This week Google rolled out the option to create a Google+ page for businesses! (Check out the E-Power Marketing Google+ page) Previously, personal profiles could be set up through this new social networking Website, but business profiles were promptly removed by the search giant. With the sanctioned ability to create a Google+ Business page, brands have a new way to connect with their socially savvy target audience.
Creating a professional presence on a social network is not a new idea. Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter all welcome businesses to their social landscape. Google+ is a relatively new social site when compared to the other social media services, but it has the potential to be a powerful one. As with any new service, understanding the vocabulary can be intimidating. Here, we've put together a list of new terms and definitions to help you figure out the new Google+ for your brand...
Stream: Like a Facebook Wall, Google+ pages include a stream of posts, created and published by the account holder. These posts can include text, links, photos and videos. These are the "status updates" of the Goole+ world.
Circles: Google+ allows brands and personal accounts to organize the people they follow and the people that follow them into circles. Much like Facebook's lists, these circles can be customized to fit your needs as a person or brand.
Photos: Like Facebook, Google+ allows brands to customize their account with a set of 5 photos at the top of the page. As an improvement to the Facebook pages, brands on Google+ can utilize the photos to create a banner, as the photos always remain in the same spot within the banner.
Profile: Google+ Profiles allow brands to let their followers know more about the company.
- Taglines appear at the top of the page and must be kept short in order to be read.
- Introductions are more in depth information about the brand. This can be utilized as the company description.
- Contact Info can and should be added so that followers can get in touch with your brand when looking for more information.
- Recommended Links allows brands to highlight the URLs they feel are most important. Don't forget to add your other social media profiles to this list!
Sparks: Google has provided a Google+ search engine, called Sparks. This feature allows you to search for topics and ideas you are interested in on Google+ only. As a brand, this allows you to discover industry resources, news and even competition on the social platform.
Hangouts: In an effort to make Google+ even more social, the hangouts feature was created. Real time video chat for up to 9 people at a time allows Hangout to be a solid feature of this social networking service. Brands can utilize this for conferences, team meetings and more.
Connect Badges: As with any social media marketing endeavor, publicizing your profile is important. Google makes it easy to publicize your Google+ page with easy to install buttons for your Website, email marketing, etc. There are 6 defaults buttons available, and you do have the option to customize them for your brand.
Direct Connect: Google+ has created the Direct Connect feature, allowing users to find a Google+ business page when using Google Search. Just type in +youtube, and instead of seeing all the results on a Search Engine Results Page, you'll be taken immediately to the Google+ profile for YouTube. Please note, this feature is not available to all brands at this time.
+1 Buttons: An interesting feature of Google+ is the +1 button. When a Google+ member finds and clicks the +1 button on the Web, they are giving it their public endorsement. The +1 button also makes it easier to share the news/information via your personal Google+ stream. This adds a personalization to search, in the same way that Bing has implemented the Facebook "likes" in their search results.
Google+ offers brands another way to connect with fans online. As new features roll out, this social media platform holds promise for brands online. Created by one of the most influential search engines in the world, Google+ promises to be an interesting topic. For more information on Google+ or for help setting up your optimized profile, please contact the Social Media Team at E-Power Marketing today!