6 Examples of Google+ Advertising – How Combining Search, Social, and Behavioral Targeting Could Be a Game-Changer for Marketers

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I know what you are thinking.  Yet another Google+ post about how great the social platform is and how it can kill Facebook.  Well, hold on a minute and hear me out. Yes, I’ve been testing Google+ extensively over the past two weeks.  Yes, I think Google did a fabulous job with its social platform.  And yes, I think Facebook should be worried.  Google+ can definitely pull users and usage away from Facebook, which can cause problems for the giant social network.  But I’m not here to write about Google killing Facebook (or vice versa).  I’m going to write about the unique advertising opportunities that are possible now that Google+ has arrived.  No, the opportunities aren’t available yet (and the screenshot above isn’t real), but they could be, and soon.  Needless to say, it’s an exciting time for digital marketers.

Since I started testing Google+, I’ve been thinking a lot about how Google could monetize Google+ via its AdWords platform.   Google can do something advertising-wise that Facebook hasn’t been able to do (and probably won’t be able to do), which is close the loop between Search and Social.  That’s an incredibly important point, and one that marketers should start thinking about now.

The Impact of Google+ on SEM and Social Advertising

Last week I wrote a blog post about the potential impact of Google+ on SEM and Social Advertising, which explained how Google could uniquely track users from Search to websites and then back to Social (via Google+).  I explained how Google owns Search, but how users go off the AdWords grid when they hit Facebook.  On the flip side, I explained that while Facebook has the largest social network in the world (750+ million members), it has almost no serious Search capabilities.  That means it can’t target you while you search the web.  Neither company could effectively close the loop between what people searched for and then what they were communicating with their family and friends.

Glenn Gabe
Featured SEO Writer for SEJ Glenn Gabe is a digital marketing consultant at G-Squared Interactive and focuses heavily on SEO, SEM, Social Advertising, Social Media Marketing, and Web Analytics. Glenn has over 18 years of experience and has held leadership positions both in-house and at a global interactive agency. During his career, Glenn has helped clients across a wide range of industries including consumer packaged goods (CPG), ecommerce, startups, pharmaceutical, healthcare, military, education, non-profits, online auctions, real-estate, and publishing. You can follow Glenn on Google+ here.

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12 thoughts on “6 Examples of Google+ Advertising – How Combining Search, Social, and Behavioral Targeting Could Be a Game-Changer for Marketers

  1. It seems as though all of these uses of AdWords will be viable for Google to implement. They really just further empower Google and the advertiser, with a possible consequence of a more (and better?) personalized web browsing experience.

    1. I agree Evan, these 6 scenarios are all very possible for Google to implement. I’m excited to see new formats hit the scene.  The closed loop aspect of connecting Search and Social provide enormous opportunities for marketers. And with Google’s ability to innovate, anything is possible. Like I said in the post, it’s an exciting time to be a digital marketer.

  2. Great article and insights on AdWords closing the loop!

    It will be interesting to see how the privacy/commerce deal plays out, but I’m betting on commerce.

    Is stockpiling GOOG a good play…I’m in deep for 2 shares at the moment…

    1. Thanks for your comment.  Yes, the privacy concerns will be serious, but I’m with you.  I think history has shown that the concern will eventually subside, and marketing will keep pushing the envelope. I’m torn on the issue (excited as a marketer and scared to death as a consumer). :) 

  3. l imagine that further down the road this will become a great tool for herding segments of society by corporate/government forces – a great tool for the elitists to manipulate populations. 

    However, it does make a lot of sense to provide a better experience to consumers. 

  4. This posting brings up a lot of useful information as Google+ is going to heavily impact on-line marketing.   I’m still trying to familiarize myself with the basics so I’ll be sure to check back with you on your future postings! 

  5. I guess Google and Google + will be the future in internet world, and Adwords will support them !, Great Article!

    1. It’s underneath the Facebook Like button , actually.
      Great article, very interesting, yet, so far things are looking pretty messy in Google+ .
      It feels like in terms of UI and User Experience, Google+ was an afterthought of GoogleMail, and while being distinct, they share many similarities. Facebook was created with the sole intention of being a social network, the Facebook Mail and Search are a result of some aftermath.

      Hence, it seems to me that bridging the gap, or closing the loop, is more than just a matter of adding a few AdSense features to Google+ , it’s more of a design issue.

      It feels like someone needs to sit down there and re-think the layout and user interface of Google+ . Some features are pretty amazing, for instance, Editing your own profile feels much more intuitive than Facebook’s way. Yet, the positioning and appearance of buttons, features, the whole “methodology” behind Circles, and a few more other flaws are getting in their way.

  6. Do you think they will offer an account promotion service similar to Twitter and Facebook? Sort of seems like right now authors have to do more to promote Google+ than Google+ does to help them build their audience.