The social media world is all abuzz with recent developments from both Google and Facebook. This week on the Marketing Update , Mike and Karen dove into the following examples of marketers experimenting with new features and uses of social media tools .

Brands Experiment With Google+

As Google+ began rolling out to people last week, businesss started jumping in and creating pages for their brands. Google, however, started  shutting down the profiles of most non-human entities this week, releasing a statement explaining that later this year they will be releasing Google+ for businesses. In the meantime, they are working with some companies such as Ford and Mashable to figure out how the new tools can be applicable for businesses. 

Over the past week, Ford has been playing with the service to see how they can use it. They used the group video chat "huddle" to host a conversations between followers, and Ford executives and have also conducted a giveaway for the 300 people following them. Mashable has been using the tool to encourage discussion and debate among its 9,500 followers. Mashable has also been posting articles to the site and asking interesting questions to spark discussion in its community. 

Obama Hosts a Twitter Town Hall

Marketing strategist David Meerman Scott was surprised this week when his question was picked from more than 60,000 submissions to be anwered in Obama's first ever White House Twitter Town Hall. In this interesting and different use of social media, the White House allowed anyone to submit questions prior to the event via Twitter. They then had a sophisticated system that was used to select the final 18 questions asked to Obama during a live-streamed conversation. 

Facebook Launches Video Calling & Group Chat  

Last but not least, Facebook announced a new partnership with Skype this week, which opens up video calling via Facebook. The update also allows for group text chat and improves the chat interface for easier use. Unfortunately, this new feature isn't available for marketers to use in conjunction with their business page. However, we are hoping that Facebook will follow Google's lead and release a version for businesses to engage with soon. 

Marketing Takeaway

The social media landscape continues to change and improve. New tools are being released regularly, and as a marketer, you should be thinking about different and innovative ways to use them to engage with your followers and fans.

What do you think about the new launches from Google and Facebook? How do you feel about President Obama's unique use of Twitter?


Originally published Jul 10, 2011 9:00:00 AM, updated June 10 2021

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