While acknowledging Google+ has nowhere near the scale of Facebook, FT community manager Rebecca Heptinstall argues that it reaches a slightly different, more specific audience.
She says: “We wanted to create additional touch points for our readers, allowing them to read FT content where and how they choose.”
She also says that FT is ahead of the publishing pack with its use of Google+, with more followers than, for example, The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times.
The FT has focused on the visual nature of Google+ and has deployed rich-media content, such as videos, images and infographics. Recent examples of content on FT’s Google+ page include analysis of North Korea’s nuclear capabilities.
The publisher is now developing the Google+ “hangout” feature and offering more opportunities for readers to interact with its editorial team.
The print edition of the FT has just posted an average net circulation drop of 1.67% for May, month-on-month, to 300, 584, down 16.34% for the six month period November 2011 to May 2012.