Google Plus

Does anyone really need a Google+ account? A lot of people have been asking this question lately – especially at tech PR firms like March, since we do a lot of work with clients on their social media strategies. We know that any social network is an investment and you want to make sure that the investment will pay off.

LinkedIn and Facebook can help with lead generation. Twitter’s a great tool for networking and digesting industry news. Pinterest is … well, it’s something, but it’s still developing as a useful tool for B2B tech companies. So what does Google+ have to offer that isn’t already offered by a more popular social network? That’s simple: the power of search.

The Era of Social Search

Last week, we discussed how Bing and Google+ were making serious moves toward an era of social search. Bing has teamed up with Facebook to help with Graph Search and now it’s possible to sync up Facebook data with your Bing searches. Still, the fact remains that about 66 percent of all search traffic is going to Google. Bing has about 16 percent.

Google is incorporating Google+ into search results, so every PR firm needs to be talking about this with clients as part of their strategies. It’s imperative that every thought leader has a Google+ account or their content will get relegated to the notoriously dusty second page of search results.

PR, Clients and Google+

PR agencies write a lot of thought leadership pieces on behalf of clients, especially on company blogs. Since Google is making Google+ a bigger part of search results, the bloggers with Google+ accounts are going rise to the top faster.

That’s why Google+ is going to become PR’s best friend – Or at least a “frenemy.”

1. Content marketing and PR are already becoming the same thing.

2. A big part of content marketing is search engine optimization (SEO).

3. PR firms help clients with SEO.

4. In the era of social search, Google+ will be crucial for content that drives SEO.

Since Google is forcing everyone’s hands by weighing Google+ so heavily in search results, the social network may start seeing a lot more engagement from content creators and thought leaders looking to make sure that their content stays at the top of search results.

For the public relations firms, that means working with clients to develop a coherent Google+ strategy that can help promote bylines, blog content and other thought leadership work. Then, they can take it one step further and engage with communities and industry peers on Google+ to help enhance SEO. SEO and social are converging and, love it or hate it, Google+ is going to be at the core of this convergence.

What do you think? Is Google+ a best friend, a best frenemy or both?

Please note that this is an old article and the information presented here may not be relevant anymore.