Our guide to Google+

Google+ is now the fourth largest social network on the web and the second largest social network in terms of active users, placing Google’s social offering just ahead of Twitter. And yet, Google+ is yet to gain the credit it deserves…

Fully integrated with a number of other Google services, Google+ offers both easy accessibility and evidence that a solid Google+ campaign can have a profound influence on search rankings. It’s currently experiencing incredibly fast growth; a social sharing report from BrightEdge showed that consumer Google+ adoption increased by 1400% in January alone.

The platform also offers a great alternative to Facebook marketing. It’s becoming increasingly difficult to get unpaid Facebook content seen, with little information from the network about how to best optimise site performance, making Google+ with its content-centric, user-friendly design a breath of fresh air.

With limited targeting options for sponsored posts on Facebook, Google+’s integrated AdWords advertising model allows more targeted advertising options that have the potential to be far more profitable.

The beauty of Google+ is its clean, user-friendly design that allows it to place a greater focus on content itself. Think of Google+ as the middle-ground between Facebook and Twitter – the platform allows for greater visibility than Facebook, yet still champions visual content. It also utilises hash tags to increase engagement and as there are no limitations on characters, you can use as many as you like. With the network’s more closely involved user base, higher engagement leads to much higher click-through rates making Google+ a great addition to your content marketing strategy.

If you post good, high quality, content, the rest will follow. Google+ operates on different measurement metrics to Facebook and Twitter, instead following Google’s PageRank system. Posts about your industry or backlinks to your own original content will see them indexed by Google.

In addition to more targeted advertising, ‘Circles’ allow you to create tailored communities. These can be publicly visible, or alternatively you can create private circles that share resources with affiliates, partners or those within your organisation; the important thing to remember is that everything is customisable. Similarly, ‘Hangouts’, which are unique to Google+, can also be a great way to breed exclusivity; use it for business or pleasure, whether it’s chatting to friends or colleagues. Not only does this create a more natural, human, approach to interaction, but also if linked to YouTube this will be indexed by Google.

The world of content marketing is constantly changing. If you want to keep ahead of the curve, get started on Google+ today.

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