Lesotho-born and raised, Nancy Messieh, The Next Web's Middle East Editor, is an Egyptian writer and photographer based in Cairo, Egypt. Fol Lesotho-born and raised, Nancy Messieh, The Next Web's Middle East Editor, is an Egyptian writer and photographer based in Cairo, Egypt. Follow her on Twitter, her site or Google+ or get in touch at [email protected]
With the continuous back-and-forth on Google+, with its critics calling it a ghost-town, and some fighting back, Google is pulling out the big guns, with its first TV ad campaign in the UK.
Marketing Week reports that the company’s first UK above-the-line campaign focuses on what Google+ has to offer, and what Facebook and Twitter don’t.
This is not Google’s first foray into the traditional advertising space. While it, unsurprisingly, relies almost entirely on online advertising, the company has produced its fair share of TV ads. It spent a whopping $70 million on them in the US last year, accounting for almost 33% of of its entire $213 million advertising budget, according to the Wall Street Journal. The year before, Google spent a mere $6 million on TV ads in the US.
While this campaign is a first for the UK, it isn’t a first for the social network. A Google+ ad featuring The Muppets taking part in a Hangout ran on US TV during the Academy Awards in February. Google’s entire advertising budget for its social network in the US is said to have reached about $12 million.
The UK campaign is taking a slightly different approach to promoting the social network. Using the tagline, ‘That’s the plus’, it focuses on how Google+ brings real-life sharing qualities to the online world.
While the US TV ad used a fun and light-hearted angle, the UK campaign taps more into an emotional space, with examples of how Google+ allows families to share special moments together.
Google+’s star feature, Hangouts, will of course make a significant appearance in the campaign, while also emphasizing the Circles feature.
Speaking to Marketing Week, Google’s EMEA director Obi Felten said, “We realised we needed to drive awareness and show how Google+ is relevant and meaningful to people’s lives as it’s not easy to understand in one sentence – the best way to educate people about a product is to demonstrate it.”
In January, Google announced that the social network had passed the 90 million user mark, with a daily engagement rate of 60%, but the social network has its work cut out for it in the UK. According to ComScore figures, rival Facebook takes up 18% of UK users’ entire time spent on the Internet, while Google+ gets just about 0.01%.
UK use of the social network has, however, been highlighted by the presence of major local media outlets, including the Financial Times and The Telegraph, enjoying a strong presence on Google+, while three of the UK’s top political leaders, David Cameron, Nick Clegg and Ed Milliband all signed up for the service.
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