Google Plus, aka Google+, is the search titan’s most recent foray into the world of social media after the demise of its much hyped predecessor Google Buzz. Since its debut in mid 2011, it has been on pace to achieve over 400 million memberships by 2012, and it has been thought of as the Facebook killer and the next big thing to happen in social media. Although Google denies that Google+ is a social networking site, even asking people to stop referring to it as one, it certainly looks, feels and, in a lot of ways, behaves like a social networking site. It lets users connect to other users, share photos, links and videos, organise contacts into “Circles” and do group video calling with its breakthrough feature called “Hangout”.
There are lots of other great features that Google+ has up its sleeves that are capable of turning the social media table into its favour. It also offers lots of great benefits as a tool for business and personal branding. In this post, we’ll take a look at some of the compelling reasons why Google+ is becoming increasingly important as an online branding tool and why you should take advantage of it.
It’s owned by Google
Google is still the hottest property in the online world and it’s the biggest provider of some of the most useful utilities such as search and video (YouTube). Google also offers seamless integration for some of their most popular services like Google Talk, Gmail and now Google+.
That’s why with Google foraying into the world of social media with Google+, it makes perfect sense to set up a Google+ account for yourself for several more reasons.
Crucial for personal branding
Perhaps the most important benefit of Google Plus is its usefulness for personal branding. It’s a great tool for reputation management, as Google+ profiles have the tendency to rank well on searches. In fact, for most personal search results, Google+ profiles are on the number one spot. If you’ve got a nice Google+ profile that’s optimised with relevant information on how you would like people to see you, say as a Technology Blogger, chances are it’s the first thing that they will find on the search results.
Also, Google+ allows you to share the most number of links on your profile so that you can link to as many web properties you may have as possible. You can include links that showcase your web development portfolio, for example. You can include links to your other online profiles such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter. You can also include links to your videos on YouTube. Most especially you can include links to your main website.
Here’s another interesting Google+ feature called Authorship. If you contribute content to a large number of websites, you may want to claim ownership to those to beef up your credibility and authority. With Google+ Authorship, it’s now so simple to claim authority over your content and showcase your writing portfolio as you appear on the search results.
Good for SEO
Google+ is also good for SEO. You see, linking to your online properties from your Google+ profile is a good back linking strategy. Within your Google+ profile you can include several anchor links using words that describe your expertise like “blogging”, “SEO”, “online video marketer”, etc., and point them to your main profile or other website that you control.
It’s also great for local search. Google+ profiles can be optimised for local searches so that you can dominate your niche within your specific location by just a few tweaks in your profile.
For more information on optimising your personal profile and brand with Google Plus drop us a line or contact us today for a free chat.