Google is beta testing a new kind of ad that will allow brands to publish Google+ updates across its extensive ad network, essentially becoming the first social media platform to allow users to purchase ads that won?t be displayed natively. Google+ still does not allow native advertising within the network.
The new advertising option, called +Post ads, are created within Google+ and will appear as embedded posts on external websites within the Google Display Network. The ads are full of features that encourage engagement with the audience and will direct users to the advertisers? Google+ profile.
Businesses seeking to advertise with +Post ads will have access to all the tools within Google Display Network including demographics and affinity groups. Google Display Network includes about 2 million websites, allowing for specific ad targeting. Companies only pay when people engage with the content in the ad.
The ability to specifically target your message gives brands the flexibility to create messaging that will appeal to a certain audience. Google provides the ability to target your audiences based on demographics, affinity segments and contextual targeting. The ads are also viewable across all types of devices.
While the new +Post ads are being beta-tested, the concept has many in the industry guessing whether the ads will be effective for brands, or if their impact will be minimal. It is a new idea with a lot of unknowns, but it could be indicative of a larger shift in advertising.
Nearly all the major social media networks, with the exception of Google+, offer some sort of native advertising or sponsored posts within the network that allows brands to target their messages to others on the network. Google is the first to take that one step further and offer social advertising completely outside of Google+.
The ads may be appealing to businesses with strong social content that want to reach a larger audience outside the social network.The ads are essential Google+ posts, and viewers can interact?asking questions, posting comments or sharing it with friends.
The ads will undoubtedly benefit the Google+ network, increasing visibility and directing consumers back to Google+. And as Google tries to gain a footing in the ultra-competitive social media world, +Posts will only help point people in their direction.
While there remains a lot to be seen about the effectiveness of +Post ads, it should be easy to see that businesses that have a strong, responsible social presence will benefit the most from the ads. Your content will need to be appealing, and if viewers interact with your ad, you?ll need to be there to respond.
If you use +Posts, set clear objectives you hope to achieve. You may want to your Google+ network, increase brand awareness or promote a new product or service. The +Post ads will act and perform similar to any other ad placed within the Google Display Network, but also provides the flexibility to promote content that encourages engagement.
Google?s new +Post ads will not be for everyone, and if Google+ does not rank as a social media priority for your company you may be better off spending your advertising dollars elsewhere. Establish your priorities and determine where to focus your efforts for the best return.
The move by Google is one that should provoke thought about the future of advertising online. Most small businesses may want to wait and see how well the ads perform, and how the change might impact advertising elsewhere online and on other social media platforms.