Several critics believed Google would never get social right following the debacle that was Google Buzz. While the company’s dominance spans across many areas, it was starting to look like this wouldn’t be one of them. Ironically, some of the very same pundits who doubted the folks in Mountain View, California have been forced to sing a different tune now that Google+ has arrived on the scene.
Google+ is arguably the hottest topic on the web, effectively snatching the spotlight from social networking darlings Facebook and Twitter in the process. That alone is pretty impressive considering that it hasn’t even officially hit the market. Google+ is currently in beta phase where it is being tested on an invitation-only basis, but its huge potential as a marketing tool has already been revealed
Google+ and the Email Marketer
Although no guarantees can be made at the moment since the platform is essentially a closed project for now, Google+ could very well have an impact that reaches all the way to the email marketing community. How so? Just like every other social network we latch onto as marketing tools. With an API for the platform on the way, it wouldn’t be surprising to see a version of the +1 button that we can use to encourage subscribers to share our email campaigns across the network, in addition to other features that enable us to blend in with the Google+ experience.
Google’s new social toy could soon bring a lot to the table for email marketers, but until then, here is what you can do to take advantage:
Start Creating a Presence – According to Google itself, Google+ is not quite open for business just yet. The company says it is working on an all-business version that will be launched some time later this year. That doesn’t mean you can’t get in on the action now. Start creating your presence today and you will be better prepared when the marketer-friendly version of the platform rolls out.
Use with Caution – Google is strongly encouraging brands to hold off on using the existing beta platform as a business tool. In fact, the company appears to be willing to go as far as shutting down the accounts of those who do not heed its warning. Needless to say, you need to be very careful how you proceed with using the platform. Luckily, Circles, Hangouts and even Sparks are among the features businesses can get good use out of without drawing negative attention.
Aim to Build Relationships – Doing social networking right lies in your ability to build relationships, and Google+ will be no different in this regard. While it may be too early to entice users with offers and promotions, now is the perfect time to engage the early adopters and start building relationships. It would be nice to already have a community built around your brand when the business version finally is released.
The targeted nature of Google+ makes it an ideal match for an email marketing strategy. Google’s platform is up against some stiff competition, but if it is able to at least remain competitive, this will certainly be one to add to your arsenal of marketing tools.