GOOGLE+ BRANDED BUSINESS PAGES:
WHY YOU SHOULD SIGN-UP
Another year, another social media channel. The recent announcement of Google+ brand pages has left many businesses contemplating. Organisations know they need to connect with their target audiences and spread brand awareness, but is it worth the time and resources to engage with this new channel?
The answer is 'yes'. Although Google+ brand pages are new to the social media family, there are unique elements that can be leveraged for your business. Here are some reasons why you should take a look.
Own your Brand
It's important to claim your business page before someone does. Like Facebook in its early days, the rule of first in best dressed applies to Google +. It can take valuable time and resources to get your brand back if someone else creates the page first.
Fewer Users, Less Competition
Although Google+ only has 40 million users in comparison to Facebook's 800 million, it doesn't mean it's not a viable platform. Fewer users will enable you to directly target consumers as there are fewer competitors in the space. Google+ seems to be driven by professional, informative and industry specific content, which means brands can create a direct relationship with their audiences.
Another link from Google equals another link to your website. The most important thing to note is that Google integrates its social media platform into its web-dominating search engine. The Direct Connect functionality enables users to add a '+' before a query which will take them directly to a Google+ business page. At the very least, if users don't use a + symbol but search for your brand, you will get another link to your business that is high in search results.
Be Part of the Google Family
Google is continually unifying its products and offerings, resulting in integrated platforms. This strategy paves the way for this social media channel to incorporate other services such as Google Maps, Places, YouTube and Web Search. Image Search and Google+'s have recently been integrated, allowing companies to rank for images that are recommended by others.
An Industry First
Be the first in your industry to create a page. Arriving early will enable you to build a community and master the platform before your competitors. Increase your brands visibility in the social space and obtain an audience that is likely to share your content.
What's Important to Google is Important to you.
Lastly, if social media is important to Google, it should be relevant to your business. To drive traffic to your website using the leading search engine giant, you need to work with them and gain recognition through a number of platforms.