Google+ is Google’s much-aligned, nearly dead attempt at social media. Outside of photography and computer nerds, it’s not clear it has anyone really using it.
However, Google+ is still “Google’s baby,” and it ain’t dead yet! Google gives you some nifty benefits if you use Google+. In this video, for example, I will show you how using Google+ at a personal level can get your picture to show on Google results AND generate emails to your customers. Let’s get started!
Watch “Google+ SEO, Your Picture & Email: It Ain’t Dead (Yet)!” on YouTube!
Google+ has three interrelated functions, but you want to think clearly about each. This video is ONLY about the Google+ personal function, but Google+ has –
- Local Reviews. These are the reviews that you see on Google when you do a local search such as pizza or probate attorney. In general, the MORE reviews your business has on Google, the HIGHER you rank in the local “Snack Pack” and in the organic results. Todo: get more reviews from customers on Google.
- Google+ Business Pages. Outside of local, you can also have a Google+ business page. These are set up at Google Business, but outside of local they have little if any value at this point. I recommend you set one up, and then populate the content there the same as you do for Facebook, using Hootsuite or another posting program. Todo: set up a Google+ local (very important) or non-local (not very important) page for your business, and get customers to “follow” your business page.
- Google+ Personal. This is similar to Facebook in that I have a Google+ profile as a person and you “follow” me (“circle” me) as a person. (You can do that, here.) Then if you log in to Google+, you’ll see my posts in the news feed (in the same way as on Facebook). However, since few people really use Google+ this has only a limited benefit in this way. Todo: set up Google+ personal for your CEO / CFO / CMO / key people and get customers to “follow” them on Google+.
However, Google+ personal has two key benefits –
- Search Results. Someone who follows you as a person on Google+, when they are “logged in” to Google will see your posts in their search results, along with your picture. This enables you to influence what they see on Google search, and to continually remind them of your personal brand (or that of your CEO / key people at your company).
- Email Alerts. Google will generate email reminders of “Here’s what you missed” to people who follow you on Google+. In this way, you can leverage Google+ to generate a constant stream of email alerts to people who follow you, again staying “top of mind” with your customers.
Watch the video for examples of how this works in real time.
Using Google+ Personal
Here are your steps to leverage Google+ for SEO –
- Personal Account. Go to Google+ and set up a personal account. It can be connected to your Gmail account, or to any Google (email) that you wish. Populate your profile with information about yourself, and remember this is really for “business” purposes (unlike Facebook) and not for “personal” purposes. You’re positioning yourself (or your CEO / key person at your organization) as a “thought leader.” (You can view my profile on Google+, here, and click on the “about” button to see how I have populated it with a keyword-heavy description of myself as an expert in SEO and Social Media Marketing.)
- Post to Google+. Next, begin to populate your Google+ timeline with interesting posts that are RELEVANT to your keyword targets or themes. Don’t post about politics, puppies, or your favorite recipe for pumpkin pie. Instead, if you are a probate attorney, post about probate issues, your city, wills, trusts, estates, and other topics that reflect your KEYWORD WORKSHEET. Your goals is to “show up” when a potential customer searchers for something relevant to your business. (Important: Make sure when you post that you share it with the PUBLIC).
- Get Followers. (This is the hard part). Incentivize people to follow you. For example, you might give a away a free eBook if people follow you on Google+, or you can send email reminders to a link to your Google+ personal profile and ask people to follow you, reminding them that you will share timely, interesting information on the topics for which you want to be a “thought leader.”