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How to Maximise Your Content Marketing with Google+

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You may assume that since it hasn’t yet reached the social heights of Facebook or Twitter, Google+ is taking somewhat of a backseat – but you’d be missing a trick to let this one slide.

The word ‘networking’ strikes fear into the hearts of all but a few blessed socialites, but by building your Google+ network, you can give yourself the opportunity to directly influence the personalised search results of every person across your extended network. That’s why it’s so important!

With your Google+ profile, page or community, you can host content that people engage with and share, meaning that, depending upon the authority of those it’s shared with, you may well find that very content appearing in the SERPs. Basically, the more you create, the more you engage, the more you connect and the more authority you build.

Every Google+ profile is indexed and given its own personal PageRank so, as you build your authority, you’ll also build your ranking position – a position that can potentially be seen by anyone, even if they aren’t in your network or even on Google+ at all. Like I say, invaluable.

Here’s what you should be doing to market your content with Google+.

  1. 1.     Building your presence

It’s probably an obvious point but – like pretty much every social media channel going – Google+ is at its most effective and influential when you’re actively using it.

So, let’s start with the basics by ensuring that your profile, page or community looks good and is appealing. As with any social networking site, the idea here is to present the best possible version of yourself and/or your company. This means making sure that all your details are completed, that all links are correct and that your profile picture is suitable for when it appears in the SERPs thanks to the rel=author tag you’ve – of course – implemented (more on this later).

Next up is your content. Posting regularly is the key to the Google+ castle and, as ever, interesting content is the king. Continuously creating appealing, shareable images, posts and videos is vital to interacting with and growing your target audience, which leads us nicely onto…

  1. 2.     Building your network

The basis of Google+ is that it’s a feature of Google and this intrinsically means that it’s a platform designed to house shareable content so that it’s more easily found by Google’s search engines. Therefore, it’s invaluable, unmissable, socially-motivated SEO.

Why you need to engage

It’s not enough to simply follow the cool kids at the Google+ school; you need to be talking to them too. Yes, the higher authority users are potentially the more useful, but you need to build your own interaction instead of hanging on the coattails of theirs. Commenting and +1ing other people’s posts is a good place to start because, whether authoritative or not, networking is about building your name with everyone and anyone relevant.

The benefit of Circles

Circles are a useful addition to this social platform, allowing you to group your followers into different categories, depending on their interests. This means that a) you can share your posts with only the most relevant circles who will receive a notification each time that you do and b) well, you won’t spam your mum with work stuff.

How to use Hangouts

A Hangout is a bit like a video conference with up to ten people, except millions of your fellow users could potentially be watching or listening in. Depending on your brand/company/client, a Hangout could be used to many different ends, for example to engage with your consumers on a visual and personal level or to, y’know, interview someone cool on camera. A Hangout is automatically recorded, uploaded to YouTube and shared on your Google+ page – and of course, you can also share it on any social media site that you desire using its embed code. This means, not only do you have a platform to successfully interact with your audience, but that interaction can also potentially become an excellent piece of highly shareable content marketing – and the best part is that it’s free!

  1. 3.     Promoting your content

Not only does your content potentially reach out to other users, it also ‘markets’ it right to Google. Each time that you post content to Google+, Google indexes it straight away. What’s more, thanks to personalised search, your content is then more likely to appear in the online searches of your contacts.

This is why claiming authorship of your content with the aforementioned rel=author tag is vital. After implementing this, your content and your persona will become inextricably linked, meaning that on the SERPs, your face will always hover next to your content like a social guardian angel, increasing click through rate to your profile (as well as looking nice and friendly). Check out fellow Verve Search’s Ben Holbrook’s article for a more detailed look on how to implement the rel=author tag into your Google+ profile.

Once you’ve done that, you can concentrate on promoting your great content. Be sure to include +1s buttons onto your website and blog posts, so that users can effortlessly like and share your content, even while not specifically on their Google+ accounts. This again is about growing your presence and authority, allowing your community to build around you.