The closing keynote on Wednesday at ad:tech New York was presented by Christian Oestlien the Head of Social Advertising Products at Google. The opening of Oestlien’s presentation featured an example of Google+’s new Hangout feature shot live at a Black Eyed Peas Concert. Fans were given an opportunity to interact with the music sensations in real time. Black Eyed Pea’s frontman will.i.am is noted as saying “This isn’t behind the music, this will become the music.”
Since launching in June, Google+ has already acquired over 40 million active users. Users have also uploaded over 3.5 billion photos in those short months. According to Oestlien the goal of Google+ for enable marketers to interact with their fan base in a way that they never have before. When developing Google+ the team set out to see how they could influence and impact as well as improve that way that marketers are utilizing Online Marketing today.
Google identified 5 key problems that marketers are commonly faced with including:
- Fragmented Marketing
- Recommendations Lack Staying Power
- Comments, Not Conversations
- Impersonal Messages
- Limited Insights
Determining Problems Is Only the First Step
Current Problem: Fragmented Marketing
More often than not what marketers are doing socially is vastly different than how their marketing plans are executed. Google is aiming to change the way that you market both online and offline. Oestlien also notes that Google is not trying to bring something completely new to the market. They are simply trying to transform the way that your information is shared.
Google Solution: Google+ Page, Direct Connect
Google has never had a specific place for users to connect and communicate with brands directly. Now with Google+ Pages you can easily interact with your favorite brands. Direct Connect is also a new feature that has recently been introduced. With Direct Connect you simply type the + symbol and then the name of the brand to be sent immediately to their page without having to sift through search results.
Current Problem: Recommendations Lack Staying Power
We’ve all experienced a moment where we have tried to think of a recommendation that was given to us by a friend or colleague and no matter how hard we’ve tried, we just can’t remember the exact details.
Google Solution: Google +1 Button
Google plus pages allows brands to connect +1’s around their brand and anchor them to your brand at Google. This enables Google to take recommendations that the brand has received and disperse them through the internet, enabling marketers to extend their brand and get in front of users in everything that they are doing online. For end users Google has discovered that if a brand, product, location, or event has been recommended by someone they personally know (in their circle) they are much more likely to trust that recommendation.
Current Problem: Comments, Not Conversations
It has been difficult for many marketers to find a way of engaging with prospective customers. Strategies are often centered around pushing information out onto social networks vs. engaging prospects on social networks.
Google Solution: Google+ Hangouts
Google+ Hangouts which was mentioned at the very beginning of the keynote has many practical B2B applications for business owners. Imagine the ability to interact live with your customers, record live testimonials, facilitate customer service questions, gather a group of industry thought leaders, the list goes on and on.
Current Problem: Impersonal Messages
In daily life you have the ability to change or tweak your message depending on who you are talking to. Unfortunately, that has not been the case with social networks. Marketers have been able to cast a wide net and attempt to personalize the message slightly to included all members of the audience.
Google Solution: Google+ Circles
Circles is by far one of my favorite Google+ features. This solution consists of intuitive groups which will allow marketers to directly target individual segments of their prospect or customer base. It also solves a question many marketers ask regarding managing a professional and personal social networking platform.
Current Problem: Limited Insights
It is extremely important to understand and gather insight into how people are interacting with your content. Why is this important? According to Oestlien “over 77% of content around brands is being shared by the users not the brand.”
Google Solution: Google+ Ripples
Ripples creates a timeline of how posts are shared and interacted with. Not only can you see who shared what information with who but you can also replay this information via a timeline to see what led to the success even if it is weeks or months down the road by the time you have discovered it.
I for one, found the keynote to be very helpful and practical for business applications. If you haven’t already signed up your company for a Google+ Page, check it out here. The team at TopRank Online Marketing will be sure to update you as frequently as we can on the changes that are sure to follow from Google+ and of course you can visit our Google+ Page for Online Marketing Blog.
If you are attending ad:tech New York, be sure to catch TopRank Online Marketing CEO Lee Odden and the Search Marketing Masters sessions with Intel, Volkswagen, REI, Salesforce, Bazaarvoice and Marin Software this morning at Room 13, Hall 1E, Level 1, in the Javits Center.