Google Plus did not have an easy childhood – everyone picked on it and even those who loved Google were reluctant in their move to the new platform. And the moves Google took on to drive the numbers of users up, were…well – sometimes borderline desperate. But after those not-so-successful 2.5 years things are slowly getting better for this network and some of the recent updates and changes mean it’s definitely time to move your business into the Google+ space.
Advertising on Google Plus
In a recent announcement Google revealed the concept of +Post – organic content posts from Google Plus pages, which can be used as ads on Google Display Network. People could then +1 and interact with your posts, with some of them appearing even in Gmail. That gives brands an amazing opportunity to extend the reach and engagement with their social content, often produced at high cost. Given the amount of information Google collects about users across the various products we all use, the targeting options and effectiveness of their advertising product could in theory be much better than those of Facebook or Twitter.
+Posts are still in beta phase, only available to a very few global brands, but we’ll let you know as soon as this becomes available in New Zealand.
Google Plus and SEO
Remember this: If you add a URL into your Google Plus post, any +1s you get will be credited to that link. It’s that simple. Google will now show your posts about certain keywords in search results to people who Circle you. That’s why you need to have as many people circling you as possible and ideally those people should be sharing your posts with their own Circles. In this scenario every piece of content you add to your Google+ page can potentially boost your SEO rankings. So it’s time to start treating your Google Plus page as your next content hub.
Insights, tools and other
Let’s never forget Google+ was developed by one of the most technologically advanced companies of our days. That means you’re not only creating a new social page for your business – it means you are getting access to some pretty cool gadgets, designed to make your life easier. From Circle Sharing, which is pretty much the social equivalent of direct marketing, through Hangouts to Dashboard Insights. All those smart solutions are to be used.
It’s not all great
Of course – it couldn’t be. Just as things started improving for our + friend, Google decided to make a drastic, privacy invading change, allowing anyone within your Circles to email you directly, as long as both of you use Gmail. Which you probably do, since you’re on Google Plus. A very bold move, if you ask me, with no clear benefit to either users or Google itself. It will only generate huge amounts of spam and unopened emails, for which the size of Gmail inbox no doubt will come in handy. We’ll be closely watching what comes out of this change – and it will be as bad as it sounds.
Where to start?
If you want to start building up audience for your Google+ page there are a few things we strongly recommend doing:
- Hashtag, hashtag and then hashtag some more. It’s a great way of becoming a part of a bigger conversation and expanding your reach organically. The hashtags also appear in Google searches, increasing the organic discovery rates;
- Gif it! Everyone loves a gif and currently Google Plus is not only the only social network allowing gifs to be used and played automatically – it gives you tools to create your own gifs.
- Use good quality images, and use them as often as possible. In the digital era picture says more than 1,000 words, and Google+ is no exception.
Enjoy setting up your page and don’t forget to add us to your Circles!