Google+ almost gives you a sense of many different Social Media platforms and their features in one place. Google+ is different from Facebook: organizing your friends, family, acquaintances and colleagues into different Circles, and meeting them in Hangouts. There are hundreds of companies jumping in on the social media band wagon that really just don’t get it and they are usually trying too hard. SocialMediaExaminer explains further.
Are you looking for better engagement on Google+?
Google+ has a unique culture and set of capabilities that set it apart from other social networks.
Here are four tips that have helped me build engagement and expand business networking.
#1: Follow Active People Relevant to Your Business
Wherever you invest time online, have a target audience or connection with people who could be interested in your product or service, which will eventually lead to sales.
Now, finding these people can be a bit of a challenge, but search makes your job a lot easier.
The search on Google+ has multiple options to choose from.
When you type a keyword in the search box at the top of the site, you’re first presented with a real-time updating stream. Looking right below the search box, you’ll see your keyword with a dropdown box next to it.
To find people based around that topic, simply select “People or Pages,” and the results will be all people or pages that have the keyword in their profile.
Finding relevant people is just a few clicks away.
Alternatively, if you want to see posts based around that keyword, select “Google+ posts.” And if the stream moves too fast, you can always press the Pause button right above the very top post.
RealEstate.com is one business that is applying this first principle. They make sure to connect with other realtors and real estate offices.
RealEstate.com is following people relevant to their business.
Tip: Spend the time to find the right people with whom to build a social network on Google+. These people should be active on Google+ and should potentially be interested in what you have to share there.
#2: Take Time to Comment
To build an active and engaged audience, it takes more than just following the right people. You also have to get into the trenches and interact with those people.
Once you’ve found relevant and active people to add to your circles, participate in conversations with them for a few minutes here and there.
Dogfish Head Brewery does a good job of jumping into the comments and interacting with fans.
Tip: Commenting and building an active social network is a great strategy, considering the added search and SEO benefits. With the introduction of Search Plus Your World, Google+ results are integrated into search. People who are connected with you can potentially see your content on Google, depending on what they’re looking for.
#3: Participate in Hangouts
Hangouts are a great way to meet new and exciting people. Video is the next closest thing to meeting a person in real life and allows you to better connect with someone.
Dell is fairly active with Hangouts and does a Hangout On Air (a live-streaming Hangout) about twice a month or so.
Dell preparing for an upcoming Hangout On Air and giving users the chance to win a new laptop.
Instead of just sending out a text update or sharing press releases about a new product, Dell engages with their audience through video.
Tip: This fosters relationships because now their business has a face and builds a more visual experience, something that people will remember better.
Whether you’re an introvert or extrovert, give Hangouts a chance. If you don’t want to start your own in the beginning, simply keep an eye out for when someone you follow starts one and join in. This will give you a good feeling for how everything works, being able to experience it firsthand.
#4: Publish High-Quality Content
Take the time not only to create but also share great quality content. As Scott Stratten says, “People share awesome.” The same goes for interacting with that content as well, whether it’s +1s, comments or reshares.
In order to get value, whether it’s +1s, comments, shares and beyond, you must firstgive out value. What’s great about Google+ is that you can write far more than 140 characters and use bold or italic text, which helps bring attention to your content.
Ford getting creative with their content.
Going back to following active and engaging people, you should find plenty of great content to share from other people. Sharing other people’s content shows that you appreciate it.
Also, adding your own comments as you share their content gives those who follow you the opportunity to engage with you and take the conversation further.
Jamie Furlong sharing practical how-to information and including images.
Tip: Notice the topics and types of content your audience likes to interact with. Figure out what they value most and continue with the same high-quality content.
In a way, Google+ isn’t much different from other social networks when it comes to building engagement. Hopefully you can take these tips, apply them and start experiencing how great the platform can be.
What do you think? What’s your experience with engagement on the social network? Please share in the comments box below.
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