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UK newspapers have nearly half as many followers on Google+ as Facebook

New data about 13 top UK national newspaper web sites, shows they already have nearly half as many combined followers for their Google+ pages (544,545 ) as they do for their Facebook pages (1,284,674).  And this is despite four of the 13 newspapers not even having a Google+ page yet. 

So on that basis at least Google+ growth is showing some good momentum. 

The figures come from a study by Searchmetrics, which also found that had the biggest number of followers (ie people who had the FT’s Google+ page in their circles), but Daily Mail and Telegraph web sites had the most +1 recommendations for articles on their sites (a +1 is similar to a Facebook Like – an endorsement/recommendation  for a web page).

The most frequently +1’d article for was a story about how the majority of runway models meet the Body Mass Index (BMI) criteria for anorexia, which had been shared 837 times.  The’s most frequently +1’d article was a news story about an EU ban which prevents water brands from claiming that water prevents dehydration (1110), and the achieved 1,142 +1s for a story about the crackdown on Occupy. 

So the stories that Google+ users are engaging with indicate – as this Econsultancy article points out – that stereotypes about reader profiles and interests for the various newspapers still apply online.

For the record, here is the data which was put out by Searchmetrics:

UK National Newspapers sites and Google+ visibility (19 March 2012) 

Site No of Google+ followers Average +1s per week 372,159 
75,255 3,367
60,195 2,812
35,490 10,493 1,087 5,822 149 211 110 69 99
22 1 (recently constructed page) 28 No Google+ page found 35 No Google+ page found 827 No Google+ page found 10 
No Google+ page found 5