Google+ for business has continued to be a growth market for businesses and for search engine optimization.
Google+ has definitely succeeded where their previous attempts at harnessing social media have failed. Remember Google Buzz or Google Wave?
Google Plus reached 100 million users faster than Facebook (which took what, four years?) and Twitter it took even longer to eclipse 100 million. Google may have finally created the social network they were hoping for.
Great question! Why should you create a Google+ business profile? Well, it is owned and operated by Google of course. And as a generalization, like YouTube and Google Places for Business, Google+ profiles do have some perks in getting ranked/indexed by Google. You increase the odds of getting highly targeted visitors from Google’s organic search results if you have a Google Plus account.
Similar to Facebook’s “like”, Google has “+1” votes. The more +1’s your pages and posts the better. Those social signal votes, let Google know that what you’re sharing is being read and shared. Google+ profiles and pages can have a significant impact on search rankings.
I’ve got a couple of tips that will show you some ways you can use Google plus for business. The added benefits of increasing the authority and influence of your company, your brand and boost your search rankings.
The About section of your Google+ profile gives you a great opportunity to write about your business. You can write what your business is about, the kinds of products and services you offer. This introduction content will also end up being used by Google as your page’s meta description when it shows up in the search results.
*Pro tip – You can create links within that introduction content that links back to different pages of your site. A couple of smartly used anchor text keywords would be nice, but definitely no keyword stuffing.
If you have any other social media profiles, from Facebook, to Instagram and Pinterest, you MUST add them to the links section of your Google+ profile as well. What better way to get a little more link juice and authority from Google than to have your social profiles included on their page for your business?
You can check out my Google+ profile to see an example.
You can find people to add to your circles pretty easily based on your interest with Google’s search feature. Like Twitter, the odds are in your favor that if you add them to your Google+ circle, they will follow your account back. Doing so can increase your odds of exposure when you start sharing your content with the world!
Your content and others’ content that you find of value. Every article that you share, creates a link back to your site. And with it being Google, you sharing on their social network gets your content indexed almost immediately. Share information, whether it’s an infographic, video, or even something funny, sharing is caring for your Google+ network.
You’re sharing content your own content, re-sharing quality content to your community and that’s great. Take it to the next level, by commenting on what other people are sharing. +1 their content, leave a quality comment. Be involved. That added exposure will naturally draw people to add you to their circles and increase the chances of your content being shared with their circle of influence.
Encourage your employees or coworkers create their own Google+ profiles if they don’t already have a profile. They can help you in just a couple minutes a day, post links to your websites on their Google+ profiles, they can share the posts from your page and even +1 posts. It’s an easy, yet powerful way to quickly and legitimately gain social signals for a new page.
Google+ isn’t going anywhere. I have a feeling its influence will continue to grow in the social media marketing arena over the next couple of years. From the community itself, to the ability to write keyword rich content that links back to your sites, there are definitely some search and social advantages to being active on Google+ for your business.
Every company has a personality and a story to tell. When you reveal your unique story, you help establish credibility and foster a personal connection with your Pinterest followers. A good place to start is to look into your company’s history. General Electric has done a great job of this on its “The Archives” Pinterest board. Here, GE pins images of past ad campaigns and products. If you share your company’s story with your audience, you:
However, the story doesn’t have to be limited to the past. Taco Bell Careers pins current images of employees working in the corporate offices and in stores on their Pinterest “The Taco Bell Community” board. Doing this will give a behind-the-scenes look and help to portray the company as fun and friendly.
Featured on this board are images of a jalapeno-eating contest, company award ceremonies and other fun events. Even if your business isn’t as large as Taco Bell, you can pin images of:
Another way to tell your story is to share the causes that matter to you. Many people appreciate doing business with and can relate to a company that gives back to the community. Mr. Rooter has a Pinterest board to showcase the non-profit foundations they partner with and support. They also highlight what their franchisees are doing on a local level to show that the giving goes beyond the corporate office. These pins display the many ways Mr. Rooter gives back to the community. While sharing your story, it’s important to remember that your company is more than just a logo. Many businesses on Pinterest use recognizable logos for their profile images, but to build a personal connection, pin a photo or video of yourself. For example, Bed Bath & Beyond created a board dedicated to their social media community managers. The only pin on this board is a video of the community managers introducing themselves and explaining what followers can expect to find on the Bed Bath & Beyond Pinterest account. Followers now have a sense of who the people are behind the Pinterest account. Instead of users leaving comments for a large company, they can now communicate with the actual people who represent the company. This simple video makes a large company feel very approachable.
Long ago, before video game consoles became as common as toasters, kids would have to venture out to arcades to play video games. One thing all of the gaming machines had in common was a screen that would show the initials of the top-ranking players. Having your initials listed as a top-ranking player meant that you were pretty darn cool. It took time, skill and money to achieve that status and the initials were the video game makers’ way of rewarding you. As a marketer, you can now use Pinterest to recognize and honor your clients or customers. For example, UGallery is an online art gallery that features upcoming artists. Each Monday, it features a guest pinner to pin to the UGALLERY: Be Art Guest board. UGallery includes the weekly guest pinner’s name and website URL in the description of the board. The guest pinner is featured on the UGallery blog and on the Pinterest board along with their pins. The guest pinners bestowed with this honor are likely to become loyal customers of UGallery and share the good news with their friends.
Lowe’s, an international home improvement retailer, is a good example of a company that uses its Pinterest account to provide value. Lowe’s Pinterest account provides value to followers beyond links to products. The boards Lowe’s has created not only feature products and projects from their website, they also have many pins that link to other websites and blogs for inspiration and instruction. When Lowe’s customers are looking for help with their next project, they can visit the Pinterest account to seek guidance.
Repinning is encouraged on Pinterest. When repinning something that you think would provide value to your Pinterest followers, click on the pin to verify that it leads back to the original source. Remember, the links attached to pins can be changed or broken. Before repinning to your account, verify the origin of the pin by clicking on it and only repin if it goes to the original source of the image. Pinning images with bad or broken links provides little to no value. Pinterest is a great social media platform to help build connections, trust and loyalty in a very visual way. Use these tips to leverage this social media platform to build the trust and loyalty of your audience. What do you think? How will you use Pinterest to build a connection with your clients or customers? It would be great to hear your ideas. Go ahead and share them in the comments below!