Google+ profiles for business coming in October

The new social network Google+ (aka Google Plus) is the current hot topic in social media circles. Launched on 28 June for ‘field testing’ it has amassed 10 million users in 2 weeks and now has over 20 million. It took Twitter 18 months and Facebook 3 years to achieve these numbers. Google+ integrates existing social services like Gmail, Google Profiles and Google Buzz, and introduces new features called Circles, Hangouts, Sparks, and Huddles. It’s this integration that will give Google+ traction as it becomes embedded across the web. For example, there’s a permanently visible link in the top left whenever you are logged into your Google account so is present in Google Search, Gmail, Picassa etc. Integration will no doubt become deeper and changes regarding tagging have already been made in Picassa.Business profiles are likely to be launched in October and will be a huge opportunity for businesses and brands to engage with their customers. They will also be vital if companies wish to maintain their ranking within Google Search. Whether Google+ manages to tempt a significant number of people from Facebook is the big question. At the moment I’d say this is unlikely and my best guess is that Google will continue to attract ¬†users and Facebook – which is nearing saturation – will retain theirs. On Wednesday 19 October I’ll be hosting one of the UK’s first Google+ workshops where you can learn how to take advantage of the massive benefits that Google+ can offer to your business.

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