If you’re a business beginning to get involved with Google+, we’ve got some tips and tricks to help you get ahead and stand out. Read on to find out more…
Why Google+? The power of personal recommendation
As well as the search engine benefits, being active on Google+ is a great way to reach an audience heavily interested in technology and the web – ideal for web hosts, freelancers, digital agencies and other creatives to get new clients.
Google+ builds on the traditionally powerful recommendation factor associated with social networks. Personal suggestions are one of the most crucial aspects of building a successful business, particularly if you’re completely based online, starting from scratch, in a competitive industry, or working on a low budget. Not only will your Google+ statuses be seen by those who have added you, but followers (and potentially their followers) will also see promoted search results.
Launching your Google+ page
Once you’ve created your page, it’s time to add some interesting content. Setting the tone of your Google+ page is particularly important as it will give people a reason to add you to their circles, so make sure you have good content prior to announcing your presence on the site, and be clear about what you’re going to be doing with the channel in your own mind. If you can’t think of anything different to do or you only have limited time, it’s still worth having a passive presence there.
Don’t forget to add a Google+ button to your website and share your page from your other social networks. Many people assume that people will do a search and find them, but that’s not always the case so make sure you have a clear button or widget. Using promotions, blog entries and emails can also help you gain followers, as can exclusive content such as free resources.
Tips and Tricks
Although there are plenty of similarities between Google+ and other big networks such as Facebook, there are also some significant differences. The subtle features of Google+ are easy to miss with a quick skim, but regular users will find them extremely useful.
Tip: To tag someone in a post, enter a + symbol and then begin typing their name. This works for both businesses and individuals.
Trick: In addition to mentioning people and companies, you can also tag yourself and colleagues in a post for authorship purposes. This will show a link between your professional Google+ page with your personal Google+ profile, giving a personal feel to your updates as well as proving authenticity.
Editing your Posts
Tip: Unlike most other social networks, you can edit your status updates even after they’re published. Edited messages will have a little ‘(edited)’ tag after the date.
Trick: This is great for adding additional information without losing +1s and comments, for example if there’s an update to a new story or you want to clarify a point you’ve made.
Linking to Google+ Posts
Tip: To link to a post on G+, simply click the arrow to the right of it for a drop down menu. After choosing ‘Link to this post’, you’ll get a pop up box with the URL to copy and paste:
Copy post URLs in a couple of clicks.
Trick: Find out more about your own posting influence by seeing the circles you’ve been added to.
Tip: In the same menu, you can also choose ‘View Ripples’ to get an idea of who has shared the post and their influence. This shows the power of Google+ and why it’s worth devoting some time to an active presence.
Trick: This feature is publicly available, so head over to your competitors’ pages and find out which posts are the most shared and who their biggest influencers are.
Boosting social with hangouts
Tip: Google+ offers user-friendly hangouts, allowing up to 10 people to chat ‘face to face’ for free.
Trick: Tailor hangouts to your business for maximum impact. For example, if you run a business with a physical product, offer a workshop, demonstration or tutorial session. This works particularly well for things like food, crafts and hardware. Even if your business is more service based, working with clients on such a personal level is a great way to access global markets for free.
Take a look at some of these great guides for making the most of Google+: