When it entered the market in February 2005, YouTube fought its way to the top in its game via clever decision-making on making their product more accessible and more frequented than any other.
In October 2006, a mere 18 months later, the original founders sold to Google for US$1.65billion (AU$1.9billion).
Since 2006, YouTube has played a key role in shaping world history via the web. It has been used to report on wars media previously neglected and other taboo issues like rorted elections around the world.
When Barack Obama made history as the first African-American president of the United States, YouTube helped him win votes and capture the imagination of voters.
As recently as last month, YouTube served the Haiti Earthquake Appeal song - remake of WE ARE THE WORLD - sung by some of the world's biggest stars including Barbra Streisand, Celine Dion, Snoop Dog, Lil Wayne, LL Cool J, Wyclef Jean, Vince Vaughn, Jennifer Hudson, and more...
YouTube helped raise millions for this and other causes.
Today, 5 years later, this all-powerful new media source is worth far more than the US$1.65billion (AU$1.9million) that Google paid for it.
The fact that it only works in Gmail forces Google Buzz users to create a Gmail account. This is obviously free, but clearly a tactic to increase the popularity of Gmail, which has consistently forced away market share from Microsoft's Hotmail, Live and MSN email offerings.
The fact that Google has been able to integrate Twitter and Flickr into Google Buzz will make the product immediately appealing to large number of users.
Surely an aim of Google will be to expand this offering beyond the current social media websites, and in the future include the hugely popular Facebook as an integrated possibility. With Microsoft's share in Facebook, that will likely be a mammoth challenge for the newly-crowned kings of Silicon Valley.
My assumption is proven by recent statistics published by Net Application, which states that Google Chrome's browser market share cracked the 5% barrier last month.
Although it is an awesome product and users of it tend to remain users of it, Google can put Chrome's success down to very clever marketing, which was all about leveraging their immense web appeal to promote their new browser.
Google search is the most popular search engine in the world by far (over 90% of Australia's Online Search market share).
Google also owns the immensely popular Gmail free email accounts service, while its Google Apps brand encapsulates products used by Enterprise, Schools, Government and everyone else with a mouse, keyboard and screen.
Google also owns YouTube, and if you haven't heard of that video sharing web giant, you should be ashamed of yourself!
On all the above products, for all its billions of users to see, Google placed simple text advertising encouraging users to try seeing what they are seeing BETTER than ever before with Google Chrome.
I have no doubt it is this strategy that has led to their jump in market share, and I expect this trend will only continue.
While in New York on a business mixed with pleasure (Happy Anniversary wifey) trip earlier this month, I learned at a web business conference that Pepsi Co. has decided against advertising during the much-hyped Superbowl for the first time in memory.
Instead, Pepsi Co. will devote the entire sums spent on that usually-massive television campaign to a Social Media advertising campaign promoting their beverages to live users of the web.
It is hardly surprising considering the staggering findings of this Nielsen report.
I fully expect Australian companies to take note of the numbers above and do similarly in coming months.