• Google+ vs. LinkedIn: Who Wins in B2B?

    Since the explosion of social media, digital marketing has become an indispensable tool for marketers, especially in the B2B industry. And for several years, both Google Plus and LinkedIn have been competing for the top position among business networks.Each platform comes with its own set of unique features and characteristics, but which one brings more value to a B2B?

    LinkedIn has been in the B2B game since 2003 and boasts over 300 million members. Amongst many other things, they offer a small business resource center to address issues as professional branding and dwindling sales problems.

    Google+ launched in June of 2011 and while it is much more of a social networking site, you cannot argue the many B2B benefits and opportunities there.

    So which site offers a bigger bang for your B2B buck, the long-standing champion (LinkedIn) or the new challenger (G+)?  In the long run, who really wins?

    A Look at Google+

    Even though they are the newcomer, Google+ is clearly the Goliath to LinkedIn’s David in sheer mass and web traffic. Although numbers change, at the writing of this article, Alexa, a recognized website traffic monitor, shows Google (the search engine anyway) at the number one slot and LinkedIn at a distant number ten. Google also owns YouTube which is at number three just under the social media giant Facebook.

    Some thought that the introduction of Google+ would be the death of Facebook, but now those same people have complaints about the launching of the site, specifically the lack of a business page at the time of release. Although added later, this “half-launch” seemed almost out of character for the Google giant and left a bad taste in some potential user’s mouths.

    But don’t count G+ out of the race just yet as they have many other valuable tools to offer their business clientele, such as integration with YouTube, a wide variety of apps, statistics, advertising tools and probably most important, the cloud technology available through Google Drive.

    Examining LinkedIn

    Perhaps the best quality about LinkedIn is that it was specifically designed for the application of business to business use. This gives it a larger advantage as it is geared more towards starters and small enterprises seeking marketing and business professionals.

    For example, LinkedIn offers its users daily business articles that are specifically customized for each member. LinkedIn also has the ability to target individuals in a certain business whether you are seeking an audience with the receptionist or the president of the company.

    Even though LinkedIn is geared specifically towards business, some will still say that, at it’s heart it is still a social media site. It is probably best to examine thoroughly exactly what LinkedIn has to offer, especially when compared to the competition.

    But why choose just one?

    Some experts would say both are essential to your business. Maybe there is no clear winner here as it seems as though it is still too soon to call the game and declare a victory for either side.

    But if this were a tennis game, it would be safe to say that the first set goes to LinkedIn and although the match still isn’t over yet, advantage LinkedIn over the challenger Google+.

    Hilary Smith is a business writer and technology enthusiast from Illinois. In addition to researching the importance of digital marketing in the B2B industry, her writing also covers business telecommunications, virtual technology, and internet marketing. Find and follow her on Twitter today!

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