It has been five months since Google+ launched, and while the initial buzz around this new social network being a potential Facebook killer hasn’t proved correct, the service has ‘slowly’ built a user base of over 50 million.
This week Google+ added Pages, brand-specific accounts for businesses. Companies like Pepsi, GAP and McDonald’s have been quick to set up profiles for themselves, but is there a place for museums and galleries on this new social network, and for those struggling to keep up with their institutions profiles on Facebook and Twitter is it really worthwhile adding Google+ to the mix?
Here are a few reasons to consider it:
Google don’t verify that Google+ business page are being set up by someone authorised to do so by the organisation in question, so it is important for museums and galleries grab their pages before someone else does.
2. Google+ doesn’t have to be hard work
You don’t have to create unique content for this new social network. If your already producing posts for Facebook and Twitter, just replicate some of these for Google+ (Disclaimer: though in time you may find this audience does need different content).
When Google+ launched earlier in the year it included a ‘video conferencing’ tool called ‘hangouts’. This is also available for business users, including museums and I feel that this has huge potential.
Imagine a curator hosting ‘hangout’ sessions and engaging in discussions with followers, I think that is an exciting prospect.
4. Less competition
While Facebook and Twitter have more users then Google+, they also have the disadvantage of a lot more competition for the attention of users.
Google+ lets you reach audiences through less cluttered newsfeeds.
While Facebook uses a walled garden approach where content can only be accessed by members, Google+ is an open platform so someone doesn’t need to subscribe to your newsfeed to read them.
Search is Google’s big advantage over Facebook and you can guarantee that they will leverage this to make it worth businesses, and museums being on Google+.
It is early days and Google+ may thrive or struggle to survive, but I feel that it is worth museums and galleries reserving their Google+ profile and dipping a toes in the water.
Has your museum set up a profile on Google+, what response have you had so far?