Many major Australian brands have jumped on Google’s announcement overnight of Pages for its Google+ platform, with most rushing to get a presence on Google’s social networking site.
Since Google+ came out of beta some months ago, one of the major qualms with the social platform was that Google was actively deleting and blocking any accounts that represented a brand or business. This, it said, was because accounts were to be used for personal reasons only, with a corporate solution to be made available down the track.
Overnight, Google finally launched the solution – dubbed Google+ Pages – that allow organisations to create their own profile and brand on Google+ that function in a similar manner to that of rival Facebook’s Pages tool. Members from the organisation can post images and status updates, and foster discussions using the tool.
Australian companies – already embracing social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook – have jumped onto the Google+ service (see below for list of companies thus far), and have already begun trialling the tool to test out its effectiveness. Some have made the move in a more committed manner than others who seem to be simply trialling it before making a final decision about whether to hang around.
There’s another reason why many are keen to trial the Pages service. Google revealed during the announcement overnight that Pages will have a special feature – dubbed Direct Connect – that will allow users to navigate directly to a Google+ Page by typing in the company name with a + before it. For example, typing +Pepsi in a Google query will send you straight to Pepsi’s Google+ Page.
So far, just some of the Australian IT-based organisations that’ve created an official presence on the Google+ platform include Vodafone, Telstra (though it’s not in use yet), iiNet, Internode, National Australia Bank (NAB) and of course Google Australia itself.
NAB – one of the more prominent adopters of the site, said in a statement today that it was using the site to “stay ahead of the curve.”
“We’re determined to stay ahead of the curve, so we can reach out to customers and provide support, in their channel of choice,” NAB’s Chris Smith, General Manager of Digital said.
“It’s another way can build stronger relationships, improve overall customer service – and help them manage their money better.”
Google is keen to capitalise on the attention – in a post on Google+ this afternoon, one Googler confirmed the company is already hard at work on requested features for the Pages service.
“A few of your top requests we’ve already started working on, such as multi-admin support, ownership transfer and page analytics,” Dennis Troper from the Google+ Team posted.
“You can look forward to many more features and improvements in the coming weeks and months. This is just the beginning!”