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U.S. State Department Wants To Hang Out With You On Google+

GoogleThe U.S. State Department joined Google+ this week to hang out and converse about foreign policy and answer questions about diplomacy and their effort to sustain a peaceful world. The department already supports pages and a presence on Facebook, Flickr, Tumblr, Twitter and YouTube.

Victoria Esser, who serves as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Digital Strategy in the Bureau of Public Affairs, writes in a blog post that in today's interconnected world, social media offers a powerful way for the State Department to better inform, understand, and engage with the American people and communities around the world on our foreign policy and development goals.

Some marketers consider Google+ an "extra extension" or channel because of the entrance into the social market, and because the numbers of users dwarf other social sites. Well, perhaps not for long.

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The number of people who participate in Google+ with about 100 brands rose from 222,000 in December to 3.1 million in February, but most of the growth resides with the top 10 brands, which collectively have more than 3 million followers, according to BrightEdge.

For the first time, data shows that Google is not the most-followed brand on its Google+ pages. Nine other brands hold that distinction. Coca-Cola rose from being in 1,800 circles to 336,000. H&M is No. 1 with 462,000, followed by Samsung with 372,000; Pepsi, 350,000; Starbucks, 335,000; Sony, 258,000; Intel, 258,000; eBay, 253,000; Google, 194,000; and Amazon, 184,000.

Interestingly, Google racked up nearly 7 million Likes on Facebook, but just 194,000 on its Google+ page.

The BrightEdge SocialShare report, titled "Tracking Social Adoption and Trends," also notes that companies sitting on the sidelines include Goldman Sachs, Microsoft, China Mobile, and Apple.

Putting this all into context, Google co-founder Larry Page places the user count at more than 90 million during the company's last earnings call.

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