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Google has announced that it is removing profile photos and the circle count from search results that include G+ authorship.
The stated aim is to create a more consistent look across devices and create a simpler, “less-cluttered” design.
Google’s John Mueller also suggested that the clickthrough rate on the new layout is “similar” to SERPs that included author photos.
This is the part of the announcement that marketers will find most dubious, as the increased visibility and social proof that came with Google authorship was proven to increase CTR.
It’s fair to say that Google+ has failed to capture the world’s imagination in the same way as Facebook and Twitter.
Many brands diligently update their pages on a daily basis yet see very few interactions in return, so maybe it’s time to try a different tack.
Hangouts is one of the few features that's unique to Google+ and offers brands an excellent way to communicate with their followers on a personal level.
This can be done simply by hosting Q&As with employees and brand ambassadors, or through more creative Hangouts such as product demos or shoppable fashion shows.
To give some inspiration for your own events I’ve rounded up eight creative examples of Google Hangouts. Read on to find out more, or for additional information on this topic read our post on how to setup a Hangout.
As we all know, social media success should never be benchmarked purely on the number of fans and followers that you have.
But that doesn’t mean that it’s not fun to sometimes line up a load of brands and judge them based on their popularity among consumers.
We’ve done it before with fashion retailers, and this time it’s the turn of travel companies and airlines.
It turns out that Dutch airline KLM is the most consistent brand across the board, coming first, second, third and fourth on Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest respectively. It’s also the only travel company to feature in each top 10.
Department store Macy’s is the latest brand to fall under the spotlight in our series of posts looking at how major brands use social media.
Since first embracing social back in 2010 Macy’s has made the channel central to its marketing efforts and has come up with some incredibly innovative campaigns in the past few years.
And to find out more about the creative process behind social marketing, come to Econsultancy's Punch event where 'Marketing meets Creative in the age of data and insight'.
Curated by Creative Review, this event showcases the best of insight-driven creative. This event forms part of our week-long Festival of Marketing extravaganza.
In the latest instalment of our series of posts looking at how major brands use social media I’ve decided to turn the spotlight on Kroger.
The Kroger Company is the second largest retailer in the US behind Walmart, though it owns a number of subsidiary chains as well as its Kroger-branded stores.
But as we shall see, its huge profit margins don’t necessarily translate into success in social.
Last week we reported that Tiffany managed to achieve the highest engagement score on Facebook among the top retailers in the US.
On average it racks up almost 30,000 interactions per post, some 10,000 more than Victoria’s Secret in second place.
To find out whether it is equally popular across other social networks, here’s a look at how Tiffany & Co. uses Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter and Google+.
Sites that have a high number of social shares, comments, tweets and +1s tend to rank better in Google, according to a new report from Searchmetrics.
And of all the four main social networks it appears that Google+ actually has the strongest correlation with high search rankings.
The report is based on analysis of 10,000 search terms from Google UK, using the first three pages of results.
It’s important to point out that this is a correlation rather than causation, so we can’t necessarily say that social signals definitely lead to higher search rankings. But it does seem to suggest that there’s some relationship between the two.
Every now and then a report is published that suggests people are slowly coming round to the idea of using Google+, however the reality is that it is still a long, long way behind Facebook in terms of active users and average time spent on the site.
Also, I recently looked at how major retailers use Google+ and it’s clear that they don’t have a very high opinion of the network.
But there’s still a nagging sense that businesses can’t afford to totally ignore G+, as there’s a chance that in the long term it will have an increasing influence on search rankings.
Given this discussion, the use of G+ was explored in the new Econsultancy/NetBooster UK Search Engine Marketing Benchmark Report 2013. It revealed some striking differences between client-side and agency responses over the perceived impact of G+.
Every so often a report pops up suggesting that Google+ is far more popular than we actually think and that it’s on course to dominate the world of social media.
Just recently stats emerged which showed that G+ was second only to Facebook in terms of social logins, and the popularity of the network among pre-teens and youngsters suggests that its long-term prospects appear healthy.
But from personal experience I’ve found that brands aren’t particularly fussed about G+, despite the potential SEO benefits.
A survey of the top 20 UK online retailers revealed that 19 of them had G+ pages but only 13 posted content on a regular basis. And even the active pages achieved very low levels of user interaction.
In the latest of our posts looking at how major brands use the four main social networks I’ve decided to turn the spotlight on Pepsi.
The drinks brand is forced to play second fiddle to Coca-Cola’s global dominance, and is unlikely to ever match its rival’s huge social following.
However it should still make an interesting case study, particularly with its long list of brand ambassadors. This post follows on from similar blogs looking at brands such as McDonald’s, Nike, Burberry and Walmart.
So without further ado, here is a quick overview of how Pepsi use Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Google+...
In a recent study looking at the world’s most social brands, four out of the top five were from the travel sector.
German airline Lufthansa came in third place, so it seems like a good case study for our series of posts looking at how different brands use Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Google+.
Lufthansa actually publishes its social media policy online, however it doesn’t appear to have been updated in a while as it links to Twitter feeds that no longer exist.
As a reaction to its declining fortunes a few years ago Burberry decided to overhaul its marketing strategy and the company currently allocates around 60% of its ad budget to digital.
For that reason it’s often highlighted as a brand that’s ahead of the curve in terms of social marketing.
That obviously makes it the perfect subject for our regular series looking at how major brands use Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Google+.