Google Plus History
You may be one of the many skeptics of Google+ in the world of endless social platforms. However, no one can diminish the power of Google+, even if it is not one of the biggest platforms on the scene. Since its start in 2011, Google+ has evolved to fit its users’ needs. Google+ started mostly for the tech-savvy among us. It was an exclusive platform, where digital voyagers could only access it with an invitation from a current Google+ user.
Now, everyone with a gmail account is automatically signed up for a Google+ account. Google+ stands out amongst its competitors because it pulls many of Google’s best apps/features (i.e. Google Maps) into one harmonious Google+ place. Personal users aside, Google+ has been effective for many B2C and B2B companies who desire to increase their reach and relationship with consumers throughout the buyer’s journey. So how can small B2B companies use Google+? We will explain with ten tips as we embark on this Google+ voyage together.
A Beginner’s Tip Guide to Google Plus
Tip #1: Hit the Bullseye with Google+ Circles – Think of Google circles like the groups that you encounter in everyday life, but on Google+. You have your friend, family and professional groups that you interact with everyday face-to-face, and now you have a digital group to segment these individuals, too.
For SMBs, this means segmenting your partners and different target market segments. Circles allow businesses to control and alter the message to fit what they are interested in reading. Another feature is the ability for Google+ users to edit their profile so some circles can see specific information on their profile and others cannot. However, heed these warnings:
- Share Lightly – As with many social platforms, it is easy to share something that is seemingly “private”. Businesses can share exclusive content among their circles, however, those in their circle can share their content on their own Google+ accounts.
- The Ghost of Circle’s Past – As we all know, nothing on the Internet truly disappears. For Google+ Circles, that means even when your company deletes a circle, information previously shared remains on Google+.
Tip #2: Do I Know You? – For emerging businesses, one of the biggest hurdles is brand awareness. However, there are hurdles at every stage of business development, from introducing a new product to becoming an established name in the industry. It’s not easy, but Google+ can be the catalyst you need in your marketing and business endeavours. Google+ is connected to Google’s search engine, which can mean big things for your company if you play your cards right. Having a page with great content, information about your business, and increasing connections with others in the Google+ world can give your company the added boost it needs in search results. Also, keeping up with others in your industry or field can help your company increase its brand awareness among potential leads and professional peers. PS: Adding images of your business will also increase your company’s SEO.
Tip #3: Google is King – Many of us have heard by now that Google is King when it comes to SEO (and there’s a reason for that). Make sure you are utilizing all of Google resources to ensure your Google+ page is high ranking in SERPs (search engine results pages). For example, make sure your business is on Google Maps and that it is on your Google+ page, along with your company’s website link and other relevant links. Additionally, maintaining visibility means posting consistently. Marketing automation tools with a social media integration, like Oktopost, can help you easily maintain your social media. Oktopost also has additional features, like its “Content” feature that makes suggestions for content, which can help you continue to be a trusted advisor to your target audience.
Tip #4: Want to Bring a Plus One? – Google continues to define the consumer decision process by reducing the amount of steps in making a purchasing decision. Google even has its own take on the purchasing process, called the Zero Moment of Truth. Additionally, many companies are seeing a shift in advertising to peer reviews becoming increasingly popular source of trusted information among consumers. Reviews help define alternatives available when picking a restaurant to a consumer’s choice of makeup. From microinfluencers to friends and family, consumers have a wide range of sources to help them make a decision.
With the Google+ One button, users can let other connections know their recommendations, which will come up on Google+, Google search results, and Google ads. B2B companies can utilize this tool by asking their consumers to use the Plus One tool to recommend them. Additionally, asking consumers to review your company is similar and can be helpful in increasing SEO. However, do not have too many consumers fill out reviews at one time for your place of business. Even if these reviews are legitimate, it may appear that employees are filling out reviews for your company instead of consumers because most of the reviews are coming from the same IP address.
Tip #5: Keeping Up with the Consumers – Not as luxurious as Keeping up with the Kardashians, but still very important to your business is making sure you keep your leads and consumers up-to-date with the latest company events. Connecting with your consumers through your Google business account (connected to your Google+ page) can range from a variety of activities. Through Google+, you can let your consumers know about contests, offer special promotions, news and more. Marketers have the added bonus of being able to tag others within post. This feature allows marketers the ability to create campaigns that could be Google+ specific or span across platforms. This allows for a more seamless conversation between the consumer and the company.
Google Plus: Your Verdict?
Despite your stance on Google+, the platform appears to be here to stay, so make sure you are getting the most out of it for your business. Social media is becoming more effective in generating ROI and can be a strong strategy in conjunction with other marketing efforts in increasing lead generation. Now that you know the benefits of Google+, you can trek into the Google+ world with confidence.