Google Plus is one of the most talked about recent developments in the social media arena. With its launch of Google Plus Business Pages a few months back, organizations are flocking to the platform, eager for a new internet marketing solution to promote and boost their business.
We have already discussed how a Google Plus page is an important way to boost your search efforts (in case you missed the post, check out Google+ Business Pages and Search Marketing).
But SEM is not the only benefit that Google Plus has to offer. As with other social media channels, it’s a boon for your content marketing efforts.
Sharing and digesting content on Google Plus is similar in many ways to Facebook –a stream that brings up what individuals in your circles have shared (like the Facebook timeline), the ability to give the content a +1 (the Google equivalent of the like button) and a comments area. However, Google Plus also offers some unique features that can help your business with its content marketing efforts.
One unique aspect of Google Plus is how you organize your followers in circles – putting your contacts into specific groups. For example, you can have circles for your partners, your industry connections, your affiliates, your customers etc… Circles are completely customizable, so you can organize them any way you wish.
This segmentation is very significant for content marketing. Instead of simply sharing your content across the board publicly, or being limited to segmentation by language or country as you are with Facebook, you can choose to share your content only to specific circles. This makes it very easy to target users with highly relevant messages.
The Ripples feature allows you to get very specific data about how a post spreads and is shared. This can be accessed from any public post by clicking the small downward pointing arrow to the right of the post and then selecting “View Ripples”. You can see who has shared your content, who the top influencers are, and other useful statistics. Ripples can help to guide your content marketing, giving your business insight into what works and what doesn’t.
Hangouts are live video chats where up to 10 people can participate, offering another way to provide educational content to your target audience. With Google Plus, your business can set up a hangout around a particular topic, such as a Q&A session or specific training, for example. Even though only 10 users can actively participate, as long as the hangout is set to public, anyone can view it. If you record the session, you can share it and use it for your other internet marketing channels.
With a little planning and creativity, Google Plus is a great new online marketing tool that can help your business spread its content in unique and interesting ways.