In November 2011, Google announced the launch of ‘Google+ brand pages’, a digital marketing channel, which is similar in function to Facebook’s business pages. This left many marketers wondering if they should begin using Google’s new product to enhance their digital marketing strategies on Facebook and Twitter, or if they should leave it alone because of the extra time/resources required.
Here are some things digital marketing professionals should think about, before deciding if Google+ will be right for them or not:
• Smaller base of users: While the user base on Google+ is much smaller than that of Facebook’s (approximately 40 million vs. 800 million), this does not mean that digital marketing specialists should ignore it. Social networks that have fewer users usually have less distraction in the form of apps, allowing companies to target prospective customers better. While Facebook is filled with service apps like Spotify, Washington Post and Farmville-type games, Google+ offers content that is more professional and specific to the industry. This will enable certain brands to build stronger and more personal connections with their audiences.
• Unique functionality: The Hangout’s feature of Google+ allows brands to host live audio/video chats, between themselves and their audiences. This is a unique functionality, which is not available on other social networking websites. With Hangouts, brands can keep prospective customers engaged through discussions, and receive continuous feedback, which will help them improve their offerings. For instance, Michael Dell of Dell recently announced that the company may soon start using Hangouts for customer support and sales enquiries.
• Integration with other Google products in the future: Google has always worked to integrate its old products, with its new offerings. The most recent of such integration is adding the Google +1 facility to Image Search. According to leading digital marketing professionals, Google is soon expected to integrate services such as Google Places, Google Maps, YouTube and Web Search with their Google+ product. This would be very beneficial to a brand that has a digital marketing profile on Google+, as they will be able to significantly improve their visibility, and ensure their digital marketing content is shared.
In the end, the decision of including Google+ brand pages within your digital marketing strategy or not, depends on the kind of audience you are targeting and how creatively you can use the apps available to you.
Qudos Digital is a leading digital marketing agency and can be contacted on 020 8891 2077 or firstname.lastname@example.org.