Google+ Niche for Businesses – Thoughts and Current Insights

Here are 5 reasons why Google+ makes sense for businesses to join and embrace. The big 5 are: it’s easy, G+ is tied into Search, it’s conversational chat with random people, has unique demographics, and offers some interesting applications.

1. G+ is easier: Sharing and privacy controls are easy and clear – much easier in Google+ than in Facebook, for example.

The Circles feature allows you to control who gets to see what message – it easily helps you organize your contacts so you can target posts to specific people or groups. It makes it simple to make both personal posts and share professionally.

Google makes it easy for you to share what you’re finding with others. The Google+ bar is fully available on both the Places pages and Google Maps – you can share any Places page, and any Google Maps page at any time with one or two clicks.

2. G+ is tied into search: HUGE.

Google+ also can do what Facebook can’t: provide significant traffic from search. Facebook’s tools for local business are pretty sparse, where Google’s aren’t. Google+ ’s integration of their Plus network into its web-dominating search engine is certainly reason enough to build out a strong brand presence.

Search tip: Add a “+” before your query and jump directly to a business’s Google+ page. For example: type “+Macy’s” into a Google search box, for instance, and Google will take you straight to Macy’s Google Plus page.

Let’s look at how Google+ can impact real people doing real searches: Check out Chris Lang’s post where he talks about Google+ and shows how he’s used it for a very personal search. He starts by pointing out what Google has to work with:

Google Maps
Google Places – which include comments and ratings
Google Offers (think Groupon)
Your Google+ Profile
All of these Google apps can be integrated and tailored into personalized searches. Think of them all as great ways to discover local businesses and have them feed into Google+ sharing. Chris shares how he’s used Google+ and how accessing friends Google+ profiles can benefit you – great to see what friends like and don’t like.

3. G+ is conversational: People are finding that there’s more discussion on Google Plus than on blog posts.

4. G+’s current population: the current users of Google+ are predominantly net-savvy technophiles with fewer distractions on this platform than those “chatting, sharing and pretend-farming with friends on Facebook” according to Sam Fiorella . “Cutting through the clutter” is certainly a goal of marketers which offers opportunity for brands. The start up,limited size of the Google+ can be a visibility advantage.

Google+ seems to be focusing on an infrastructure that lives within the current Web habits of the public instead of creating a destination community. As Sam says, “It’s almost as if Google+ will be “snuck” into our web-experiences”.

5. G+ for training and learning: Google+ is a great way to pull information to you. This can be used in formal teaching or for training situations, because G+ can be used to facilitate discussion and sharing (think Hangouts for one). Because of Google+’s easy-to-understand sharing controls, trainers could develop platforms that are built on Google+ to support dynamic learning and skill acquisition.

Google+ can work both Ways

Users can go from the Google+ Page post directly to a local business and get to know more – like who the owner behind the business is that you find via your friends’ recommendations. It’s a win-win, great for Google+ users, great for Google+ Business pages.

The Crystal Ball

Predictions are impossible, but I will leave you with two questions…

1. Will Google+ become the premier B2B social networking platform?

2. Can and will Google+ become THE channel, a one-stop shopping experience for social networking? After all, users would only have to learn and monitor one platform for both their professional and personal networking.