At the start of the 21st century, Google revolutionized the way we used the Internet by mastering search engine technology and in turn making it the hottest tech company in the world. In the decade since, a new trend has captured Internet users: social media. Sites like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn have made connecting with one another over the Internet even easier than connecting in person.
This past month, Google re-entered the social media game with its launch of Google+ (Google Buzz still exists but has fizzled). Though the thought of yet another social media site may seem overwhelming to PR experts at first, there is plenty of potential. There are a few basic concepts to master with Google+, but doing so will put you ahead of the curve and add another effective marketing tool for you and your business.
An overview of Google+:
Circles: Facebook has groups, Twitter has lists and Google+ has circles. Circles allow you to organize your friends and contacts into groups so you can share certain information with one circle while sharing separate information with another. For example, you may have a business event planned for clients, and circles allow you to share information about that event with them without having to share it with all of your contacts.
Sparks: Sparks pulls information from your personal Internet-browsing habits and gives you suggestions for videos and articles that it thinks may be of interest to you. Using sparks is a good way to entertain yourself, but it can also be a tool to discover new ideas you may have missed, giving you more to discuss and share with those in your circles.
Hanging Out: Perhaps the most revolutionary function of Google+, Hanging Out mirrors hanging out in the real world. Being logged on is like waiting in the lobby, and anyone else from your circles that logs on is also entered into the lobby, and you have the option to participate in a video chat with each other. While video chats can be effective for holding meetings, perhaps even more important is that Hanging Out allows you to maintain contacts with those in your circles, keeping them up to speed on what is going on with you and your business.
The KCD PR take: Google+ looks to be a slick, formidable foe to Facebook and others. With its huge reach and search engine domination, we expect Google+ to be another social media marketing weapon in 2011 and beyond. Is your head spinning yet? If all this talk of social media has you wondering where to start, check out the KCD PR Social Media NOW! service. Email us for more information.