Google launched Google+ Pages this week, and like Google+ itself, businesses are looking for ways to best utilize them to help their brands.
What is the best business benefit of Google+ Pages? Share your thoughts here.
Google’s Christian Oestlien presented at ad:tech New York this week talking about some marketing issues Google is hoping to solve with Google+. These are:
1. Fragmented marketing
2. Recommendations that lack staying power
3. Comments, not conversations
4. Impersonal messages
5. Limited insights
The company considers Pages to be a place that Google has never had before, where you can connect with all of our customers and directly communicate with them. They are designed to foster customer recommendations that have staying power, since all of your +1’s can be tied together, across your site, your Page, your search results, and your search ads.
Circles, he said, provide brands with a way to deliver the right messages to thre right people, as opposed to the same message to everybody. In terms of insights, he referred to the recently launched Ripples feature, which lets you track the social life of a post.
Now on to the tips. Here’s a bonus tip: You can search #pagetips on Google+ and get even more tips from people.
Google has its own “Google+ Your Business” page, which I’d recommend adding to your circles. Google’s Kristoffer Sorensen shares the following tips in a post on that:
1. Engage, engage, engage
“Google+ is about engaging with friends, family, colleagues, people who share your interests, and now customers, clients, and companies,” he says. “This is a great opportunity for you to share with your clients news, product launches, campaigns, and promotions. It’s also an awesome way for you to talk to your fans, learn about them and get feedback from them. In short, it’s a great opportunity for you to engage.”
He says to be responsive, don’t be afraid of negative comments, and post relevant, interesting content, but don’t spam your followers.
2. Hangouts are awesome!
“As a brand and a business you should be thinking about how hangouts can add value to the way you communicate with your followers. You should also be thinking about who should be hosting them on your end – it’s a great opportunity for you to show the human face of your brand/company. Host them from your page by clicking the “Start a hangout” button on the right side of your home page.”
He suggests using Hangouts for product demos, customer service office hours, discussions with people in the company, sharing financial results, Q&A for product/service feedback, or tutorials/classes.
3. Manage your Circles
“Managed right, circles can be a great tool for ensuring that you get the right message to the right follower,” says Sorensen. “For example, a clothes brand might want to send one message to their fans interested in soccer and another to their fans interesting in running. It allows you as a brand to tailor your message and increase relevance in your messaging.”
He notes that Google is working on ways for users to manage Circles better, but in the meantime, he sugggests creating a post that you reshare regularly. “Have it say something like ‘we want to make sure we get the right messages to our fans, so +1 the comments below to let us know what circles you want to be part of,” he says. “Comment on your own post with a comment for each potential circle (for instance, football, soccer, running, tennis, dodgeball, and barrel rolling). People can then indicate what circle they want to be in by +1’ing that comment – you can follow up and add people to circles based on their choice”
The regular Google+ Page offers “5 cool tips you should know about Google+ Pages”. These include:
4.You can +1 a Page to show support or add them to your Circles.
5. No Google+ Page can follow you until you follow them.
6. Google+ Pages can’t even mention you unless you’re connected. “No +mention spam.”
7. Google+ Pages automatically unfollow you if you unfollow them.
8. You can find Google+ pages in Google Search
You can actually do this by just typing “+” and the Page’s name, so this should be a good way for users to easily find brand page. This is what Google calls Direct Connect:
9. Pay attention and responded accordingly.
Thomas Morffew of Ren Media says, “This is how you do Google Plus,” and shares the following screen cap:
10. Connect your Google+ Page to your AdWords campaigns.
Learn more about how to do this here.
Have more tips for effective use of Google+? Share them in the comments.