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Putting the Plus in Google+

30 Oct 2013 | Posted Under Internet
By Hector Cisneros

If you are using, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube or Twitter for your business but not using Google+, then 
Google Appliance as shown at RSA Expo 2008 in ...
you’re missing one of the biggest boats in the social networking ocean. In fact, Google Brand pages are tied into Google Search, Google Local and Google Maps all of which contain the magic word "Google". In addition, since Google now controls 81% of search, you should be thinking Google if you want to put a big plus in both your social networking and search optimization.

Google+ officially originally launched on June 28, 2011without brand pages and later added them so that businesses could create their own unique presence on Google's social network. Google has continued to improve its social network and its Brand page by further integrating its other Google properties and applets in to the Google+ fold. Specifically they have added more robust and complete navigation system, a more complete and integrated profile, updated tabs functionality and more in-depth drop down capabilities within any functions. Google+ always had an edge on the competition for ease of use, now it also has greater depth and power as well.

Add Up all the Features

Google+ has also updated its format several times since its inception. Its newest format moves the main navigation menu to the left side as a drop down element. New elements that have been added include "What's Hot "and" Communities functions. What's Hot shows you trending posts that are unique and getting lots of play on Google+.  Communities is Google's version of Groups. Both of these functions are robust  yet they are easy to use and are fully integrated with all other Google apps and properties.

Here are some of my favorite feature and elements in Google+ Brand pages:  
  1. First and foremost is the ease of use and high integration of Google applets and properties. 
  2. Adding blog posts, YouTube videos and pictures are a snap. 
  3. If you properly setup Google's plus 1 system on your website and other social nets, you will make it easy for others to connect and recommend you.  
  4. You will also receive additional information on how visitors are using your Brand pages.
  5. Google's "Ripples" provide post statistics showing how people in your circles are utilizing your post. Its graphic display is unique and intuitive to understand. It shows how items have been shared.

Do You Hangout?

Looking for an easy way to create useful video content?  Hangouts is a built-in teleconferencing facility that 
Image representing YouTube as depicted in Crun...
you can even use to create conferences or broadcast webinars. By enabling Hangouts on air, you can also simultaneously create a YouTube video of your event.  What could be simpler? When you consider that visual content has the highest clickthrough rate of any content, this is a G+ facility that con't be beat. It also has the highest share rate. Google Hangouts provides relatively high end functionality at zero cost to your businesses. What's not to like?

Leveraging Brand Pages for Search

Since G+ is part of the Google family, there are search engine optimization benefits from linking your website and other relevant internet properties to your Google+.  Make sure all your Google properties include relevant keywords. Also, make sure the "about tab" contains targeted keywords as well. Include + links to your blogs, website, landing pages, directories,  and other social sites.

If you are looking to maximize your exposure, also make sure all your Google properties, (especially Google local and Google maps) are complete and verified. Make sure all your websites and social properties have Google +1 badges and share badges so that people can easily plus and share you when they visit.
Make sure you have a fully filled out profile. All sections need useful content. 

Provide value added service by providing deep information posst on your products and services. Provide 
Google ????(Google Refrigerator)
educational and support hangouts for your products and services. Provide interesting, fun and entertaining posts targeted at specific segments of your circles. Provide posts on a regular basis, (daily if possible).  Use Hootsuite or other aggregation software to schedule posts and provide RSS feeds  from your favorite content sites including your blogs.

Share the wealth by cross promoting content on your Google Brand pages to your other social sites like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Pintrest. Don't forget to utilize to power of YouTube with your Brand pages.

Typical Client Content Posting 

·         Here is a typical posting schedule I use for some of my clients Brand pages.
  •               *  Cross promote posts of useful content to the top 5 social nets.
  •               *     Daily  forwards/share/retweets of  content.
  •               *   Weekly or monthly promos for your products or services. (This needs tobe a soft sell of an                  outstanding offer.)
  •               *   Weekly or monthly Hangouts providing useful  information for your targeted audience.
  •               *     Weekly blog posts cross promoted to all social nets.
  •               *  Weekly YouTube video post cross promoted across all social nets.
  •               *  Weekly, bi-weekly or monthly email newsletter linked to your blog, vlogs and/orYouTube                    videos.

Create in-house policies for new clients to connect with you on their social nets. Whenever possible encourage clients to post positive reviews on Google Local or any social or review site to which they are connected.

While many pundits still consider Google+ a big zero, when you factor in all the features and benefits of using Google's business-friendly social network, all I can say is the for my money the pluses far outweigh the minuses.

Hector Cisneros is a partner, COO and social media director for WSquared Media Group based in Jacksonville, FL. You can connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, and YouTube. He is also the co-host of Blog Talk Radio’s “Working the Web to Win,” where he and Carl Weiss make Working the Web to Win simple for every business. Hector is a syndicated writer for EzineOnline and is an active Blogger, (including ghost writing) and he is a published author of two books, 60 Seconds to success (on sale at Amazon and B&N) and Internet Marketing for the 21st Century which you can get free by clicking on the link at He is an active Boy Scout Leader, enjoys family time, loves the outdoors, reading and the creative process of designing effective internet marketing solutions for his clients. 

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