Google+ continues to gain market share and build consumer momentum. Since our month 3 update, two new brands from the Interbrand Top 100 list have activated pages. Overall activity is on the rise: average weekly circler engagement is up 112% and content engagement is up 65%. In this analysis we will revisit previous trends, call out new ones, and identify the strategies being adopted by top performers.
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Since our February update, 2 new brands became active on Google+: Xerox and Nike. In that same time period, 22% of the brands now have circler counts over 100,000, up from 13%. This includes Nike, giving them an impressive 2 month growth rate. This level of overall growth demonstrates that brands are prioritizing Google+ and working to capitalize on the expanding base of Google+ participants.
Since the last report, the total number of circlers increased by 138%. The majority of which are spread across 22 different brands (up from 10 at month 3). It is also interesting to note that the gap is widening between the top 22 brands and the rest. Armani, #22, has 111,000 circlers and Adidas, #23, has only 26,000 circlers. As this gap widens, it is going to become even more challenging for other brands, especially those without a presence, to catch up.
This quarter, the brands holding the top spots have changed, again. Ferrari has blown past the competition and is now in the top spot by number of circlers. They also have the second best engagement score (as a percent of circlers) amongst top 10 brands, with 7%. Their strategy of being an early brand adopters, frequently posting, and sharing a high volume of multimedia content is paying off. Brands would do well to track and emulate Ferrari’s strategies.
H&M has moved down one spot to number 2 in terms of circlers with 684,670, followed by GUCCI with 585,129. Unfortunately, both of these brands continue to lag behind Ferrari in terms of circler engagement.
Automotive continues to lead the way, based on total circler size. Of the industries with over 100,000 circlers, they are second in terms of fan engagement. If all the automotive brands adopt similar growth strategies to Ferrari, the industry will stand a good chance of being number one across the board on Google+.
Internet services comes in fourth in terms of circler size, but of the industries with over 100,000 circlers, they are number one in terms of circler engagement, with 15%. Again, the strategy of frequent posting, combined with a high volume of multimedia content, drives positive outcomes.
Brands have reason to be enthusiastic and optimistic about Google+: average weekly circler engagement is up 112% since February. With engagement on the rise, early adopters are growing their audience and the general opportunity for brands is compelling. That being said, it is still early and the scale of brand activity on Google+ still pales in comparison to Facebook and Twitter.
Content engagement is also on the rise: it increased 65% since our month 3 study. Multimedia content (photos and videos) continues to drive the vast majority of engagement. Any brand wanting to be a top player on Google+ must factor this in to their engagement strategy.
The vast majority of Google+ activity takes place during the work day. As consumer adoption expands, it will be interesting to see if this shifts towards nonwork hours.
With six months of data all pointing “up and to the right,” it is safe to say that Google+ is here to stay, and is becoming a key player in the social media space. It continues to provide a captive audience that is eager to engage with their favorite brands. There are still opportunities, as no one brand has dominated the top spot each quarter.
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