Google+ is establishing itself as the mainstream social network for top brands with a 9,400 percent increase in followers since 2011, according to a report by BrightEdge.
The ‘Social Share' report tracked social media adoption trends for the BrandZ top 100 global brands including Apple, Google, IBM, BMW, Red Bull, and Samsung. The report also provided insights into how YouTube is performing as a social network.
"Google+ and YouTube have established themselves firmly in the mainstream of social networking. A majority of the top 100 brands- three quarters- have active profiles. As more brands engage users, we expect to see those who are unconvinced to shake off reservations and establish a strong Google+ presence," said Jim Yu, BrightEdge founder and CEO.
Among the findings, the top 100 brands on Google+ now boast 20.9 million fans – up from just 222,000 in 2011. Of these, the top 10 account for four out of five followers.
Additionally, the auto industry accounts for 40 percent of the top 10 spots for followers on Google, with BMW leading the way with over 2.2 million followers. Another 20 percent of brands also have their Google+ pages show up in SERP results.
"This is an extremely significant increase for the automobile industry in particular, where figures have grown substantially from absolutely nothing in 2011. Mercedes-Benz now has 2 million followers and this number is rising every day.... Marketers are increasingly promoting Google+ via their own home page and these efforts are paying off in terms of SERP results," Yu notes.
The report also found that 87 percent of top brands now have a YouTube channel and Google, Red Bull and Samsung are leading the way with "breakaway" numbers of subscribers.
"YouTube has proven its marketing potential and it should not be overlooked. Both that and Google+ have proven to be social media powerhouses and any brands not utilizing both these paths need to take note," Yu said.