I am sure you all agree Google+ launch had a great marketing campaign: the invites only access to the new social network by the search giant was like lining up (queuing if you are in the UK) outside of the most famous disco full of VIPs.
Now, after Google announced the forthcoming pages for business, while some companies went crazy looking for Google+ experts, some other companies started their Google+ pages, ignoring that Google told them not to- and ignoring the fact that they were going to loose their page, along with its fans. I am sure you heard Google is closing down company pages and asking to put them under a person’s name.
There is only one little certain fact over here: while Google’s marketing was great during the launch of the beta version of G+, their marketing for business is way less clever. And they seem like they donìt really have a clear strategy and timing about their own product.
Shutting down a company page, changing the rules, letting someone stay in and leaving others out: this is not a great way to interact with customers that have likely used a lot of their marketing dollars over google adwords and that are willing to spend even more.
On the other side, also companies’ marketing is not too clever either: it seems companies are too busy trying to get in, and they don’t get that until Google gives them a green light (I am sure they are adding analytics to pages and adwords of course and great new tools), their company pages will just represent a waste of time and money. And they risk loosing fans too! And of course some “Google plus experts” are already out – as pointed out in this post.
If your company is in the process of deciding what to do and where to put your social marketing dollars in the next few months, Google suggests not to invest on them, basically. At least not yet, for the next few months.
In fact after this incredible mess – I can’t quite believe that a company that wants to position itself as the new Facebook makes all these mistakes – Christian Oestlien, Google’s group product manager, posted this on his profile (Google probably thinks such an important news should be shared this way) this announcement earlier today:
“A few weeks ago we mentioned we would be doing a test of business profiles and asked people interested to apply. Believe it or not we actually had tens of thousands of businesses, charities, and other organizations apply to take part from all over the world. Many of you have reached out to me personally through Google+, e-mail, chat, and even other Googlers. Thank you. Your response has been humbling.
With so many qualified candidates expressing intense interest in business profiles, we’ve been thinking hard about how to handle this process. Your enthusiasm obligates us to do more to get businesses involved in Google+ in the right way, and we have to do it faster. As a result, we have refocused a few priorities and we expect to have an initial version of businesses profiles up and running for EVERYONE in the next few months. There may be a tiny handful business profiles that will remain in the meantime solely for the purpose of testing how businesses interact with consumers.
In the meantime, we ask you not to create a business profile using regular profiles on Google+. The platform at the moment is not built for the business use case, and we want to help you build long-term relationships with your customers. Doing it right is worth the wait. We will continue to disable business profiles using regular profiles. We recommend you find a real person who is willing to represent your organization on Google+ using a real profile as him-or-herself. “
- Google’s marketing needs improvement
- Google’s customer service needs improvement
- Google needs to effectively communicate to their audience, possibly not through nice marketing artices published on select blogs/websites.
- Companies with a Google+ page will not be able to understand the effectiveness of their marketing efforts on Google+ till a final version of pages for business comes out, and their campaigns may fail if they insist with having a presence on G+
- Facebook may become stronger and take advantage of all these mistakes Google is doing.
Do you have a Google+ company page yet? What’s your take?