Thursday, February 6, 2014

Google+: not a social network but a social layer that's mission critical to your marketing efforts

Google+ has over half a billion monthly active users, over 1 billion registered users, and the +1 button gets clicked 5 billion times per day. Some forecasts suggest that it is on track to overtake Facebook in 2016. The Google+ audience tends to be made up of early adopters, technophiles, people in various high-tech industries, and more enthusiastic users of technology.

Yet the majority of small- and medium-sized businesses continue to ignore it because, in their eyes, everyone is using the currently more popular Facebook. We see it in our own Google Apps customer base, and maybe your company behaves the same way.

At we've chosen to largely ignore non-Google services in our own marketing efforts and we still show on the first page of organic search results for "Google Apps Toronto". Maybe we could achieve first place if we worked hard on a Twitter and Facebook presence, but we feel that with limited time and budget, focusing on Blogger and Google+ with their integrated "social layer" is generating the highest return on investment.

97% of consumers search for local businesses online. Your local Google+ page connects you with customers in Search, Maps, and Google+ no matter what device they are using.

Note this article's headline: "not a social network but a social layer." Google+ is a social layer intimately connected to your business' search engine results. The "social layer" shows who in your circles has +1'd your search engine results. You're certainly more likely to click on the link that your contacts have recommended.

Google+ is integrated with paid advertisements on Google's Adwords advertising platform. Search for Cadbury on to see how their ads integrate with their 3.1 million followers on Google+.

Google+ is a key connector, the glue that integrates your social and business network across Google's vast offering of services.

If your business still doesn't have a Google+ Business page, set one up now and link it to your website!