Facing off with Google on general web search is a futile exercise, so its competitors are searching for untapped niches to regain some of the audience they’ve lost to the search behemoth.
Following on from Yahoo!’s release of Shine, a portal aimed at the female market, IAC (interactive Corp), Ask.com’s parent company, have launched RushmoreDrive.com targeting African based groups in the US.
IAC, announced the launch of a “black” focused web community in Feb 2008, named Black Web Enterprises (BWE), which has been almost 12 months in development. The BWE press release stated:
“Rather than compete with existing sites already geared toward the Black community, our goal with the initiative is to expand this market in order to bring the absolute best and most relevant web experience to Black people everywhere…
…BWE will house a number of yet-to-be-announced online destinations catering to the distinct needs and interests of the estimated 50 million Black people living in the U.S., from African Americans to Blacks from Latin America and the Caribbean.”
RushmoreDrive.com is the first development from the Black Web Enterprises project. Named after the BWE address in Charlotte N.C, RushmoreDrive.com runs on the Teoma search engine with a tailored database of content deemed more relevant to the “black” community.
The About Us section of the site sums up its purpose and goals best:
“RushmoreDrive is a first-of-its-kind search engine for the Black community. We deliver a blend of mainstream search results plus a layer of more relevant search results influenced by the Black community. RushmoreDrive is where the Black community goes to find the best search results.”
As searchers around the world seek a more relevant search experience, RushmoreDrive.com could be the answer for “black” Americans. The challenge for IAC and the executive team at RushmoreDrive.com will be achieving credibility in the “black” community.
From an marketers point of view, niche search services and communities such as RushmoreDrive.com and Yahoo!’s Shine, provide a strong targeting opportunity for the right products and services.