AKB48 Pulls their Trump Card

Funnily enough, just when I asked in my previous post if AKB48 had any more news in store for 2011, they dropped one of the biggest game changers of the year.

There was an announcement that an event would take place live on AKB48’s youtube channel where they would reveal a new project, and it couldn’t have come at a better time. What was it about? Well, Garry wrote an article about it and I stated it on the “Top 5 Wishlist” podcast; In a time when the internet was being taken advantage of by idol groups in ways we wished the 48 groups would, management was holding onto a trump card. And that trump card is Google+.

Producer Akimoto Yasushi and Google Product Management VP Bradley Horowitz talked about AKB48’s(and SKE’s and NMB’s) integration with Google+, emphasizing the level of engagement fans will be able to have with members. They advertised Google+ as a more natural platform for members to share information and interact with fans, and can even hold “hang outs”, which are limited simultaneous video chatrooms. In addition to individual member content, there is of course, the big news we’ve all been waiting for: live streaming of concerts and events.

There’s lots of potential here, and it looks like the promotion is working so far. Popular members already have over ten thousand followers(checking it recently, it’s more like 20k), many of which I’m sure never gave Google+ a second thought prior to this news, and it has quickly transformed into something of a 48 paradise, humming with activity from both fans and the members. If management and members get used to using this format and use it often, I can see this becoming THE center of activity for 48 groups. It looks like a smart move for both Google+ and AKB; AKB finally steps forward to catching up with the current digital age, and Google+ gets tens of thousands of followers in one fell swoop.


As someone who rarely even uses Facebook, I was pretty impressed by some of the new and elegant solutions they brought to the table, particularly in grouping and settings. The night of the announcement, a lot of us at NSK were adding members and fellow idol fans to our circle and even made use of the “hang out” feature with NSK staff and followers. Google+ is something I would recommend getting, even if you’ll be using it just for the live streaming. If you’re a fan of the 48 brand, this is a must.

You can see all the members available here.

Active NSK members on Google+:
Dae Lee
Garry MacKenzie
Anthony Hagiwara
Dave Chang


About Dae Lee

-Dae, aka Mizu -Writer, broadcaster, and podcaster on New School Kaidan

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  1. You guys was using the hang out system too? Hmm could Justin.tv be in trouble? Lol jk

    I think it’s genius. AkiP has made the next step towards world domination, together with Google lol.

    2012 will be interesting on Google+ for sure. We soon may not see the ameblo again.

  2. What to say about this, well it’s like the ultimate example of what great Marketing is all about, both for google and AKB

  3. DOPE. Man, I love G+ and was disappointed when none of my friends converted over or even made an account. So my G+ died quick. But I still use it to talk with folks in JP and practice my Japanese..

    Now G+ will be so much more for me. I needa get NSK on my G+

  4. Just because of this, I might be on G+ more often. Oooo, but I’m so o excited to join a hangout with Mayuyu! OH WAIT, they didn’t make one for her. . . ( T_T)

  5. I joined Google+, but have absolutely no clue how to use it. It seems interesting though. WHY is there no Komori Mikaaa!?!?

    • Yea, it seems like the members unavailable are those that are under 18. I don’t know for sure yet if they’re going to let there be an exception or not for the remaining 48 members. I wanna add mah Kondo Rina!

      edit: Garry told me all the members under 18 have been put under one special account here.

  6. Ya’ll missed out on a sweet hangout where we talked about random idol stuff and I let everyone hear my awesome Scottish accent. You guys should sign up so you don’t miss out again in the future.

  7. ^Captain Price!!! Too bad i fell asleep mid-way through the hangout. STUPID TYLENOL!! >:(

  8. Okay, listen… I was so excited about this at first. But now, its really ripping my soul apart.

    This is just too close… It feels so weird being around so many live conversations with them. I’ve been intereacting and posting at the same time they are.. NOT that they’ve replied to me, they usually speak amongst themselves.. but to write something on Sae’s comment and have yukirin post underneath me is giving me a FUCKING panic attack.

    I had to send mad love to amina, su and sasshi. But wow.. I actually am starting to hate this. because now that i can talk to them and they ignore me, it kills me haha. And also, like I said.. im bugging the fuck out. LITERALLY. ITS almost like I actually know them IRL.. they’re all posting atm nonstop..

    Being first to comment on a post is cool, but having yukirin post under me.. that’s like, better than a handshake event for me.

    Wait, im just bugging out.. obviously that isn’t tru. but DAMN.. hat has aki done.. this is too much.. I have live AKB members as friends on a social networking site?!

    this is probably a dream, yeah.

    • JESUS fuckin site always gives me errors when i go to comment. I WANT TO SAY good morning to Rie… Now someone beat me to it and mine wont post at all.

      WELL this ruined MY night. Not being able to wish Rie a good morning ruined not only today, tommorow, but my whole chrismas spirit.

      Bah humbug

    • Idols you can meet bro. Idols you can meet.

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