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The Sterling Creations team
A WebProNews NEWSLETTER
Google’s Twitter Deal May Impact Your Reputation
Tuesday, March 10, 2015
Last month, we learned that Google and Twitter have
to put real-time tweets back into Google’s search
index after going without them for a few years. Google isn’t
expected to implement tweets into its results in the same fashion it did
when the two companies had a deal in the past (as in a never-ending stream
of real-time content appearing at
the top of search results pages), so it’s hard to know exactly what to
expect. Both companies are staying fairly tight-lipped
about what the new deal will entail. (
Are you looking forward to the implementation of the
deal? Do you want to see more real-time tweets in
Google’s search results?
Let us know in the comments
That said, it is clear that it’s going to mean more real-time
tweets appearing in search results, and that can lead to a
variety of new things to consider.
March shared his thoughts on how the deal might impact
customer service and reputation.
“The biggest challenge and opportunity for businesses using
Twitter for customer service is that every interaction is now amplified,” he
tells WebProNews. “Whether that’s a complaint
from a customer or the company’s response, the agreement between Google and
Twitter places a greater spotlight on each
Does the deal mean reputation-damaging tweets will become a
bigger problem for businesses?
“Absolutely,” says March. “When a customer is searching on Google for a
business, Tweets from customers about issues or
bad service experiences could be on the front page. If businesses have a
social first approach to customer service
then they can tackle these quickly and head on, creating positive
engagements that will show up instead. This deal has
the potential to accelerate the kind of service-related Twitter
crises many brands have already experienced.”
“For companies with a social first approach who are committed
to delivering excellent, fast and authentic social customer service, the
agreement between Google and Twitter has the
ability to spotlight them, and make it very obvious to customers that they
care,” he says. “Companies that have
successfully integrated various social media into their
customer service DNA should be very excited by the
“In addition, previously addressed concerns are now searchable, allowing
customers to potentially self-help,” he
That’s a great point, and if Google does a good job implementing this, these
types of results could easily take the place of forum threads. In a recent
research paper, by the way,
that forum posts are often not very
The question remains: will businesses have any significant control over how
they’re reflected in tweets that actually appear
in search results?
“We don’t have insight into how Google will rank Tweets for search
purposes,” says March. “We can surmise that only a
few Tweets will show up on the first page, since Google has taken such a
consistent, minimalist approach into the results they show. In this case,
the best approach for companies will likely be to offer the best customer
service they can via social
recent Ad Age article
suggested that businesses treat tweets like ads or landing pages to get
users to take action
when they come across them in search results.
“Many brands have treated Twitter as a short term, throwaway
medium – ignoring the longer term impact,” says March. “This
deal makes it very clear that this isn’t the case; the conversations you
have with your customers on Twitter are
here to stay. It underlines the need to treat every Tweet seriously –
whether a marketing message or a customer
If nothing else, the deal would suggest that it’s more critical
than ever for businesses to interact with people mentioning
them on Twitter.
“The social channel has grown up – for some major companies,
it now makes up over 10% of all inbound customer contacts,” March says. “As
communication continues it’s huge shift into
mobile and social, this is only going to keep getting bigger; older digital
service channels like email and chat are gradually
become obsolete. Customers have always punished companies for ignoring them
on social media; the impact of
this is now much bigger.”
Does this mean you should consider the search implications of
every tweet from your brand’s account?
“The agreement between Google and Twitter amplifies conversations that are
already happening, going beyond Retweets and Favorites, and placing them in
front of more people,” says March. “Companies that are effectively
their customers should appreciate the opportunity to have their efforts
shown across the web. The key thing for brands to keep in mind with this is
the same as always – any Tweet sent could
be seen by millions of people. Tone of voice, careful wording,
and offering real, authentic help and resolution remain key to
Eric Enge’s Stone Temple Consulting recently put out some
research about how Google indexes tweets currently. They analyzed 133,000
tweets to see how Google indexed them,
and found that about 7.4% of them were actually indexed, leaving 92.6%
completely left out of the search engine. That tells you how this deal can
potentially impact search results.
There’s room for a hell of a lot more tweets.
Enge’s team found that Twitter accounts with larger follower counts got more
tweets indexed, with more value being placed
on authoritative accounts. They also found that images and/or
hashtags seem to increase a tweet’s chances of getting indexed, while
mentions registered negatively. Links from third-
party sites also appeared to have a significant impact.
More on Stone Temple’s findings and a conversation about this
subject with Enge
Do you expect to be helped by Google’s deal with
Twitter? Hurt by it?
Share your thoughts