Ford becomes first auto brand on Google+

Global automotive brand Ford has become one of the first consumer brands to launch a page on the new Google+ social networking site.

It launched two accounts for fans last week, beating all of its competitors and immediately garnering new fans with its apt strapline "we like social media."

Although official pages for brands (in the form that they exist on Facebook) haven't yet been launched by Google+, the automaker has already found some unique ways to engage those that have it in their Circles (the Google+ equivalent of a friendship group).

The users who have early access to Google+ have already been taking part in caption competitions set up by Ford, as well as commenting and offering "+1" on links that it has posted.

According to a report by Clickz.com, the automaker plans to run a web chat July 6 to test the Google+ chat feature, with the "Huddle" conversation one of the site's most promising features for brands that could lead to new ways for customers to interact with automakers.

"The Huddle chat capability has potential for webinars, analyst calls, even customer service [uses] for people to have a face-to-face experience of the brand," Ford's social media boss Scott Monty told Clickz.com.

Although Google is keeping the floodgates closed to most users for now, it will be interesting to see how Ford decides to engage using Google+ in the future - and how long it takes other automotive brands to back its early-adoption strategy with a "+1" of their own.

Ford: https://plus.google.com/114277687548103339609/posts
Ford in Europe: https://plus.google.com/101706905424480603755/posts

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