Google+ Brand Page Concept

Naturally, with the advent of any new social platform, brands want to be included.

Almost immediately after the Google+ launch, we started to see a few, mainly tech-related blogs, creating brand profiles there.

However, the Google+ profiles aren’t really set up for brands. The profiles ask a lot of questions more applicable to humans–for example–if a profile is male or female. This created some initial confusion, but Google VP of Products, Bradley Horowitz, quickly responded with:

”Let me be clear – and I’m sorry if this wasn’t obvious – we are not currently supporting brands, organizations, and non-human entities in the Google+ field trial.

Supporting these non-human entities is an obviously great feature – we have no allergy to it at all! It’s just not part of the system we are currently testing.”

So, while we wait to see how Google plans to incorpate brands into Google+, I decided to come up with a little concept of how that might look. Once I started to hack this together, it became clear just how powerful brand pages could be on Google+.

Click the image below to enlarge; check out my notes below, and please let me know your thoughts in the comments section.

  • Inclusion of Google +1 Button: Brands have official websites, and those websites can benefit from receiving +1’s right on the profile page.
  • Verification: Determining if a profile is genuine is important. Brand pages will need some way to verify a page and then reflect that status.
  • Google Maps: As many brands have physical locations, it makes sense to offer some type of Google Maps module.
  • Displaying Circles: Unlike personal pages, brands may want to show off their circles. Here’s a great chance to segment your audience and showcase top fans or employees.
  • Canvas Page: For the middle column, (labeled ”About Us” in this example), brands would prefer a less structured module. The ability to stylize and include custom marketing creative would be great.
  • Google Offers: Once Google Offers (Google’s answer to Groupon) rolls out more widely, I can see it being included here in the sub navigation. Brands may want to call out active offers even more prominently.
  • Sparks: I like them and hope Google continues to further develop them. In the right column, brands could feature Sparks related to their brand or products.

Related: The Google Plus 50 

Add me to a circle: http://gplus.to/percival



Comments Closed

83 Comments about “Google+ Brand Page Concept”

  1. Matthew Arevalo Says:

    Awesome. Clean, confident, I’d love to have the brands I rep here.

  2. Kevin Says:

    Awesome Jason,
    I guess you can send this draft to Google+, but also to Starbucks and any company which is doubting about Google+ potential :-)= !
    This page is much clearer than anything you have on Facebook.
    Even if Tabs are a big + on FB, the fact you can display them directly on Google+ with not just the name but a real preview of it is just great.

    Google+ profile makes me think of a very well organized corporate website.
    Guess what, i’ll create mine :-)

  3. Ken Johnson Says:

    Very nice work!

    Important to note that outbound links would not only become useful, but purposeful in this context. Within Facebook anything that navigates a user outside of the platform is a big no no. Within Google… well I guess they aren’t really even “outbound” links at all. The brand page becomes a touching off point much like conducting a search, although perhaps more controlled.

    Real-time feeds would make this insanely good for building relationships between consumers and brands. Links to recent articles, what people are saying around the web (especially someone you know!), etc.

  4. Kim Sherrell Says:

    Your Google+ Brand Page concept looks great, Sean! I love the idea of allowing brands to choose which circles to display. A list of employees and on-duty brand managers, as shown in your example, would allow for lightening-fast CRM.

    As for the page layout and visual design, I hope we see a healthy amount of control given to the brand owners. I’ve never understood why a company would willingly conform to the cookie-cutter look and feel sameness of its host platform.

    When it comes to branding, people need the ability to differentiate themselves. Let’s hope Google gives brands an opportunity to create stunning pages. Let’s hope for nothing less than complete customization!

  5. NORIKO NAKATA Says:

    迅速ですが、GOOgle+の翻訳機能はおかしいです。

  6. Andrew Fielding Says:

    I don’t see brands having circles as a huge opportunity. Do you really think they want to point out their employees personal Google+ pages? I’d think maybe they’d want to have Circles for other corporations but find it hard to believe they’d have it for their best customers (Hey, competitors, here’s the people you need to steal from us!), or employees (Hey recruiter, wanna poach?). Think the rest is all spot on though.

  7. Scott Paley Says:

    Very nice!

    I think Google owes you a few bucks now… ;)

  8. Jan Simmonds Says:

    For the same reason brands are, in my opinion, diluted on Facebook; I think they face the same problem here. Brands are aspirational and whether they are people or products, they by necessity have to stand out from the crowd. The long tail technology model of social is ‘that crowd’ and the brands I will continue to look ‘up’ to instead of ‘across at’, won’t ever feature successfully within either place, rather drown in them!

  9. kerry Says:

    My only complaint would be that it looks too much like Facebook. With a whole new platform can we not be a bit more experimental and interesting?

    That being said, I think it’s likely what we’ll see and still very good.

  10. smnbss Says:

    Do you think there’s a business for a 3rd party company to build something like that with a deep integration with google+, facebook and twitter? it would need a nice domain and a good UI, but I think there could be a business case for it.

  11. Jan Simmonds Says:

    smnbss – working on it! ;-)

  12. Tom Says:

    Remember that +1 is all around the web. If a brand wet to have have page, the +1 button would apply to the website for that brand, so that search would be more relevant.

  13. James Voss Says:

    Great design. Clean, clear look!

  14. Nida Ehsan Says:

    Very Nice ! I think Google should look forward to it. They can opt for the same look and feel for brand pages in order to bring innovation. Much simpler, cleaner and convenient. The most interesting feature would be integration of Google Maps within the Page.

  15. Ulrich Says:

    It seems like Facebook, no ? ;)

  16. AliCeleste Says:

    I’m good with all of this, but I need a Facebook has burned me so badly that I need a few things before i get excited:

    1. I will be able to listen to those in my circle, not just blast them with updates and hope they comment.

    2. There will be no “community pages” or “location pages” or any other crap that may pop up unexpectedly.

    3. We can SEARCH in Google+ and it will make sense.

    Because honestly, Facebook has been less effective for me than Myspace was. Not because the audience isn’t there – oh no it’s certainly there. But because I can’t sit back and listen to them. I can’t see what else they’re excited about, form profiles, learn about them, and share those findings with others in my company who are far too removed from our audience.

    Google+ has an opportunity to beat the pants off of Facebook here – SPECIFICALLY for Brands – because they can provide something clean, uniform, and that works as a two-way listening platform.

    In other words, I really have my hopes up. Good mock up!

  17. Iain Says:

    I think Google has got to be clear about how Google+ fits in with all its other product offerings when/if it does start to support non-human entites. The page you’ve laid out (very nice) is very much like Google Places within its Maps product. I’m sure this is the internal dilemma Google has as to how Google+ will roll this out for businesses and how this will merge with Places.

    It’s hard enough trying to keep all the updates up-to-date in other social networks, never mind updating multiple “things” throughout the same network.

    (I haven’t looked into this, so could be wrong: Google+ is really an extension of Profiles. I would expect Plus to be individuals Profiles, which would then allow Docs, Photos as well as the entire product offering from Google to fit within Plus – Plus acting as both an umbrella for the products, but also the social platform for which individuals would manage. Places would therefore sit nicely within that, and little more required.) I’m babbling. Who knows!

  18. Caz Says:

    Hi Sean,

    Great blog post. Would it be OK to use a screen shot of your ‘hack up’ for a blog post? Of course, you will be credited.

    Thanks
    Caz

  19. Aurélien Says:

    Very good try !
    BTW, i think like you Google’ll push his products. So instead of/ complementary to Google Maps, a Google Places integration is obvious to capitalize to addresses collected. With “Offers” tab, an integration with Google Products, will be also a good strategy.
    => Brands and Business already using google services will immediately gain in being on google+

  20. NORIKO NAKATA Says:

    あの。。。紀子です。無理に漢字に変換するのは、誤解を招くと思いますけど。。。

  21. paris Says:

    The ultimate mashup of Google Offers+Places+(biz)Plus is coming for sure…

  22. luis Says:

    Good post!
    I´m sure Google have something like that in the works and the PM will be promote or fire depending in how much their page looks like yours!!

  23. Data Entry Says:

    This is new innovation of google. will see how google convert to Google+.
    but for sure this is new things and lets see how it works. Thanks

  24. Taylor Davidson Says:

    Love it, especially the Offers in the subnav.

    How would you propose integrating Google Places? How should a brand (especially a retailer like Startbucks) integrated multiple Google Places listings for individual stores?

    The real question is the analogue to the FB Platform for rich interactions. No doubt it’s on the development plan.

  25. Peter L Masters MCIM Says:

    This is great and inspirational!

    I think issues like being able to change a business name is important, businesses change their names all the time but you can’t alter Facebook if you’ve more than 100 LIKES! Silly.

    Plus, it should be business and only business, everyone has (and needs) as private life!

    To be able to personalize the page to suit your corporation without spending too much is essential. Provide value and people will love it, that’s social media, right?

    Great stuff, thanks very much! Regards, Peter

  26. Joseph Says:

    There’s another way to make use of public circles, for brands – allow people to add themselves to certain “open” circles. This could act as an alternative to newsletters.

    For instance, Ford could have circles for each of their models… I would add myself to the Ford Fusion circle, if I owned one. Ford would then be able to send out Fusion-specific updates only to that circle.

    Depending on the business, the open circles could be brand-specific or location-specific, or any other category that suits them.

  27. John McElhenney Says:

    Well, it’s pretty self-explanatory. There’s not much else to figure out. What’s FORD’s page look like right now?

  28. Franco Canales Says:

    Buen trabajo, se nota que hay un conocimiento de esta nueva red, bien parecido a lo que se pudo haber hecho en facebook, pero con mejoras.

  29. John Koetsier Says:

    Huh, looks pretty much like a Facebook page, doesn’t it?

    But I think a real differentiator between FB and G+ would be NOT letting brands in at all:
    http://sparkplug9.com/google-dont-add-brand-accounts-if-you-want-to-stay-social/

  30. Paul Says:

    Looks good but it’s almost identical to Facebook now and I’m not entirely sure about the circles for brands.

    I’m not sold on Google+ just yet. I have an account and I’m playing with it but it’s almost like the imalgimation of all my social networks (Twitter, Facebook and Foursquare) in one. I don’t like that. They’re different audiences and although Google+ allows for that it makes it more confusing by me having to organize them through tweeters, family, check-in folks etc.

    Back to the point. great job on this but I’d rather see Facebook re-vamp brand pages and offer all these features than move to Google+

  31. Joseph Says:

    @John McElhenney :
    This is Ford’s business profile right now… pretty much the same as any other profile you see on G+. They’re one of the few brands testing business profiles for G+

    https://plus.google.com/114277687548103339609/about

  32. Christiaan Says:

    Excellent idea. I coined the term Google+ Clubs that explains how managed circles (with members or employees) work.

    https://plus.google.com/111790865042724819404/posts/A2vbCpeMG13

  33. merry Says:

    Google+ username, try this http://igpl.us/

  34. DIgnitasSelect Says:

    I was very pleased to find this.I wanted to thanks for your time for this glorious read!! I definitely enjoying every little bit it.

  35. Chris Says:

    Looks like a nice mockup. The idea of the gmap showing nearby locations of the brand is quite nice but would not be relevant to all situations, in which case I would think that G+ brand pages should have a widget interface that allows the brand to customise the content they push to their fans/followers via their profile. This way they can deliver content-centric widgets that are obviously directly relevant to their business. I don’t know if that’s in the pipelines already, haven’t been following the development but I think it’d be pretty cool at least.

  36. Web Design Bradford Says:

    Very interesting after the purchase of motorola by google and the related patents that go with it. I would not be surprised if the google maps is integrated with google plus one for a localism on serches.

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  38. Modelos Says:

    There are certainly a lot of details like that to take into consideration. That is a great point to bring up. I offer the thoughts above as general inspiration but clearly there are questions like the one you bring up where the most i

  39. Nik Says:

    Hi Sean,

    Well put together. I think many people are waiting on Google to release this. I think you did a great job here and I hope you are not very far off the truth. I also like to note a widget interface.

    Many great idea’s here. Lets wait what they really come up with!
    Nik

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  41. Tal Says:

    Thought G+ would be growing at a much faster rate, but I guess it’ll take some time. Still haven’t cared to use it on a daily like fb yet.

  42. petsafe Says:

    Very Nice ! I think Google should look forward to it. They can opt for the same look and feel for brand pages in order to bring innovation.

  43. Jimmy Says:

    Looks great!
    Any idea when G+ for businesses will be available? I know in July they said 3 months… just wondering if anyone has an update on that.
    Thanks!

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Published: July 4th, 2011 | 40,311 views