The Houston Chronicle (via SeattlePI) asks if Google might be stretching its brand just a little too far. The article points to the recent launch of Google Talk and the shift away from pure “search”.
Google Talk, is such a radical departure that the company had to change its near-legendary “10 Things We Know to Be True” page at www.google.com/intl/en/corporate/tenthings.html because, well, one thing wasn’t true anymore. This page used to say, “Google does not do horoscopes, financial advice or chat.”
I’ve mentioned before that Google runs the risk of brand collapse, but I don’t think they are anywhere near that, yet. Their brand still remains strong and I think a controversial product launch – not the volume of new products – could be the only thing to bring them down, at least a notch or two. They managed to side-step the controversy that came with the Gmail launch, but another new product that over-steps the bounds of either privacy or security, could see the beginning of the demise of Google’s rubber-band brand.