We live in a hyper-connected world.
From business communication to personal interaction, time spent connecting online continues to grow at a lightning pace.As an entrepreneur or business owner, the key to success is in knowing how to make the most of that time.That’s where Google Plus comes in.Not just a social network, Google+ is a key component within the Google ecosystem.And a major player in getting your business in front of an audience clamoring for your product or service.As Martin Shervington of Plus Your Business puts it,
“Google+ is thriving, especially for those who understand it is an eco-system that extends beyond the platform itself.”
With integrated tools such as Google Hangouts, Google+ becomes a powerful social and marketing tool when leveraged correctly.Having seen the power behind the platform first hand, I am always eager to share the benefits.When I was recently invited to Keynote on the virtues of Google+ at an event in Los Angeles, I leapt at the opportunity.Below are my tips and the Slideshare of that presentation.
Use Google Plus to Generate Massive Exposure
Optimize Your Profile
How long has it been since you last visited your Google+ profile? If it hasn’t been updated since you joined the network, now is the time to make a few changes or additions.With Google+ tied directly to Google search, you don’t want to miss the opportunity to tell your story.And the exciting news?There’s a whole lot of real estate to use within your Google+ “About” section.
Take advantage of this space to:
- Share your special skill set
- Industry niche
- Training and certifications
- Any detail that allows potential clients to make an educated decision
- Links to other social networks, your website, products and services
You want anyone to instantly:
- Understand what differentiates you from the competition
- Identify what you and your business have to offer
- Determine what services or products you offer
- Know how you solve their problems
- See what your tools or systems are that will make their life better or easier
Write Great Content
Great content, written and shared consistently, creates meaningful relationships with your target market.While it might sound simple to pump out great content day in and day out, it’s one of the biggest challenges faced by most marketers.Make sharing great content easy with a swipe file!A swipe file is a virtual notebook, allowing you to capture great ideas as you surf the web.
- Answers to FAQ
- Video explanations of your process
- How-to’s from affinity partners, vendors and peers
Use Google+ Circles to manage the conversations happening within Google+.Not familiar with Circles? The explanation is simple and they’re even easier to use.Circles, similar to Facebook and Twitter lists, let you categorize people based on related topic, industry, hobby or skill.Once categorized, you can use Groups to keep up with posts from your favorite people. It makes commenting and sharing a breeze!
How to Use Circles:
- Share posts with a select group of people to target your specific message
- Post to “public” to allow anyone to view and comment on your content
- Create notification circles to update certain followers e.g. when your latest blog post goes live
- Add people to specific Circles or lists as you follow them to keep things tidy
Join Niche Specific Communities
Google+ Communities are virtual gold mines for linking and engaging with potential clients, like-minded business professionals and anyone sharing similar passions.So, what are Communities?Simply put, they’re a collection of individuals interested in collaborating and discussing common interests.The benefit to business professionals is in the interaction and engagement.You can choose to create your own community where you can foster and maintain relationships with people eager to engage with your business or you can join an already established community.Ready to get started? Begin your search for a perfect Google+ community!
Did you know that posts with images are 87% more likely to get shared than posts without?That’s a compelling reason to start using images in your Google+ posts.But not just any images. Create images that brand your business and tell your story.
With each of your visuals, you want to be:
Don’t fancy yourself a designer? Not proficient with Photoshop?Try the best online design tool for free! With Canva you can choose a template, design your graphic and post to your Google+ profile or page in a matter of minutes.
Use Google+ Hangouts
Google+ Hangouts bring conversations to life through the power of video.Not only can they position you as the go-to expert, but improve your visibility through search and social.
Use Hangouts to:
- Conduct interviews
- Answer questions
- Share success stories
- Provide solutions
As Guy Kawasaki, author of What the Plus! says,
“The potential for businesses and professionals is great - don’t ever forget that this is from Google after all. Your activities on Google+ influence search results. I’d rather be a search engine trying to get social [than] a social site trying to get search.”
I couldn't agree more!If you’re ready to make the most of this powerful tool, see the full presentation on Google+ for Business here:
About Rebekah Radice
Rebekah Radice, co-founder of BRIL.LA, has traded narcissism for purpose. When not driving growth, you'll find her tricking family into thinking she's Emeril Lagasse - likely covered in marinara. The spotlight was fun, but impact is better. These days she's using 20+ years of brand brilliance for good.