Google+ How to Integrate into your Social Media Tool Belt Presented by: Desmond Johnson, SMM/SEO Analyst
What is Google’s new Social Media Platform Currently Invite Only No Business Profile option…..yet Create a individual account first to become familiar with Google’s new features
Setup of Google Profile Go to www.google.com Click on the top right corner of page on “Sign In” Already have a Google Account? Log in with your email and Password. (Gmail, Profiles, Youtube, Analytics, Adwords, Gdocs, Maps) Don’t have a Google Account? Create one now. You can’t use Google+ currently without a Gmail account (Don’t worry, It’s free)
Create an Account You will need: Current Email Address Currently, you have to have a Gmail account through Google, in order to have a Google+ account Valid Birthday Password you select at creation After completion of Account setup you will now have the ability to set up a “Profile” on Google that will group all of your Google Products together.
Set up Google Profile Go to profiles.google.comand click the blue “create my profile” button. Log in with the Email and Password you just created. Google Profiles allows you to simply point at a field and click to edit information. This includes your profile picture, Intro, Occupation, Education and more. You decide how much to display. If you have not received an invitation from someone already on Google+ you will create a “Profile” until someone invites you. If someone invites you and you already have a Google Profile, it will be migrated to Google+ automatically.
Set Up Google Profile Little known fact: You can select to have multiple emails attached to your Google Profile. This can be used to recover passwords, sign into your account and more. If one of your email addresses is a Gmail account, Google will automatically make that email the one that shows as your primary. DO NOT setup your profile under your business name! Google is not allowing them at this time, and will eventually find your account and shut it down. Don’t take the risk of being “slapped on the wrist”.
Now What? After getting your profile setup, now its time to play with the features. Here are the features that separate Google+ from other social media sites
CIRCLES In your everyday life, you have different “levels” of association. Friends Family Co-workers School It can be an endless variation of people….
CIRCLES On Facebook, most people have their accounts setup where everyone you are “friends” with. This could be an issue if you want to target a message to a specific audience. Some of your friends may not want to be bombarded with specials. Some of your business acquaintances may not need to know what your weekend plans are.
CIRCLES On Twitter, you have “followers” that can see your timeline even if you are not following them. Twitter can penalize you for not having a equal follow ration (ex: following 500 people, only 5 people follow you). Google+ is a combination of the two (Facebook, Twitter).
CIRCLES Google+ eliminates this issue with the creation on “Circles”. You can choose who can see your message by putting people into specific circles you label.
CIRCLES How do you create circles? Click on the “circles” icon on the top band of your Google+ home profile page. Then drag a person’s square to a specific circle. Next time you post, you can select which circles to send the message out to.
CIRCLES No more “Friend Requests”! No more having to accept or deny a person. A person can choose to have you in a circle and you don’t have to put them in one of yours. Relationships change over time. With Google+, now you can adjust your social friendships as well. When someone “adds” you, they only see your public posts. If you also add them to a circle, and share with that circle, they will see those posts as well.
CIRCLES Options for sharing: Everyone “Your Circles” All of the circles you have currently created Multiple Circles: “family” “friends” Specific People: “John Doe”
SPARKS Sparks is way to search for items on the web that “spark” your interest. From the Google+ home page, click on Sparks at the left under your circles in your stream. You can choose from the categories that Google has already setup, or type in a keyword into the search box at the top and hit enter.
SPARKS It presents you with a list of stories that the keyword will bring up. If you like the type of stories that are coming up, click “Add Interest” button underneath the search box. Repeat this until you have a nice list of “Sparks” you find interesting.
How to Share Click on text box at the top of your profile or click the gray “share” box in the top right corner of your Google band of products and features. Type your message. Pick the circles you would like to share with. Click share. You’re done. No “Wall Posting” here—with the easy to use format, its no longer necessary.
Read Streams Posts from people you are sharing with are sent to your stream and divided based on the circles they are in. On the left hand side of your profile, you can select specific circles to view posts from people within that circle.
HANGOUTS Ever have a need to speak to multiple people within the company at one time? Google+ Hangouts feature allows you to web chat in groups up to 10 people at a time. Also allows attendees to simultaneously watch video’s on YouTube while chatting.
HANGOUTS On the right hand side of the profile page, click on the green button “Start a hangout” If you haven't downloaded the Google voice plugin you will be prompted to here If you have downloaded the plugin, the screen should show you in a small screen Add the friends or circle you want to “hangout” with Click “Hangout” to enter
HANGOUTS At bottom of Hangout screen, you can invite, chat, go to YouTube, adjust microphone settings and more! You don’t have to have a camera to participate in Google Hangouts…if you don’t have one you can use just voice. If you invite people to join a Hangout, a post will appear in their stream telling tem that there’s a hangout going on. If 25 or fewer people are invited, they will receive a notification that they have been invited to join. Since the Hangout you’re in is visible by the circles of the other participants, people you don’t know may learn that you’re hanging out.
Mobile Used with Android equipped phones iPhone app under development. Web app available at google.com/+ Check streams, contact friends, upload photos, Huddle (group mobile messaging)
Major differences between Google+ and the competition
Privacy Google+ has easier privacy settings even though Google+ profiles cannot be set to “private” Easy to control which users can see each of your updates
Better Posts More insightful posts are showing up on Google+ This may be due to Google+ higher character limit. The user is able to post multiple paragraphs as opposed to 140 characters on Twitter
No Farmville Posts! Although Google has recently added games to its lineup, its less of an annoyance due to relegating gaming updates to a dedicated tab. Keeps your stream free from noisy distractions.
Photos Full Screen Photo galleries. Already boasts highly active community with some of the web’s best photographers.
Customer Service Google+ creators are active on the site and actually respond to questions and criticisms.
Google Product Integration Works in tandem with other Google Products including: Gmail Calendar Gdocuments Photos Reader Google search
+1 Button You’ve probably noticed recently when you do a Google Search, a small box with a +1 inside appears at the end of the post. What’s that?
+1 Button Modeled after Facebook’s “Like” button. Promotes user engagement and generates audience data for website publishers. Currently clicked over 4 Billion times a day. Up from 2.3 Billion in July 2011. Google+ users can now click on +1 buttons and share web page content directly with their Google+ Circles.
+1 Button When used with Google+ the +1 button will pull up: A snippet of the site A link to the site Image Description Gets shared among user’s chosen friends on Google + (new!) Added commentary about post from user. More graphically rich experience for users, which should generate better click-through rates for publishers.
+1 Button…how does this work? When you do a search on Google’s search engine, at the end of your search result, a +1 box appears. (Only appears on Google’s SE, Bing uses Facebook “like” button in a similar manner) If a person likes the search result, they can click the +1 box to “recommend” the page to friends. Friends receive personal recommendations when they search! +1 Box turns from white to blue. Anyone logged into their Google profile that has you in a circle on Google+ will receive the recommendation from you if they do a similar search! The more recommendations a site has, the higher it will rank in Google’s search. While this is not the main factor towards page rank, it has become one of the critical factors for rank. The more people talking about your website, the higher it should rank!
Did you know? When you click the +1 button on a site, any friends in your Gmail account will be sent a notification recommending your site and service to them. This will also extend to Facebook and Twitter as Google+ will invite them to join. Quick and free advertising for your web site to hundreds of people instantly.
Business Pages Attributes Businesses will be able to “verify” business ownership so that fans can be sure that they are really interacting with the original business. You will be able to add more than one location of business by integrating your Google Maps and Places profiles. You can use Google offers to create special offers for their fans and customers. Use Sparks to keep up to date in terms of news relating to the brand. Ability to integrate Google Analytics and Google AdWords.
Rumored Google+ Business Page Features Google Meeting:A Business “Hangout” for meetings. Allows a company to organize, record and archive phone, text and video conferences. Up to 10 people. Attendees in Meeting can be invited via Google Calendar, eMail and Google Chat. Google ScreenCast: Ability to record the computer screen output and to share it with others so that participants in meeting can show or demonstrate things on their computer. Google Whiteboard: Virtual “whiteboard”, content can be shared with others via Google + or email. Google Docs makes it easy to present, create and share documents with the click of a button!
Suggestions Create a personal Google profile. Once Business profiles are made available, you will have an understanding of how to navigate more quickly. Plus there are a lot of cool tools to use for internet surfing. Don’t abandon your other tools! Continue to use Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, etc. These are invaluable tools to help you get the word out about your business….if used properly. When all are used together you can create a strong Social Media presence. Be sure to add the +1 button to your website, as well as all of your social media buttons.
Food for Thought Over 60% of social media users claim that they are more likely to recommend a product or service that they have “liked” or “+1” online to a friend. Over 60% of social media users also claim that they are more likely to buy a product or service if it was recommended to them through a friend on a social media site.
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