Small Business Owners and Google Plus
It is a widely known fact that providing and creating a solid social media presence is essential to ensure success for a brand or company’s online marketing campaign. In the case of small and local businesses this is doubly true. This is because these companies are reliant on word of mouth in order to bolster their reputation and increase sales. Increasingly, social media is the modern word of mouth medium.
Businesses have been quick to harness the online marketing power presented by Twitter and Facebook with their colossal online audiences. However, businesses have been less forthcoming when it comes to embracing the latest social media contender, Google Plus. This blog explains everything which small business owners should know about Google Plus and how to implement it as part of their online marketing strategies.
Why should small businesses embrace Google Plus?
With hindsight it was only a matter of time before the search engine behemoth that is Google decided to get involved with social media. Google Plus is exactly the kind of social media platform which plays to Google’s strengths, a platform where users can easily create and share quality content and due to the way it has been set up, it presents businesses with a potent marketing tool.
Google Plus the Basics:
One of the greatest assets of Google Plus is that it comes integrated with a range of free tools. These tools include, Google Documents, Google Drive, Blogger, Gmail and Google Calendar. The correct utilisation of these tools enable businesses to organise and manage their Google Plus presence in conjunction with their business blog. In addition, Google Plus “Pages” can be created for both individuals and businesses, and can even be created for products.
The platform’s interface is both sleek and clean, it is easy for new users to use and can be easily customised. Users are able to create specific contact groups which are called “Circles”. Once a Circle has been created it can be utilised in a variety of ways, including the filtering of content. This is achieved by only sharing content with specific Circles which contain people to which it is likely to appeal.
Posts on Google Plus can be purely text based, equally users are able to add videos or photos making it as useful as rival platforms Twitter and Facebook.
Why small businesses need a Google Plus presence:
It is important that Google Plus is viewed as a separate entity, as opposed to another social media alternative to Facebook and Twitter. As a platform Google Plus has been designed to provide a powerful business tool which can help small or local businesses to grow and develop their online presence.
- Google Plus posts, from both Google Plus business pages and standard Google Plus profiles, tend to perform better in Google searches than content from either Twitter or Facebook.
- Users of Google Plus are granted access to a free video chat based application, Hangouts, which provides simple yet effective video communication abilities both internally with colleagues and externally with clients and customers.
- The Circle function is perfectly suited to perform a marketing role. Circles can be set up to cater to specific demographics within a business’s audience, making their targeted content marketing efforts more effective.
- The Google Plus Local feature enables the owners of small and local businesses to effectively oversee and manage their presence with online consumers.
- The +1 feature, which is comparable with Facebook’s “like” button, means that the platform’s users are easily able to recommend content which they find to be engaging or useful. Google Plus’s +1’s have the additional benefit that they also help to improve a particular post’s Google search ranking.
Google Plus is still in its early stages, despite this a number of small businesses are seeing dramatic increases in their online presence and reach due to the platform. The search engine has announced big plans for its social media platform, therefore it is better to get involved sooner rather than later.