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Google is soon to be (and currently doing so for a select few) giving Advertisers the options of promoting their Google+ content on the GDN network.

This was announced by Eran Arkin on none other than his Google+ page. I get it and I understand why some companies would want to do this, most notably for branding purposes. Yes you can engage people in a more ‘social’ way and in essence, as Google puts it, “make the web your social stream’. Kind of what you would do with Youtube with the flexibility of using Images, posts, hangouts as well as videos to engage your audience.

Well the next question is ‘Why’? Well as mentioned above, social engagement is one thing and the flexibility of this engagement is vast within Google+. However the pro and cons argument doesn’t add up in favour of Google plus.

What using Google+ in GDN will not enable advertisers to do:

  • lead capture (email and other data) – Likes and ‘+s’ is one thing. But what about real solid data like emails, user info etc. Are users that active on Google+ that a + is considered as valuable as other data?
  • Measure and tracking – How can you track and measure real campaign performance? Analytical data is limited on Google+ whereas if you were to send the users to an engaging website experience, data can be used to understand user behaviour and reactions and also optimise the campaign for better performance as it moves on. What about split testing?
  • Cookie options – Well, you are targeting people on the GDN right? Then wouldnt it make send to remarket to them using that very network and bring them back or cross promote other cool media? There are other cool remarketing options such as search remarketing that can be utilised however all this is null and void if you push users to a Google+ page.

Of course there are pros.. but which of these pros cannot be done or effectively replicated with a well developed site and landing page? Video views, Images, sharing, liking, plus, tweet etc are all readily available. Hangouts? Yeh well that is one but in all honesty, its few and far between.

It will be interesting to see the adoption rate and whether companies will happily choose to spend their money pushing paid traffic to Google’s social platform. If and when they do, how will they differentiate themselves and utilise the platform to justify the opportunity cost of not sending traffic to a compelling and engaging website that has already proved beneficial and effective many times over?

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