Have you tried Google+ yet? There is still a lot of mystery surrounding this social media platform and how it affects your business’s search rank in Google. Still, creating a Google+ profile can’t hurt your business—and it just might help. Here are 10 tips to get you started.
1. Create a Personal Google+ Profile. Google+ offers business profiles too, but you need a personal profile first. Signing up is free. Fill in your personal page with as much information as you can about yourself, your business and what you do.
2. Create a Google+ Business Page. Provide as much information as you can about your business. Consider what potential customers might want to know, including your business address, directions, hours and phone number, photos of your location or product photos.
3. Create Circles. Google+ allows you to categorize different people into “circles” and specify which information you share with a particular circle. You can create circles for clients, potential clients, employees, business associates and more; you can also include people in more than one circle.
4. Go Public. In addition to posting content to specific circles, you can also post it to the public. This means it will show up when someone does a Google search. Public posts are a great way to expand your audience by exposing your business to people who may never have heard of you.
5. Be Engaging. Before posting anything to Google+, consider how it will benefit your audience. Content that gets attention usually includes questions, calls to action, photos or videos, or thought provoking comments. Try to limit directly promotional posts about your business to about 10 or 20 percent of what you post.
6. Interact. The more you interact on Google+, the faster you build connections and increase your audience. In addition to posting your own content, share and comment on others’ posts (you’ll see them in your Stream). When you share something, credit the originator and add your own thoughts to spark further conversation.
7. Add Video. Since Google+ is integrated with YouTube (which is owned by Google), putting video on Google+ can attract more followers. Post how-to videos explaining how to use your product or service, or interview someone on your team about a current industry trend.
8. Promote it. Use the Google+ logo and/or the +1 icon on your website, signage and marketing materials to help people find you on Google+.
9. Measure Results. The free Google Analytics tool can help you measure engagement on your Google+ page. See who is following your business, what information they like best and what they’re sharing.
10. Use Third-Party Tools. Looking for tools to help integrate your Google+ account into the rest of your social media plan? Currently, only a few tools exist, but more are being developed all the time.