So maybe you’ve heard a little bit about Google+ floating around on the Internet and you’re wondering if you should be paying attention. After all, you’ve finally got dragged, kicking and screaming, into creating a Facebook page and you barely know what to do with that let alone join another social network. You’ve already been sold on the importance of social media to your business. Is Google+ something you should be looking into as a small business owner?
What you should do right now about Google+?
Currently, Google+ does not allow for business pages – only personal ones. However, it’s a good idea to get on it and play around with it to get used to the slick user interface. Right now it’s by invitation only. If you email me, I’ll be more than happy to send you an invite. Rumor has it that Google plans to open it up to everyone by the end of the month.
Google does plan to release a way for businesses to get in on the action. Frankly, if they tied that in with Google Places, it would totally rock! (Sorry, just the geek in me getting excited). That would make it even more important for all the brick-and-mortar businesses to claim their place/profile on Google. If you haven’t done that yet, get on it!
“But what about later,” You may be asking, “Does Google+ really have a chance against Facebook?”
The short answer is yes and here’s one huge reason why. Google+ has a public view. You don’t have to have an account already. No one has to sign in to view your page. It’s best described as a Facebook/Twitter mashup. You can hold private conversations (on the personal accounts anyway), but a public page is going to do wonders for how your business shows up in search results. Social media and search marketing are already growing more and more intertwined. Who better to mash the two together than the search giant themselves?
Now granted this is all still new and Google is quickly adjusting, modifying and adding things to G+ as we speak. And it is yet to be seen how the adoption rate is for the average consumer. But my guess is (and the rumbling on the Internet is) that Google has finally produced a social network with a fighting chance (compared to their previous attempts) and that people should take notice. I’ll be keeping an eye on the ins and outs of Google+ and will be sure to keep you posted on what it means to small businesses.