Social key to Google's future growth
Social media will be key to Google's growth and the company expects it to experience the same rapid growth rate it has experienced with mobile, according to Ian Carrington, mobile sales director at Google UK.
Ian Carrington: mobile sales director at Google UK
As part of Google's event at Social Media Week London yesterday (16 February), Carrington talked up its Google+ service and the importance of social to the business, before an audience of more than 100 people.
He said: "Social media and mobile are the growth engines of digital. We don't see social as a destination, but something that is to be intertwined with all Google products."
Carrington explained the importance of social media in the context of mobile, claiming that 45% of social media usage was coming through smartphones.
He also stressed the importance of social recommendations to consumers, saying: "Consumers are 300% more likely to buy something when it's recommended by a friend."
He revealed that he had set up a Google+ mobile team just 45 days previously.
"We can be doing better," he said, in relation to marketing in social media, which he argued was, "fragmented and not cohesive".
Carrington added: "Messages are impersonal, speaking to everyone on our network. Comments are not conversations, recommendations lack sticking power, post gets lost."
Also at the event, introduced by Paul Coffrey, industry leader at Google UK, Beth Foster, senior Google+ strategist, wooed the crowd with an entertaining demo of Google+’s 'Hangouts' video-calling feature, in a bid to combat perceptions that the social network was only used by Google staff.
She revealed that 80% of Google+'s registered 90 million users, interact on it weekly, while 60% interact daily. She recommended H&M, Burberry and The New York Times as examples of brands which had created good Google+ brand pages.
There were also case studies from Cadbury's and Oxfam, which have both been using Google+ for brand-building. Jerry Daykin, social media community manager for Cadbury, said Google+ allowed for a "very visual" experience.
He said: "We are privileged as a brand to have fun visual content and Google+ is visual enough to bring it to life."
Chris Terry, online marketing manager, at Oxfam, agreed that Google+ was "really excellent" for displaying content, and the charity was using it more as a content platform than it did with Facebook. He said that a problem with Google+ was that it currently did not enable Oxfam to see its video views.
Foster revealed that Google was working on this issue and would be shortly launching a more advanced insights tool.
Follow Sarah Shearman on Twitter @Shearmans
This article was first published on marketingmagazine.co.uk
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