It’s hard for me to give business owners advice about Google+ without going into all of the products Google has to offer. This is because Google+ wasn’t meant to be a social media entity on its own like you would think of Facebook or Twitter, but just one of the many services Google provides to individuals and businesses as part of their “seamless online experience”. Whether we’re talking about YouTube, Google Places, Google+, Google Local… they all integrate into your Google account so that sharing, searching, and finding local places is seamless.
With that being said, I want to share with you some ways to OWN your Google profiles so that you can enhance your online presence, be found easier online, and interact with people who follow you on Google+.
Take advantage of Google Authorship
If you own your business, or are a spokesperson or contributor to your employer’s blog, it’s advantageous to both of you to set-up a personal Google+ profile, fill it out completely and take advantage of Google Authorship. Google Authorship allows you to list the blogs you contribute to and will pull up your headshot and profile in search results every time you post to the blog(s) listed. More on Google Authorship here.
Claim your business on Google Places
If you own a brick and mortor business, you should claim your profile on Google Places and fill it out completely. Owning your Google Places profile allows you to control what people see when they search for your business. You can include pictures, hours of operation, analytics behind your reviews and much, much more. More on Google Places here.
Verify your Google+ page/Make a Google Local page
This is where it gets confusing. Google has three separate products that if done correctly are a powerful way to boost your presence online. If you are a brick and mortor pay attention. If you’ve claimed your Google Places page and are ready to create a Google Local page all you need to do is head to your Google+ profile (personal), go to Pages, hit create page, hit local and then search for your business. Once you have gone through the entire process and verified your business, Google will merge all three accounts so that users see your business on the Google map, and reviews are automatically added to your Google+ page. More about that here.
Put the Google+ badge on your website
The Google+ badge allows visitors to engage with you on Google+ directly from your website. It’s key in getting more followers on Google+ and enhancing your web visitor’s experience. You can get the badge here.
Content that works well on Google+
- Exclusive content
- Long form content
Ways to enhance your Google+ profile
- Segment your audience through Circles
- Host Hangouts
- Take advantage of the events feature
- Complete your profile including a catchy tag line that is brief, precise and interesting
- Use Hashtags
- Customize your posts with bold, italics
- Tag others with the + symbol (or @ symbol)
Tools to check out
- Hootsuite and Buffer app both allow you to schedule posts ahead of time
- CircleCount.com allows you to identify influencers on Google+
- Google Ripples allows you to see per post metrics
- Google Analytics
Have questions? Leave a comment!