It Is 2013 Counselors: Why Lawyers Should Bother with Google Plus
Given all the ubiquitous dissatisfaction aimed towards Google Plus, you may find it eye-opening or comical that I am dedicating a blog post to encouraging you to take a break from Facebook or Twitter and give Google Plus another try. I had never been anti-Google Plus, I just never understood how it could exceed the high standards already set by Twitter and Facebook. My stance on Google Plus changed when I started using YouTube for our marketing efforts and of course, the launch of Google Plus for business (but that is a subject for another article). However, before we welcome Google Plus’ life-altering changes, let’s take a look at the not-so-glorious existing statistics on its usage.
Change Is Coming
When Google+ was first rolled out, it was seen with a bright, promising future and was ranked number 8 on Nielsen’s top social networking sites chart, to everyone’s surprise. Fast-forward to today, in contrast, Google+ yields a minimal 18 percent of the social networking market, which is unshakably dominated by Facebook and everything else.
It is undeniably depressing when you attempt to search about Google Plus’ previous accomplishments, because all you see is how big brands do not even care to create an account on Google Plus. However, now is October, 2013, according to the “social media era’s calendar”, five years have elapsed since the Business Insider called Google Plus a “desolated wasteland” five months ago, or should I say, a revolution ago.
Experts may say despite Google’s earlier launch of the Google Plus Sign-In to encourage app developers to integrate Google Plus with apps, they still stay convinced that it is not making a profound impact in the social media world, which is taken over by Facebook and Twitter. But hold your conclusion horses. Recently, TechCrunch announced the exciting news “Google+ May Finally Matter” which will make you applaud Google’s efforts at complementing Google Plus’ deficiencies by allowing it to join forces with the most powerful video titan, YouTube, in order to give Google Plus a massive, much-needed makeover.
Starting last week, YouTube unleashed a new commenting system, powered by Google Plus, to move relevant comments and comments made by people you care about to the front, and also endow your comments more privacy. In short, you will soon need a Google Plus account to be able to comment on YouTube videos. This may be the smartest move Google has made since the acquisition of YouTube.
So What Does That Mean for Lawyers?
Video marketing has defined the new wave of legal marketing. Videos of lawyers on YouTube are more common than ever, and the quality of videos is also improving. Gerry Oginski, a renowned video marketing expert, has published an article “Stop Thinking That Your Attorney Video is An Advertisement; It’s Not. It’s a Teaching Opportunity” to reiterate that videos are the essential tool for lawyers to reach out to potential clients. Oginski stresses that creating informative videos commensurates with doing public service and it is never about yourself.
So Why Does Google Plus Matter Now?
Based on AYTM Market Research, 60% of survey respondents “use Gmail as their main email services” and 61% use YouTube to watch videos. These numbers represent a bigger picture of the Internet constitution, where Google proudly dominates and occupies the online hemisphere. On top of that, with GlobalWebIndex’s latest research indicates that Google Plus has replaced Twitter as the second largest social network, with a total of 359 million active users; on the other hand, Google claims it has 500 million Google Plus accounts. You can argue that the source of the number remains ambiguous and mysterious, but the significance of video marketing is undeniable.
My Experience with Google Plus
My journey of being the Google Plus advocate was originated from my success with video marketing on YouTube. We launched our YouTube Channel in 2010, not really knowing what to expect. After the first few videos, I realized that people were actually watching and responding! Presenting ourselves in the form of videos sparked the general public’s interest in our services. Don’t ever underestimate the magic of you personally appearing in a video, simply answering a short question. Clients want to see the real you, how you would interact. We were getting direct calls to the office from viewers that wanted to learn more and work with us. Gradually, we established credibility and became trustworthy experts. More importantly, other media outlets started sharing our videos.
Believe it or not, Google Plus will matter more so now is time to jump on the wagon. With the integration of Google Plus and YouTube, you’ll easily be able to syndicate your YouTube comments on Google Plus, and then conveniently share the video you were talking about. By doing so ignites replies, resulting in more engagement. At the end of the day, engagement is really what matters in social media; and if you are serious about building an indestructible audience base, you cannot afford to turn your back on Google Plus’ calling.
No more excuses for you to delay brushing up on your videology skills. Thought leaders, start developing in-depth and intriguing content that will penetrate through the Communities and echo loudly on Google Plus, and leap ahead.