Despite being in their infancy, Google + and Pinterest are both growing at significant rates as consumers continue to start expanding what social networks they use, with 42 percent of consumers have more than one social media account.
Google Plus convinced 50 million users to sign up in just 88 days after launching in 2011. The search engine giant announced this summer that they have reached a significant milestone – 500 million G+ users. 625,000 users sign up every day, which helped it become the second largest social network.
Pinterest was first launched in March 2010, but users could only join the image based social network if they were invited up until August 2012. Since May 2011 Pinterest has seen a 2,702.2% increase in unique visitors and the social network reached 70 million users this year.
Slowly marketers are starting to see the significance of Google Plus and Pinterest, with 48% of Fortune Global 100 companies use G+ and 25% having a Pinterest account. Approximately 40% of marketing teams have decided to promote their business through Google’s social network and 500,000 use the image based website.
Both social networks can easily be integrated into social media marketing strategies.
Unlike its rivals, G+ gives marketers an opportunity to filter who sees the content that they post, through the use of circles, in other words different groups e.g. customers, colleagues, potential customers. This enables marketing teams to target a particular audience, making the posts more relevant to followers.
Google Plus also compliments search engine optimisation efforts, with a feature called Google Authorship. This means the search engine understands that your employee is the one writing the content and takes this into account when deciding on your business’s search ranking. Another cool thing about the social network, is that it has been discovered that +1s (shares) on Google Plus have more of an impact on your SEO than if someone shares your content on Facebook.
Facebook and Twitter may give companies the chance to speak directly to their customers but Google Plus presents marketers with even more interactivity – video chats. The hangout feature allows businesses to talk to up to 25 other people, bringing a personal touch to your social media efforts. The chats can even be streamed live on YouTube or posted on their afterwards.
Google + has more of a focus on people connecting with people who have the same interests e.g. cooking, as well as discovering more about that topic. Keep this in mind when you are using the social network to promote your content marketing in Google communities (groups), which are similar to groups on LinkedIn. This will help you increase users brand awareness of your business as they are already interested in the sector you work in.
Pinterest differs from Facebook, Twitter and Google Plus, as there is much less of a focus on talking to over people. Instead the focus is on discovery – of new images, products, articles and videos.
Due to being all about pictures and videos, Pinterest creates more of an opportunity to showcase products and services than its competitors. Research has revealed that items that are pinned can suggest the user is likely to go on to buy the product. Pins with the price clearly labelled in the description see 36 percent more likes and 58 percent of users follow a company to help them find inspiration of what to buy in the future. By not having brief descriptions and linking to the relevant pages, you are helping to drive traffic back to your company’s website.
Recent updates like the introduction of article pins, whereby you can add a pin it! Button into your blog posts means that Pinterest is becoming a great way to promote your content marketing efforts. The majority of posts on the social network are re-pins, giving your posts a higher chance of gaining more exposure if you share your articles to your followers.
Just like with other social networks, users won’t appreciate too many sales based posts, instead make your company useful to your followers. For example a how-to-guide video will both increase brand awareness for your business and help you draw in a potential customer. It’s also a good idea not to just self-promote – why not create a board that is about more general themes in your industry or that highlights other work or products that your customers might like? This will help make your company have a more personalised image on Pinterest.
The cool thing about Pinterest is the content you post will look great and there are plenty of apps that let businesses promote pins elsewhere. This could be embedding posts into your website to let customers know you use the social network or even in your e-newsletter by using Wisestamp.
It is important to use a range of social networks in social media strategies in order to target different consumers and in order for the different benefits your company can receive. London Creative can help manage your social campaigns and advise you more about best practice of using Pinterest and Google Plus to promote your business.