Debate

Google doesn’t know what its brand means.

Jessica Thornsby

Is Chrome, Android and Google Docs leaving Google confused?

Google may be building up a nice portfolio of products and
services – Chrome OS, Android, Search, and Docs – but, according to
John Battelle, all is not well in camp
Google.

Google has expanded on its search engine roots and now,
according to Battelle, “Google doesn’t know what its brand means.”
He proposes that Google is now a software company, and a widespread
“Pepsi” to several of the original, “Coke” brands of the software
world (Android vs. iPhone; Google Docs vs. Microsoft Office; Google
Chrome vs. Internet Explorer.)

It is true that Google have never been a forceful brand
advertiser, but Battelle argues that this was never an issue
before, as Google’s search engine service was the brand builder.
Now, Google’s hesitance to advertise, signals that Google isn’t
quite sure of what it’s advertising. “You can’t do brand
advertising if you can’t say what the brand means,” Battelle
explains.

Google certainly isn’t ‘just’ a search engine anymore but, when
you factor in Android, Docs, and Google’s own Chrome browser, it is
possible to see why some people are struggling to define the Google
brand.

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