Yesterday Google announced a new social media service called Google Buzz. This new service combines a number of different social media tools into one: (a) friends, commenting and rich media (photos, videos) like Facebook, plus (b) simple, public status updates like Twitter, and (c) location based updates like FourSquare. Google Buzz also adds two more new and interesting things: (a) curated recommendations of what updates are likely to be most interesting to you, and (b) easy access to the social network through a tool 175 million people use... Gmail. If you want to know more about how Google Buzz works, read the official Google Blog article announcing it. This article is about the marketing implications of Google Buzz.
Initially, many of the limitations of Google Buzz reduce how effective a marketing tool it can be. At this point, Google Buzz is designed to be used by people more than companies. But, just like Facebook ended up creating Business Pages for companies to use instead of personal profiles, Google Buzz may in the future create some sort of business account to make a better way for businesses to interact in the community. Given these limitations, there are still some useful tips for getting started on marketing using Google Buzz.
Marketing Tips for Using Google Buzz
Get started right away. Create a company Gmail account (hopefully something close to firstname.lastname@example.org) that you will use as a company Google Buzz account. As an individual, you hopefully already have a Google account with Gmail for RSS and other things, but if not, get one for yourself too.
Find people in your industry, and follow them. Following more people gives Google Buzz a better idea of what you like and don't like, and it does encourage other people to follow you back because they do get notified that you followed them. Note: right now you can only use Google Buzz on Android phones and iPhones, so you may need to wait to get started on this. Like marketing? You can follow HubSpot in Google Buzz, or follow me too.
Multimedia, multimedia, multimedia! The golden rule in social media is to be interesting, and Google Buzz allows you to be more interesting more easily using multimedia (photo and video) content. Just like LinkedIn, Twitter or Facebook, your status updates alone are not very interesting to people. You need to create useful and interesting blog articles, photos, videos and more, and post that type of information. Google Buzz has multimedia support built-in, so use it!
Encourage everyone in your company to be active on Google Buzz. Marketing is not just for the Marketing Department anymore. You need to get lots of people in your company to blog, to be active in social media and to reach out to the community of people in your industry. Just like you encourage them to be active in other social networks, encourage them to be active in Google Buzz.
Remember that social media affects SEO too. Google has already started to put social status updates into search results, and they recently launched social search. All this means that even if you think everyone you sell to will never use social media, you still need to have a presence in social media as a company. Building a larger presence in social media and using social media to promote your content will help you rank more often in plain old search results (which are no longer so "plain" or "old"), which is important for every company.
Viral content is more important than ever. The one thing that Google Buzz does differently from other social media services is that it curates or filters the content from the people you follow, meaning that only the best or most popular content bubbles to the top. Google Buzz will also show people recommended Buzz from people they are not following, based on popularity. So, the more viral and popular your content is, the further and faster it will spread. This recommendation feature is somewhat unique to Google Buzz, and makes viral content even more important to being successful using Google Buzz.
Are you ready to get started with Google Buzz? What else do you think you should do to use it effectively for marketing?
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Originally published Feb 10, 2010 8:20:00 AM, updated March 21 2013