With three recent events indicating Google is ramping up efforts with its social network, will 2013 be the year it makes it mainstream? Three recent stories I’ve seen have struck a chord with me. The first was when a colleague highlighted that UK retailer Topshop are using Google+ at the core of its new social media strategy.The whole campaign is catered in the lead up to London Fashion Week, when live on Google+ you will be able to watch the catwalk from the model’s perspective as they are fitted with HD micro-cameras. In the lead up to that, you can start following the models you like now. Incidentally, the Topshop Google+ page is currently in 864,000 circles. By comparison, the Facebook Topshop page has 3.2 million likes. Quite a difference – but not nearly as much a difference as one might think, especially if – as the cynics try to remind us – supposedly no one uses Google+. The second story that caught my eye was on the Google+ effect on breaking news. News was breaking yesterday about Chris Dorner and Google+ results appeared in the top handful of search results for a lot of the day. Considering this was the most searched for news story of the day, that’s really quite interesting. Earlier this week, Eric Schmidt made further announcements about Google Authorship and the trio of events seem to imply an increased prominence Google has been paying to the social network. Google has made it a necessity for the SEO community to be a part of Google+, but recent efforts – high-street retailing and breaking news – bring the network into the mainstream. Although, considering the numbers currently following Topshop on there, perhaps it already is – just no-one is talking about it.