Google+ is growing in importance for small business social media strategies, some commentators have suggested, but does it warrant an investment of resources yet?
Speaking at the SES conference in San Francisco this week, Google's Matt Cutts admitted that while the search engine places increasing importance on social signals in search, it has not looked too much at +1s yet, Brafton reports.
It is worth noting Google+ continues to grow and may play a key part in small business SEO and social media strategies in future, but might there be more contenders coming out of the woodwork?
Rupert Staines, managing director for RadiumOne.com in Europe, said that while Google+ is attracting increasing numbers of users, all social media platforms are growing. "They all have massive growth in a global sense," he noted, adding that Facebook seems to have matured in developed markets, whereas Google+ is probably still growing.
"But that's not to say that's the next big thing or the next destination for brands," Mr Staines commented, saying businesses should try to have as many "shop windows" as possible. "If they can achieve that, then it's about trying to join up all those dots and aggregate all those different shop windows in order to get an engaged audience further down the funnel to the point of buying stuff."
His argument is that consumers are "everywhere" online, sharing a collective 16 billion items and consuming "tonnes of content" on various devices.
How to integrate multiple social media channels
There is a big difference between how large corporations and small businesses approach social media, mainly because of resources and also target audience. So while it may be the ideal to be represented on each social media platform, small businesses should instead focus on the channels where the bulk of their audience are active and engaged.
Even before this can happen, it is crucial for businesses to have a solid content marketing strategy that aims to achieve clear goals within the confines of limited resources.
Do you include Google+ in your small business social media and content marketing strategy? If so, have you seen measurable results from your efforts yet?