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Why You Shouldn’t Ignore Google+


Good news: Google is everywhere and offers a myriad of opportunities for you and your business to be found.  Bad news: If you are not effectively utilizing Google you are missing the chance to connect with your target audience and customers.  So let’s take a look at the basic social networking components you can utilize in the Googlesphere for optimal social media marketing.

Google+ is Google’s native social network.  Like Twitter and Facebook, you establish a profile, you can post updates and you connect with people.   There are some differences, however.  With Google, instead of “liking” something, you “+1” it.  And instead of followers and friends, you have Google “circles” which is a great way to segment and target your Google connections.


A Google+ Profile page is for individuals and personalities.  As noted above, you can create circles of peers and they can add you to their circles.  You can also make your profile as public or private as you want with the control settings.


A Google+ Business Page is a must for your business if nothing else for its SEO (search engine optimization) benefits.  Taking ownership of your business page with Google allows you control over what others are seeing about you on Google and creates another opportunity to drive people to your website.  So even if you don’t plan to actively utilize it in your social media marketing, at least take ownership of your Business page.

Another advantage of the Business page are you can assign other team members to help you manage your Business page and many third party social media apps (like Hootsuite) work with Google+ Pages for effective social media management, scheduling and analytics.

(*Note: Don’t be surprised to find you that you already have to Google+ account created that you didn’t even know about.  Google has a propensity to automatically create and attach Google+ accounts to their other Google products.  In other words, if you have created a Gmail email account or a YouTube (it’s owned by Google!) account, it is highly likely that there is a Google+ account waiting for you to put your name on it and own it.)


Google Local (formerly Google Places)
If you have a brick and mortar business or a physical retail store or office, it is imperative that you claim your Google Local spot.   Identifying your business with Google Local (formerly Google Places) gets your company literally on the map with Google Maps and Google Search.  It also allows you to have directions and reviews as well as photos and videos and other Google+ Page features.

If you haven’t created any Google Pages for your business yet, it’s best to start with Google Local (now found within the Google My Business Apps) to get your page verified by Google and then this will also become your Google Business Page for social networking.

If you have already created a Business Page, it will depend on what type of Business Page you created as to whether or not you can merge the two pages together.   Check with Google to find out more about merging.

All of this can seem overwhelming and you may feel it is easy just to skip this one out, but before you do, remember EVERYONE USES GOOGLE.   These robust (and FREE!) Google tools exist to help you grow your discover-ability and audience reach.  So dig in to Google+.  See what accounts may already be established.  At a minimum, get started with a personal Google+ profile and start growing your circles.

For more information about using Google+, here are some of my favorite resources:

Are you already on Google+?  What’s your favorite (or least favorite thing) about using it?  Please share in the comments.