Have you heard recent rumors that Google Plus is going away, due to the recent departure of Google's senior vice president Vic Gundotra?

The search engine giant introduced this social network in 2011, in hopes that it would be a competitor for Facebook.

To build users, Google Plus was integrated across Google's platforms, including YouTube, Gmail, and Hangouts.

It's never had quite the reach of Facebook, but many businesses have created company pages where they can make posts and engage with customers.

At Ripley PR, we have recommended Google Plus pages as a tool within clients' B2B public relations and social media marketing strategies. But is it still a valid use of time and resources?

For basic social media interactions with customers going forward, Google Plus may not be the best option for most companies.

Right now, with the shuffling of more than 1,000 Google employees from the Google Plus team to other parts of the company, it remains to be seen what the future of the social network is. Most analysts believe that it will likely become a platform to link the whole network of Google products.

Along with that, Google Plus may evolve to target more people in the business sector, and there may be opportunities for advertising on the platform in the future. For that reason, we believe it is still worthwhile for our clients to have a Google Plus company page.

We will continue to watch the evolution of this product, and assess how it can help meet the needs of our PR and marketing clients now and in the future.

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