Should Your Small Business Invest On Google+?

Google’s most eagerly awaited social networking product finally came out not even a month ago and it has already reached 18M+ users, and has been ALL the rage on tech blogs everywhere. Clearly, the least thing you want is to have to learn yet another set of jargons (people are just now getting used to “Facebook Me” and “Like Us”).

But should your business be on Google+?

The obvious answer is …. MAYBE. WTF? Yeah, I know it’s a ridiculous answer, but bear with me. There are 3 main things to consider before jumping on board:

Google Told Us Not To

Yeah – Googler Christian Oestlien, who’s directly related to the “revenue” part of Google+, posted on his profile asking business to wait because G+ is not yet ready for businesses. According to Christian, asking Ford for his (or her) gender was a bit awkward.  Despite the obvious awkwardness, however, Ford Motor Company has been added to more than 6000 circles and they’re clearly investing some time on the new platform.

Google+ Is Not An RSS Feed (Hear me, Mashable?)

Publications such as Mashable have ignored Google’s advice and created a business page of their own as well. If you check them out, you’ll see a long list of their blog posts on the page. Exactly like their Facebook Fan Page or their Twitter.

The entire proposition of Google+ is to “share just the right thing to just the right people” – that’s why they spent a lot of  money and brain power to create CIRCLES. Clearly, most people continue to publish posts in “public” mode, which beats the purpose, but for YOUR BRAND, there’s no “me too”. If you’re going to follow Chris Brogan’s advice and “be the first to market“, what exactly are you going to share and with who?

Which leads us to the 3rd point:

How Can Google+ ADD To Your Social Media Presence?

If you’re thinking of adding your brand to G+, consider its amazing new set of tools (hangouts, circles, sparks), and start brainstorming how they can help you ADD value to your campaigns, to your daily management, to your staff interaction.

Our guerilleros have just begun using Hangout for quick video conferences. It’s much faster than the buggy Skype tool for Facebook, and it also beats the Skype desktop client in a few home tests we ran. We are also using sparks to find great content, in almost real time, for several of our clients. There are MANY applications of Google’s newest set of tools that can positively impact your social guerilla. Dont just be another one. (Did you get the joke with +1/another one?)

I Conclude With Google’s Promise

Yeah, you have a profile on LinkedIn because you have to. The same applies to a few other social plaftforms. But Google has been very clear – aggressively clear – that they’re fully committed to G+. What this means is that whatever they have designed for businesses is likely to integrate every little product in their mix.

Google Places? Yeah, absolutely. Gmail, of course. Adwords? You betcha!

Here’s what I suggest – jump on Google+ IMMEDIATELY, but under your own name. Get used to circles, hangouts, explore the possibilities. Establish a few connections, follow a few power users in your industry.  When it comes time to have a real business profile on G+, you’ll have a giant leg up. That’s the real advantage here.

P.s – if you need an invitation, just leave a comment with your preferred email . You dont have to put the email in the message field – duh! The email field hides your email from anybody but me 😉

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