As the dust settles on Google’s launch of Google+ Pages for brands and businesses yesterday, we’ve dug a little deeper into the terms of service that each brand must adhere to on the network and found something very interesting.
One policy of Google+ Pages states that brands and businesses “may not run contests, sweepstakes, offers, coupons or other such promotions” directly on their pages. Instead, brands must link to contests on external websites or alternative social networks. Many brands, including ourselves, run competitions directly on networks like Facebook and Twitter so this may come as a surprise.
Google say they’ll take a hard-line with any offenders. Additional terms of service for Google+ Pages states that Google reserves the right to delete such promotion content from Google+ Pages, or even block or remove a brand’s Google+ Page altogether.
Earlier this year, Google came under fire for their real-name policy on Google+, which they were later forced to relax. It’s unclear as to why Google wants to prevent brands from using promotions and competitions directly on Google+ to interact with users, and even more unclear as to how they’ll police such a policy.
Another interesting but more agreeable term of service for Google+ Pages will possibly see inactive pages deleted after nine months.
So why not Circle us on our brand new Google+ Page? We won’t be running any competitions but we do promise to shamelessly link to our own content and engage with those that leave a comment.