How to Use Google+ as a Marketing Tool - dummies

By Shiv Singh, Stephanie Diamond

Everything social marketers do online must be strategic, including using Google+. If you don’t map out a plan and follow a strategy, your presence on Google+ (and other social networks) is going to be a confusing mishmash rather than a series of well-thought-out, discussion-worthy posts.

The outcome of everything you post should benefit your community and your brand. You want followers to become more likely to share your content or even add their two cents.

Remember these strategies when sharing on any social media network:

  • Mix it up. Use a variety of content so your community doesn’t get bored. Ask questions, tell jokes, create short stories, or share photos and videos. People enjoy seeing beyond the same old, same old, so don’t be afraid of originality.

  • Provoke intelligent discussion. Although it’s definitely important to keep your tone light, you also shouldn’t be afraid of providing more thought-provoking questions or topics. Give your community a chance to weigh in. Ask open-ended questions, or encourage opinions. Make it clear that your followers’ voices matter.

  • Establish a routine. It’s important to post as much as possible, but if you can’t multiple times every day, at least keep a consistent schedule. If you find that your Mondays and Wednesdays are the busiest days of your week, consider setting a schedule that runs Tuesday and Thursday. But make sure you stick with it! The more they check back to see what you’re up to, the better.

  • Participate often. Community isn’t a one-way street. You also have to get out among the people. Visit the people in your community and comment on their posts and updates. Not only will others view you as accessible, but it may encourage others who don’t already follow you to add you.

  • Avoid hard selling. Of course you want to drive sales, but if everything you post is perceived as a pressure tactic, your community will tire of it and no longer follow you.

  • Determine who will be posting and when. If more than one person is running your account, coordinate efforts so they don’t post the same things at the same time. Set up a schedule or follow an editorial calendar.

  • Use Search Engine Optimization (SEO). A must when it comes to online content. People will have trouble finding your content if the search engines bury it in their search results pages because you didn’t use enough or the correct keywords in your content.

        Your public Google+ posts have the ability to catch the attention of the search engines, most importantly Google, the top search engine in the world. To do so, make sure all content is optimized for search. Use search terms in your posts and when labeling your photographs or videos