As has been made glaringly obvious by Google (did we all catch that massive blue arrow!?), the search giant has finally opened its Google+ social network to everyone – complete with a host of new features, although we are still waiting for them to introduce custom business pages. Here we take a quick look at some of the new features to Google+ that caught our eye…
So, with their big arrow directing everyone to the network, it would seem that Google+ will soon be welcoming more subscribers to add to the 10 million or so early adopters. The point of the invite-only launch a few months back was to get people using Google+ and identifying weaknesses and areas of improvement, so with the official launch Google has added some nifty new features to really try and hook the new subscribers.
The public launch has seen Google finally introduce a search bar into the social platform – allowing users to search for other users and content they have shared as well as dig through Sparks – Google’s huge collection of ‘shareable’ content from the web.
Google have also stated that from October the +1 button will now begin to be implemented into the AdWords Display Network and will appear on both image and rich media based ads – which aims to further push social interaction around ads.
How will the +1 button on display ads work?
Google have explained that the +1 button will appear at the bottom of the display ad to encourage users to share it amongst their friends. This function works in two ways. First of all, if someone
+1’s an ad, the people in their Google+ network will also be deemed relevant to serve the display ad to. Secondly, they will see that their friend has ‘recommended’ the ad and, the theory goes, they are much more likely to click through. While this may seem to effect display ads the most, the Sponsored Listings on Google’s results pages will also display any friend or follower who has +1’d an ad.
Google have stated that it will take into account any specific targeting or exclusions set up before bidding to appear on sites.
With the +1 button already dominating natural and paid search it seemed a natural step to take. However, my opinion is divided on whether this will be a useful opportunity for further social interaction or whether it uses up valuable ad space. It may also mean a rethink on the design of advertiser’s creative to keep attention on the ad and not the button – or vice versa!
Until this is implemented I will just have to wait and see what happens. Google however may be expecting some hostility to this implementation as it allows you to opt out of this in the campaigns setting section in your AdWords campaigns.
What do you think? Is including the +1 button on display a good idea?
Posted by James Murphy