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What Might Google+ Improvements Mean for Marketers?

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Google Plus LogoIt’s been about 90 days since the Google+ project began and the proud parents of the bundle of joy are still oooh-ing and awww-ing over their 3-month-old. The site has seen more than 100 improvements, the most recent of which rolled out Tuesday. Let’s examine a few of those improvements and what it can mean to marketers.

Phone Hangouts

In a Skype inspired move, Google+ now offers live hangout streaming on your mobile phone. Only supported on Android 2.3+ phones with front facing cameras, this app is now available in the Android Market for download.

Broadcast Hangouts

Speaking to a large audience just got a little bit easier. The recent launch of Hangouts On Air allows you to interact with a large group of your Google+ buds, or just view as a spectator. There’s even an option to record your session.

Think we’ll see Google+ only webinars, free training sessions, and even live concerts? Of course!

Screensharing

Additional add-ons include screensharing. Need to teach a lesson, share photos, or whatever else might be on your screen? Hangouts now have the addition of screensharing to make your experience more seamless.

Sketchpad

Hangouts now come with the additional functionality of a sketchpad. Certainly will come in handy when you’re trying to show a client, friend or family member a concept that can’t be put into words.

I can see this helping with creative content projects like Infographics or ad copy: real-time mockup in Google+. Also – quite an entertaining way to play hangman with Grandma.

Google Docs

Google+ has finally integrated Google Docs into Hangouts. Work together on a project, update an editorial calendar with a client, or explain financials in real-time. Heck, even get your taxes done in real-time and see how the numbers compute with your accountant in a hangout. Connect with a freelance writer and see how they are progressing with an article, piece of ad copy, or project you have contracted them for.

Named Hangouts

Have a need to talk to others in a particular industry or with similar interests? Look for a public hangout about that topic and connect. Or create your own. This is a great opportunity for an up and coming designer looking to reach out to fashion bloggers, other designers, or to collaborate on designs to do so no matter where they are in the world.

Use these hangouts to meet up with a support group and invite others to join in on the conversation as well. Hold an online networking event and connect with prospective customers too. The possibilities are endless.

Hangout API

Something developers will likely jump for joy over is the basic set of hangout APIs being previewed. Building real-time applications for Google+ hangouts is now within reach. Games are certainly on the horizon for Google+!

Search

Certainly something you’d expect would have already been integrated into Google+ from the search engine giant, but search is now available. Relevant content and connections will show up in addition to relevant posts. Easily sort through and find content related to what you’re looking for.

Open to All

Finally, after 3 months, Google+ is available to all. Anyone has the ability to join, and over the course of the next few days the entire globe can join Google+.

Additional Updates on the Way

We certainly haven’t seen the end of Google+ updates. Some on the horizon include:

  • +1ing comments from your iOS device 
  • Improved support
  • More personalization options

What has been your most favorite Google+ update?


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