As marketers and business owners are getting more comfortable using Google+ and integrating it into their overall social media strategy, it's time to start considering some of the finer points of managing a Google+ business page. As more and more examples of excellent Google+ business pages and creative use of the network's unique features arise, more instances of huge Google+ misses are also becoming apparent. If you're using Google+ business pages or thinking about setting up a page soon, consider these 7 mistakes many people are making but are luckily incredibly easy to fix!
7 Silly Google+ Page Mistakes to Avoid
1.) Not posting consistently. Many marketers rushed to set up Google+ business pages for their company, but as marketers tend to do, they got busy. Many posted a few times in the first week, and then went silent. Maybe they came back and posted two or three times in a day, and then went silent for another week or two. This publishing inconsistency throws followers for a loop and prevents you from building momentum. Short bursts of publishing quickly loses steam. Google+ business pages are still young; if you're going to make an attempt to leverage it for marketing, give it more time and dedicate yourself to regularly publishing fresh content.
2.) Poor use of photos. Google+ business pages are a phenomenal platform for sharing photos, and there are a few best practices for leveraging your photo sharing there. First, provide a mix of text and photo updates; only posting text doesn't leverage the awesome Google+ photo display capabilities that improve the visitor's experience. Second, be sure you've uploaded a profile picture that relates to your company, otherwise visitors won't be sure they've reached the right Google+ business page. Third, don't post boring pictures! You know who is doing this? Believe it or not, Google+.
Instead of pictures of the page moderators, fun cartoons, or snapshots into Google HQ, we see brand icons that provide little value and no entertainment.
3.) Not applying for Direct Connect. If you don't register for Direct Connect, you won't be eligible to get found in SERPs and added to searchers' Circles simply by querying +YourName, nor will your Google+ business page posts appear in search engine results. This will impede not just the growth of your social media followers, but your SEO, too.
4.) Not using recommended links. Recommended links can be found on the 'About' section of a Google+ business page, and it allows you to drive traffic to your website and generate leads from landing pages. Google+ business pages also provide a field for your website URL. Not using these fields is a missed opportunity for your business, plain and simple.
5.) Vague personal taglines. The personal tagline should succinctly and clearly describe who you are. This is particularly important to help followers avoid confusion if you are a popular brand or a company with a popular name that many other businesses may have. For an example, let's take a look at the first result returned when performing a search for Facebook on Google+.
Look at that page! Their follower number is in the high thousands, they're posting really interesting content every day, engagement is high, and their photos are very high quality. This looks like Facebook's Google+ business page. But wait...check out that tagline: "facebook community on google+." Is this the official Facebook page? Frankly, it's pretty unclear. The page is maintained so well that it certainly could be, but the tagline seems to indicate otherwise. Don't put your followers through this confusion; make it blatantly obvious in the tagline.
6.) Not verifying your page with Google+. Verifying your page with Google+ helps establish a connection between your Google+ page and your website, mitigating the possibility that someone will make a copycat page around your brand name. It also gives you preference in search results on Google and Google+ if you are approved for Direct Connect. If you haven't verified your page yet, Virante has written a detailed blog post on how to go through the verification process.
7.) Not leveraging Circles to segment your followers. Circles is one of the features unique to Google+ business pages that made lots of people want to jump on the bandwagon. Instead of talking to your entire follower base, you can put people into Circles that let you target communications better. Time magazine is an example of a business that is segmenting Google+ circles well, creating topic Circles so readers only hear about the content that interests them. Circles are also an excellent solution for international businesses or businesses with an international base that frequently communicate with customers in multiple languages.
Have you noticed any other mistakes that Google+ business pages are making? Share your tips with readers!
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