By now you’ve probably heard the ripples through the social sphere about Google rolling out their brand pages on Google+. They’ve signed up with some interesting partners initially, including The Muppets, New York Times and the Dallas Cowboys, but I’m curious to know what the music industry has in store for the site.
A few options I see right off the bat are the ability to have fans in different circles, this could be great for sending out exclusive messages to your street team, exclusive ticket giveaways etc. As a fan I want to be in the exclusive circle because that’s where all the real goodies are. You’re really not able to pick and choose this type of engagement on Facebook, which really creates the first difference I see in Brands on G+ over FB.
With Facebook you’re basically limited to three tiers: Admins, Non-fans, Fans. I look forward to brands and smart marketers using Google+ to open up different layers of interaction based on these different circles.
Next up, and probably most obvious is the hangout feature. Ustream has been killing this market for a while, with a number of top artists spending at least a studio session or two answering questions and generally causing hijinks live for all their fans to see. Hangouts will become a way for artists to connect with their fans in real-time without leaving the social experience (which is good for Google).
But the last factor that is still quite unsure is how these Google+ pages will affect search results. With the new google algorithm, it’s almost guaranteed that G+ will be affecting this in a big way, but that is too new to tell yet.
Some other great features of the roll-out include a feature that makes brand pages unable to add an individual to a circle without them first adding the page to a circle. Note that adding a page to your circles is done by clicking “add to circles” and not just the +1 (which apparently is linked to any page your same +1 is registered on, according to a TechCrunch article).
So what do others in the music industry think about this? Here are a few comments below:
Chris “Broadway” Romero – Co-founder, Thisis50.com (Regular Google+ User)
Artists and Bands on Google+ will only be as effective as the strategies applied in connecting the fans to the experiences available that make Google+ unique. I believe it’s going to take influences like what Diddy did in the early days of twitter, making it COOL to literally Hang Out. There’s a great divide, I don’t see Twitter making any type of short link code or any quick way to jump from Twitter to a Google+ hangout so in a sense, you’re asking people to make 2 leaps from their usual path to live streaming content. Difficult, but not impossible. I always believe in launching sites, new services, or key features with a SPLASH, such as a hangout that’s a huge live stream concert event. THE EVENT is still the key in entertainment, and Google tends to roll things out gradually. At some level they have to make EVENTS happen for Google+ to benefit Artists and Muscians and vice versa.
DJ Z – Co-owner, DJbooth.net (Casual Google+ user)
The possibilities for artists/bands on Google+ is limitless – so long as they/their label understand the value of segmenting fans based on their level of fandom. I think a “reward system” based on support will allow individuals to strive towards being in the ultimate top-tier circle, which includes exclusive goodies (free MP3s, early ticket buy options, etc…) Everyone wants to feel like they are special and the Google+ circle options allow for that to happen.
Do you have a Google+ page for your artist or band? Leave your URL below! As always comments are appreciated.