Google+ is a social networking site launched in 2011 with 540 million monthly active users. Like other social media platforms, Google+ allows users to post photos, videos, and other types of content to their respective profiles. It is different than other popular social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter, though, in that it was designed to add a social element to all the features so many already use from Google, like Gmail, Calendars, YouTube, Android, etc.

After some were dissatisfied with the platform as originally released, Google released “New Google+” in November of 2005. This version of Google+—the current version—features an adaptable and mobile-first interface and can be used both in a web browser and in app form. Still, Google+ is not as popular as other social channels. However, it does present many opportunities for marketers.

Google+ posts, for example, have dedicated URLs that appear on search engine results page (SERP) listings, helping a brand’s SEO efforts. Influencers who maintain profiles on Google+ have the added benefit of their thumbnail photograph showing up next to their posts directly on the SERP, too, not just on the post itself. Google+ users can join Communities, places where the online conversations and posts are targeted to specific topics or interests—presenting another solid opportunity for brands to hone in on relevant keywords and engage with consumers who have already shown interest.

In addition, there are coordinated targeting features for both YouTube and Google+ that allow users to show certain content only to particular ‘circles.’ Besides standard analytics for measurement, Google+ allows brands to track post activity in real-time using a feature called

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