The new facet of the social media platform, dubbed Google+ Pages, allows businesses to add their own content so that fans can stay connected “to the sports teams [they] root for, the coffee shops [they’re] loyal to and the TV shows [they] can’t stop watching,” Google Senior Vice President of Engineering Vic Gundotra said in a blog post this morning.
“So far Google+ has focused on connecting people with other people,” Gundotra said. “But we want to make sure you can build relationships with all the things you care about—from local businesses to global brands—so today we’re rolling out Google+ Pages worldwide.”
Social networking rivals, such as Facebook and Twitter, have long accepted business accounts. In fact, building a corporate presence on these sites has become an essential part of marketing your business on the Internet.
Therefore, it’s no surprise that—since its initial release in June—many businesses eager to get on Google+ established personal accounts to advertise their companies, but were forced out by Google as early as July. Terminated account holders, however, were consoled by the promises of corporate accounts in the future.
A week later, Google Product Manager Christian Oestlian posted an announcement to his Google+ page that a pilot program to test business accounts was in the works, to which thousands applied. Already, businesses such as Macy’s and Coca-Cola have begun using their Google+ Pages.
And for good reason. As if the release of Google+ Pages wasn’t enough excitement, Google also revealed two perks to having a business account.
“Today’s launch of Google+ Pages can help people transform their queries into meaningful connections, so we’re rolling out two ways to add pages to circles from Google search,” Gundota explained. “The first is by including Google+ pages in search results, and the second is a new feature called Direct Connect.”
According to Gundota, the Direct Connect feature guides users that type “+” before their query to the relevant Google+ page. For example, those searching for “+Pepsi” will be immediately redirected to the beverage’s Google+ page.
In addition to the aforementioned features, Google+ gives businesses the freedom to add friends or companies to their circles, interact with customers via Hangout video conferencing, attract followers and share information about themselves. Google+ Pages offer unique capabilities that Gundota is sure the corporate world will love.
“Not only can [fans] recommend you with a +1, or add you to a circle to listen long-term,” Gundota said. “They can actually spend time with your team, face-to-face-to-face. All you need to do is start sharing, and you’ll soon find the super fans and loyal customers that want to say hello.”