Monday, April 22, 2013

Google+ for Business

What Is Google+ and Why Should I Use It?Google+ is a mystery to many, and it is no wonder.  Is it just another social network?  Well, not really.  It boasts a powerful set of tools for business, as well as working as a social network for individuals.
A huge advantage for local organizations/businesses of Google+ right now is that integrates with Google Search. Using the information on Google+ really helps Google search deliver more targeted, relevant traffic. If you put your business/organization on Google+, it helps Google to better understand your the organization, which in turn lets the search engine tailor more targeted results for key words. The best feature of Google+ is certainly the way the service seamlessly plugs into search, Gmail, Local and YouTube.  Also important is the role Google+ plays in search - the more relevant content you have on your Google+ page, the more advantage you will have in natural search. Another possible application your business can utilize is Hangouts. Video conferencing, virtual focus groups, the possibilities are still being discovered.
The basics 
How to set up your Google+ page. These folks say it better than I can, so click the link and read about how to set up your page.

How to set up a Google+ Local Page.  This is very important for businesses with a physical presence. You will want to set up a Google+ Local page so that people can find information about your physical location quickly and easily. Customers will be able to locate maps to your location and will be able to quickly see relevant information, such as business hours and phone number, as well as any information you choose to share.

Beyond the basics
So how do you maximize your Google+ efforts?  There are many ways, and while some follow the usual social media rules, others are unique to Google+.  For example, we all know how important it is to use photos in social media.  Google + takes this to the extreme because it puts a lot of importance on photos. Uploading a lot of relevant photos will increase the buzz around your business and start conversations.  Always use the “recommended links” section on the “About” tab to link to popular blog posts and articles on your company website.  Along the same lines, you need to always cross-promote your blog posts on Google+.  Link those accounts and ensure your website is directly connected to Google+, whether it is a blog-style or a traditional website.  When you have posted links to popular and interesting content, ask your followers to share your posts within their Circles. This is akin to retweeting or sharing on Facebook.  Circles make it easy to segment messages to different audiences, tailoring your message exactly to the audience you select.

Tracking and Ranking
It’s very important to regularly review your performance. Google+ makes that easy with analytics.  Google+ can improve rankings, which is something we all want for our businesses online.  One of the first things you need to do is fill out your information on the about page.  In the other profiles section, make sure your first 3 links are the most important ones, as they will most likely be used in search results.  The same goes for the rest of the profile, make sure you are using appropriate keywords. Anywhere you can include a link, do so, always making the top 3 the most important.  Google+ improves rankings, because you tell it to. Like Facebook and Twitter, Google+ has a “+1” button for business sites that lets web users "+1" a particular page on a website. This is a big help with search engine optimization (SEO), because as traffic grows and 1+’s proliferate, businesses can identify their most popular content.  Google traffic from searches is considerably higher for pages with "+1" buttons. Here's information on adding the button.

Just Do It!
If you were wondering whether or not you should take the plunge into Google+ for your business, the answer is YES. Anywhere you can get this kind of free exposure and increase in ranking for your website is a good thing – and a good time investment for your organization.
We Can Help
Compass Media offers social media marketing plans that can help your business thrive on social media. If you would like to talk to someone regarding social media plans or any marketing services we can provide, please feel free to check out our
website and contact us at 251-967-7551.

Morgan Robinson, Interactive