How to Get Your Company’s Google+ Fans Involved
Google+ offers many ways that you can get your fans involved. Don’t automatically assume you are limited because you’re accessing the digital world. Here are a couple of ways companies have gotten their fans more involved with their product.
Separate fans into audiences (+Intel)
Intel engages its fans superbly by separating fans into different audiences and then catering its messages to those audiences. The brand does so by making the individual images across the top of its profile a way for users to “vote” on topics that they might be interested in.
Each image at the top is an animated GIF — currently, the topics are Technology Enthusiasts, Trends, IT Experts, Newsroom, and Software Developers. Each animated GIF flips around to show a circle that prompts the user, “+1 to join”.
When fans of the Intel Google+ Page circle the page and click the image, they have the option to +1 the image. When a user chooses and +1’s an image, Intel adds him or her to the circle requested. From that point on, the user will get targeted messages about the topics that he or she is interested in.
The idea is to ensure that the company’s messages are always connecting with the chosen interests of each member of the audience. Intel’s approach also does a couple of other things equally well:
Intel uses images to attract user attention. Intel’s Google+ Page shows an image attached to almost every post. Images drive more attention to posts, and bring more comments, shares, and +1s in almost all cases. (As always, be sure to test this principle to see how well it fits your own case.)
Intel utilizes popular hashtags to connect with trends. Recently trending hashtags that Intel is using to advantage include #ThrowbackThursday, which prompts users to share something from their own past experiences. #London2012 encourages them to talk about their involvement in the Olympics. By keeping a savvy eye on trends, Intel is participating as a member of the larger Google+ community.
Intel focuses on people and highlights people who use its products. Almost every post on Intel’s Google+ Page is about people in some way. There are posts about science-fair winners, posts about the people who make Intel computer chips, and pictures of actual chipmakers. The whole page feels very personal and makes people want to comment on the posts and converse with the Intel people.
Add +Intel to your circles.
Allow people to taste your brand (+Cadbury UK)
Cadbury UK — you know, the delicious, fun, oh-so-fattening-for-me chocolate-maker known here in the United States for crème eggs — is also one of the most popular Google+ Pages at the moment. With over two million people following Cadbury (and that number’s growing), the company must be doing something right.
The secret is that Cadbury UK uses Google+ features that are among the best strengths of Google+. Unwrap these tasty morsels:
The brand embraces animated GIFs. Cadbury uses animated GIFs to get the brand’s point across. This is a Google+ feature that’s uniquely effective in comparison to other social networks. You should consider utilizing — but not overutilizing — animated GIFs if they can help bring attention to your posts and your images are relevant to what you’re talking about.
Each post has pictures. It’s clear that images in posts show results and bring attention to each post.
Cadbury people ask questions and start conversations. Every post you make is a conversation. Your post should have a question or some sort of phrase in it intended to start a conversation. The more people who comment, the more people will discover your content. This means more +1s and shares. The more +1s and shares you get, the better your posts will show up in Google search results.
Cadbury posts are often about their fans. Did you know that Google+ is about people? The more you post about the people passionate about your brand, the better you’ll perform. Cadbury UK does this well, highlighting fans who are eating its chocolate.
The brand embraces Hangouts. For the launch of one of its products, Cadbury UK did a Google+ Hangout to have select customers try out the new product in a “chocolate tasting,” an event that the company organized. Each participant in the Hangout was sent the new chocolate; then, one by one, the lucky fans tasted the product, sharing their experiences with viewers.
Be sure to add +Cadbury UK to your circles.