Few people in the social media game would ever say that they genuinely enjoy flipping from one Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Google+ account to the next and pasting in the same message over and over again. At the same time, it’s also difficult to manage any number of social media conversations by the same method. So many social media channels. So little time.
Therefore, the development of the social media dashboard application has been a welcome event met by much champagne and dancing in the cubicles. Of course, when one dashboard app pops up with a clever new functionality, there are two or three that immediately follow – leaving many to wonder what social media management app is best for all these networks. The one that offers you the most control, wouldn’t you think?
HootSuite, a social media management system geared toward businesses that wish to coordinate social media campaigns across a number of social networks, is favored by many business web marketing teams for its integrations with Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Foursquare, WordPress, Mixi, and MySpace (believe it or not). The product service depth includes web, iPhone, iPad, Android, and Blackberry. The HootSuite platform also features a number of social content apps for YouTube, Flickr, Tumblr and more. So, it’s no surprise that HootSuite has become a real favorite with social media users. According to company stats, HootSuite has built a user base of 5 million since the December 2008 launch. According to the July 18th announcement, the HootSuite user base is about to grow a bit bigger with a Google+ Pages integration.
When Google announced last November that they would be opening the Google+ API to a select group of companies, many dashboard users became very excited. There were a number of social media management apps on the market. HootSuite, along with TweetDeck, Brizzly, and Threadsy were popular among marketing groups and social media teams. But which one would reign supreme?
HootSuite was one of the few that received access to the Google+ API. HootSuite was already a great service used by businesses and individuals alike (HootSuite features a number of social media management plans for various types of users, including a Free Plan for individual personal use). The integration rolled out to much fanfare, but the cheers dwindled a bit when most of the general public found out the Google+ integration was for Pages for Business alone.
HootSuite won’t be handling personal Google+ profiles for the time being, but that’s expected to change. Nevertheless, HootSuite has become one of the first social media management systems to include Google+ integration.
So, what does the Google+ and HootSuite integration mean for users? Obviously, if you’re a Google+ user that subscribes to a number of business pages, you’re likely to see your Google+ stream begin to fill up with a lot more promotions and other business chatter. This increase in marketing messages may be directly related to the HootSuite integration. Why? It’s because businesses are always looking for new and inventive ways to deliver their message. With the Google+ integration into HootSuite, businesses have one more tool in their arsenal. The floodgates are now officially open, but businesses will have to learn that they need to moderate their promotions and postings if they want the public to continue to +1 their messages.
Remember: social media is a two-way communication.
Additionally, Google will be promoting the HootSuite integration almost as much as HootSuite themselves. Google knows that the integration allows businesses to more easily add Google+ into their social media messaging stream – thereby helping Google+ to finally become more of a social player/competitor with Twitter and Facebook. At the same time, Google will likely use the new data stream for their algorithm advancement, potentially making Google+ the next gateway to sharing quality content and reaping SEO rewards. Sounds good to us!
By the way, the HootSuite iPad app hasn’t been updated to include the new Google+ pages access, but it’s sure to arrive soon enough.