Google Has Doused It's Wildfire

Following the announcement from Google that it is winding down the Wildfire social marketing platform that it bought for $250m less than two years ago, there’s going to be some customers with some very justifiable concerns.

It may not come as a surprise to many in the industry (the lack of investment and innovation has been clear for a while), but it will send shockwaves through the marketing community.

Back in 2012, the acquisition seemed like a relatively smart (if not over-priced) move by Google. It was a shot across Facebook’s bows (as Facebook had brought Wildfire into its inner-circle) and it gave Google a new perspective on its major competitor and a way to cream-off some marketing dollars spent on Facebook social media management fees.

However, as of yesterday this dream has come to an abrupt end. Wildfire is no longer signing-up any new customers and Google’s ongoing investment in the platform will be limited. This represents a big problem for Wildfire’s customers and those currently considering the platform.

Here’s an extract from Wildfire founder Victoria Ransom’s blog, addressing the changes:

The Wildfire Social Marketing Suite, which helps businesses manage their posts and content on social networks like Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest, will continue to be supported, but further investments will be limited: we won’t be building new features or signing up new customers.

In the world of social media marketing, brands need a platform that invests to simplify and automate as many processes as possible, while still providing a unique and immersive experience.

So, if Google is no longer willing to invest in innovation, their customers are going to have to make some clear decisions about their choice of social marketing platform.

This is an edited version of a blog originally published on

Photo (cc) Donna Trussell. Some rights reserved.