Google announced its Google+ social networking service to businesses, universities and schools which has made many in the industry quite glad.
However, one may need to use Google Apps as well, along with their business Google+ profiles and could prove to be a little daunting at the first go. Google Apps for Business costs $5 a month and you would also need to have your own domain and considering that we are talking about businesses, it might not be such a tall order after all. Once you are sure that your Google Apps account is ready, you could set up Google+ as well.
Before setting up Google+ for your business account using Google Apps, you would also need to enable Google Talk and Picasa Web Albums. Once you set these services for your Google Apps for business, you can actibvate Google+ as well. However, the key is not to set up the account but to make sure that your business Google+ account is as professional and clutter free as well. For instance, you might not want to ‘brag’ about your drinking habits, if you want your customers to respect you.
Once you set up your Google+ profile for your business, you can go ahead and invite all your friends and acquaintances so that you can begin sharing and networking. Once again, you would need to be sure that what you share is purely professional and not personal in nature. Google+ for businesses will not replace Facebook if you asked me but might cause a little resentment among the bigwigs of LinkedIn. With the help of Google Apps, Google Docs and a search engine that virtually all the businesses of the world depend, Google+ might still offer better services than LinkedIn, almost.
By now it is quite clear that Google’s social networking ventures have been received with little excitement and those who swear by it are mostly technocrats and geeks who are well versed with Internet. Whether or not Google+ for businesses will be a success should not be a question. Instead, I would see it as an additional and complementary service to other business networking services. One size will not fit all, and there might be people who may find Google+ valuable, there may be some who may not. By the way, Google+ had recently begun to allow users to use Pseudonyms.