Who do you work with? Who’s your enemy? The correct answers, in order, are:

  1. Everyone
  2. No-One

In another sign of competition yielding to CoOpetition, Zoho, the not-quite-Google of on-line document editing and storage, has integrated their service with Google Docs. Is this business change, business as usual, or an attempt to “steal eyeballs”?.

The answer is “Yes”.

If you click on the above link to Zoho’s announcement, you’ll leave here, and go to a page on Zoho’s website. That’s the way the Internet works. But what’s the cost of that to The Answer Guy? Have we lost you? What if you never come back?

To protect against that a little bit, we make the link open a fresh window in your browser so instead of leaving here when you click you’re left with a trail back. And we do that not only to “hold on to you”, but because we know how frustrating it is to lose you place in the middle. We’re cooperating with Zoho, and you.

Because we’re not in the same business as the folks at Zoho, (see, there it is again!) CoOpetition is barely in play. But what if you’re Zoho and want to make it easy for your users to see their Google Docs documents right inside Zoho? What are you doing then?

An even better question: what will Google think Zoho is doing?

Google holds such a strong position that I’ll bet they’ll think Zoho linking the two companies’ competitive services is fine. But what if one of your competitors wants to do this to you? Maybe they’ll negotiate a deal, and maybe they’ll just do it.

Don’t wait for that. Be the company that makes the links. Initiate business change instead of waiting for it to come to you.

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