December 5, 2011
Businesses know that when it comes to BI and decision making, data is king. Google has had years of experience building and honing its data gathering, analysis and reporting tools within the business framework, and it leverages this competitive advantage by integrating its leadership in search and API development to offer an easy and reliable way for businesses to measure the success of their online initiatives. This is a notable strength of the new social network’s business page features, because the Analytics component has been conceptualized and built from the very beginning. In stark contrast, Analytics and business intelligence seem to have been an afterthought for competing networks.
It always makes sense for businesses to build on and extend their core competencies. Google is the dominant search engine in the online world so it’s no surprise that it brings its search expertise to the social networking table. Google+ Search focuses on allowing users to search through Google+ content, returning information from profiles, member posts and shared content from the Sparks engine.
You can narrow your search down to a specific area and -yes-it’s a great feature, but I’d be willing to bet that Google is tracking your search activities to subsequently provide data and insights that can help you (and others) analyze social business behavior.
The new feature launched by Google+ was hardly noticed at first, but those who have used Ripples are astounded by the amount of data the feature can provide to users. The main interface is an interactive info-graphic that summarizes the ripple effect caused by content you produce, visually presenting who among your contacts has been sharing your content with their own circles.
This is an easy way for you to find out and track the “influencers” within your Circles, allowing you to focus on these people for future marketing campaigns and activities.
How serious is Google about its social analytics? Its recent addition of real time data to Google Analytics and its acquisition last month of social analytics startup SocialGrapple seem to indicate that they are very serious indeed. Users can check out the new social engagement report on Google Analytics and monitor the behavior of users on their Google+ business pages.
Google’s strategy for social analytics also seems to indicate that the company is trying to eliminate the distinctions that currently set “search” users, traditionally identified as Google’s user base, apart from “social” users that are claimed by social networks such as Facebook. Google is instead aiming for a single massive-user population that reaches sites from a variety of sources using a variety of discovery tools.
Google seems to be making a strong push to attract business owners and if they continue to offer tools like these, you might see a shift in population among the top social media networks one day. This is a prize audience that Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter are all vying for, and I’m pretty sure those guys are watching very, very closely. I can see them responding to many of the tools that Google creates in the near future.
Perhaps the most powerful feature within the Google+ Analytics framework is the newly available API, which currently allows users to readily access public and Hangouts data. Developers can create tools and objects that work with these data sources to provide dynamic interaction opportunities with end-users. It’s exciting to imagine and anticipate what these new data-driven apps and tools will look like, but these will certainly be game changers for online businesses and social networking.
Article by Edwin S Huertas. At Isis Toolbox we have created our social media marketing tools with a lot of help from Google. We plan to incorporate any and all API tools that Google+ offers into our free tools to help marketers make the most of their social media marketing efforts.
If you know anything about online marketing, it is that SEO, video and social media channels are your best options for delivering high quality traffic to your Website.
That’s why we’ve put together a suite of tools that will allow you to not only improve your traffic, but also help you make the most out of the time you spend branding your business and communicating with leads and clients via social media platforms.
Check out Isis Toolbox at http://www.isistoolbox.com