers and industry folks use it all the time to describe web-based communities and social networks. And if Facebook’s recent valuation is any indication, things appear to be going quite well for this type of web development. Something more exciting than that, however, is Google’s recent announcement of OpenSocial. I’m sure someone out there is just barely containing themselves from labeling this recent development as the coming of Web 3.0. Regardless, it does have some pretty profound implications for businesses of all types.

What is OpenSocial?

According to Google, “OpenSocial provides a common set of APIs for social applications across multiple websites. With standard JavaScript and HTML, developers can create apps that access a social network’s friends and update feeds.”

What does this mean to you?

When you develop a web application you will have the opportunity to get much more out of your investment. You will be able to place this application on multiple sites to reach many more customers.

As an example, think of a resort destination that provides users with an application that allows them to rate their favorite places, share pictures and video, and even meet up. OpenSocial would allow this application to be used across multiple social networks like MySpace, Facebook, and LinkedIn, as well as other communities and even blogs.

I can already sense that some marketers out there are getting concerned about their web analytics. My advice – don’t worry about it. You will introduce your brand to more people than ever before. In fact, you’d probably see your web traffic go up. Go to where the audience is, don’t wait for them to come to you.

Of course, it is still early in the game for OpenSocial, and it depends on if everyone decides to play nicely together in the sandbox. Either way, it is something we will be watching and you should start thinking about when it comes to your online marketing strategy.

Google has certainly been thinking about it for a while.

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