We are all becoming fairly familiar with the ubiquitous Facebook Brand Page. Just to recap: Facebook Profiles are for individuals, wheras Pages are for businesses, celebrities and other ‘entities.’ In a standard Facebook profile an individual acquires ‘friends,’ but a Facebook Page acquires ‘fans.’ All those personalized ads you see popping up in your Facebook side bar? Those are often directed to a company’s customized Facebook Page, where they can promote deals, savings and general marketing campaigns. Facebook even allow for a bit of HTML customization for companies and developers that want their own unique look and feel.
Attempting to match Facebook in every social aspect possible, Google+ is also launching their own version of the brand page. So how will the two competing social branding platforms match up? Here’s our take:
Google Is Separating Profiles & Pages from the Start
Google+ has specifically told businesses to not create profiles yet in anticipation of their customized company pages. This pre-launch strategy (communication) is already a step ahead of what Facebook did; thousands of companies created FB profiles before the page format was available, resulting in a current strange and confusing mix of profiles and pages for small and large businesses. Google is getting it right by setting the standard from the starting line.
Google Has the Business Experience with Places
Google is also a step ahead of Facebook with Google+ Business Pages because they already have a wealth of experience working with local businesses through their Google Places listings. Previously known as Google local, Google Place listings have evolved over the past several years to have better authentication, search visibility and advertising options.
Google has Adwords & Analyticss
Google+ Business Pages can also take advantage of Google’s primary revenue source, Adwords & Adsense, to seamlessly integrate with the listings. Advertising from Google search to Google+ Pages will garner a higher click-through-rate and quality score than Facebook pages, and will easily sync with any oncoming advertising features Google plans to launch. In addition, Google+ Brand Pages are also likely to get the full power of Google Analytics behind them, which will enable tracking users to be easy and informative.
Google+ Brand Pages Beat Facebook Pages on the SEO Front
Google+ Pages are almost also definitely going to get ranked higher than FB pages in organic search. This will be good cause for a company’s SEO team or firm to opt for Google+ when deciding on a social branding strategy. Although businesses are likely to set up both, they usually end up putting more time and updates into one or the other. It will make sense from an SEO standpoint to invest time with the Google+ Brand Pages.
In the End, It all Depends on Usage
All in all, although Facebook already has more businesses and celebrities signed onto their pages, this is one place where Google+ will overtake them through the draw of their existing platforms. That being said, if not as many actual people end up using Google+ for social chatter, their business pages won’t be as effective.