As our clients work with us on budgeting and creating new strategies, we have seen an increased interest in Google Plus participation. Many CMOs are beginning to see the importance of Google Plus but are daunted by having their team manage yet another social media account. For the past few years, the idea of Google Plus has been pushed to the wayside for more familiar social avenues such as Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest, but the time to engage is now.
Why Google Plus?
Google Plus is one of the fastest growing social media platforms across the Internet, growing at a rate of 44%. It has become the second largest social platform online and is expected to surpass Facebook for the top spot by 2016. Google Plus has 540 million active users each month and offers more benefits for businesses than any other social media platform currently available.
While the benefits of participating on Google Plus can be comparable to other popular sites like Facebook, here are eight extra incentives as to why should it be added to your business’s social strategy.
1. Improved SEO
Google Plus improves an organization’s SEO in two significant ways. Google’s social site has a feature called Circles, which allows users to place other members and business in their circles, categorizing them for search and posting. These circles help in search because if a user is a Google+ member and they search for a phrase, the answers to this search can be skewed because Google will prioritize the results based on the user’s and the users follower’s circles.
Google Plus also improves business SEO because it indexes business websites faster when a Google Plus business page is associated.
2. Increased Search Real Estate
When an organization has a Google Plus business page, it can increase brand awareness as well as search real estate. Through the use of the Google recommended rel=publisher code, branded search results will not only feature the website, but also a logo, secondary information, a link to the Google Plus page and a preview of the company’s most recent post.
3. Opportunity For Expert Authority
Through Google Plus’ Community features, businesses can set themselves apart as industry experts and build their authority. There are several types of communities throughout the platform on almost any subject and these online forums act as a way to ask questions, share insights and interact with customers in a non-promotional setting.
4. Enriched Visual Connections
Many businesses allocate some portion of their budget to YouTube (another social platform owned by Google that has recently integrated G+) videos, but Google Plus allows companies to take it one step further. Instead of a static video to assist customers, Google’s social platform allows customers to engage in one-on-one or group interactions through a live video stream. This can be done through Google Hangouts or Google’s newest product, Helpouts.
5. Builds Authorship for Brand Spokesmen
Thanks to Google’s authorship codes, authors and brand spokesmen can build creditability and a following through implementing rel=author. This code connects content written by a specific author to the author’s Google Plus page. It also increases click through in search because articles that connect to the author showcase a headshot of the author and more information such as other posts they’ve written.
6. Increases Storefront Awareness
If an organization has a storefront, owning a Google Plus Places or Local page can help build awareness for the business as well as where the store location is. This is very beneficial as more users are searching for store/office locations while on mobile devices.
7. Provides Posting Insights
While sites like Pinterest and Facebook can provide insights to how a company’s posts are doing, there is no social site that has Google Plus’ Ripple program. This insightful feature allows users to see the viral reach of a post, helping them tailor content in the future as well as make new connections that otherwise may have gone unseen.
8. Different Demographic Reach
While Facebook still dominates the social media market, making a move to Google Plus may open up new demographic reach opportunities. With several new users joining the site each day, looking to follow businesses and people that they don’t already follow on other social media platforms, it provides an excellent way to introduce your brand and products.
Your Social Strategy
So, as you are mapping out your social strategy, don’t forget to consider the many benefits that accompany the quickly up and coming Google Plus. You can follow us or ask us your questions about Google Plus strategies on our G+ page. Follow us to get the latest updates on web marketing strategies, AEM information, branding and website design trends, and more.