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Brian Cuda: Making your small business an Internet +1

It's all geek to us

Posted: June 25, 2011 1:55 a.m.
Updated: June 25, 2011 1:55 a.m.
 

Many organizations would be satisfied with having their name used as a verb and a 65-percent market share in one sector of their industry.

Not Google.
 
It appears their goal is to be the leader in every aspect related to the Internet, and beyond. 

However, in the area of social networking, it has a long way to go before it catches Facebook.

Google has released a number of social networking products that have, for the most part, met with mediocre results. That hasn’t stopped the search giant from trying new social strategies.

In April 2011, Google introduced their newest social offering, the +1 button. On the official +1 website (www.google.com/+1/button), Google describes the button as “shorthand for ‘this is pretty cool’ or ‘you should check this out’.”

A better way to describe it is to say that the +1 button is Google’s version of Facebook’s “Like” Button.

Similar to a Facebook “like,” the +1 button allows you to tag a website, or search result, so others can benefit from your recommendation. Google also provides a user the option of keeping their +1 vote private or public; either way, you need to have a Google account to use the feature.

In addition, website owners need to add code to their sites if they would like to include the button on their websites.

Clearly, there are benefits to having your site highlighted in a search result based on a recommendation. Creating easy ways for people to share your brand with their network can only help increase positive brand awareness.

On the other hand, Google’s new +1 offering could lead to confusion for people that don’t understand what the +1 button does.

In addition, adding another icon to a web page makes me wonder if the average site visitor has the time, or interest, to try to figure out what these buttons are, no matter whether they “like,” “share,” “digg,” “tweet,” “follow,” “buzz,” “bookmark,” or “+1” something.

I guess that we will eventually find out.

In the meantime, it is probably a good idea to ask your favorite computer geek to add the +1 code to your site and ask your clients and friends to be sure to +1 your site. While it may not really be that exciting of a site enhancement, it will likely benefit your overall web marketing strategy.

Brian Cuda is co-founder of Conceptinet, a website design, development, hosting, social media and marketing firm located in Santa Clarita and can be reached at 661-338-0830  www.conceptinet.com. Cuda’s column reflects his own views and not necessarily those of The Signal. Readers can submit questions to: brian@geek2us.com.

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