Even though we’ve been all skeptic (quite rightfully so judging from a few of Google’s miserable attempts to enter the social media business), Google Plus is still alive and even thriving. In many industries (Travel, technology, business), it’s even rocking!
In my experience (and I am in one of the most popular Google Plus niches: Search and social media), Google Plus has a huge potential of connecting you to influencers and sending traffic to your site.
Here are a few things I’ve found:
- Google Plus posts have a much longer life span than Twitter updates (especially for visual content)
- Google Plus lets you better target your updates than any other social network (Thanks to circles which are surprisingly working)
- Google Plus posts may give your Google search visibility (in personalized results: Your friends will often see you photo and your update when searching Google). This results in even longer life span: Sometimes I see my one-year-old update suddenly get new likes!
- Google Plus can send a good traffic to your site (Not as good as Google, in some industries not as good as Facebook and Pinterest, but definitely better than Twitter)
- Google Plus updates can rank in general Google search results that make their lifespa enormous. Sometimes I get plusses for Google Plys updates that date back to two years ago!
All in all, Google Plus is definitely worth investing your time into. And here are a few tools to help:
1. Google Plus /Explore: G+ Content Marketing
The first tool is Google’s own /Explore section that lets you explore Google Plus trending updates outside of your circles.
Most importantly, the section lets you monitor trending Google #hashtags: If you want a wider a reach for your G+ content, try using those hashtags from time to time to see much better interactions with your updates.
You can also use the section to explore “Related hashtags” to embrace a more targeted approach to Google Plus update tagging.
2. Circloscope: Manage Your Google Plus Circles Easier
This tool has really no alternatives. We talked to its co-founder at our Twitter chat and I started actively using the tool after that (Disclaimer: They gave me a free PRO account to play before the chat).
Some users have reported 1000% growth in followers & engagement after just a few weeks of using Circloscope. I personally got over 2k +1s on a blog post due in large part to using Circloscope smartly
Circloscope has a ton of features and I have yet to discover all of them but here are those I am currently using:
- Discover and circle active users of any community (you can filter results to set the minimum number of followers)
- Discover and circle users who have interacted (liked, re-shared, commented) with the particular Google Plus post
- Discover and circle users who are following you (Who you are not following back)
- Discover people who are not circling you back or who are not active on Google Plus for a long time
- Discover and circle people who are going to the same event you do!
Circloscope is quite powerful for free (the paid version also supports Google Plus business pages and some bulk actions). The only limitation is that you need to be using Google Plus to run it.
3. Cyfe: Monitor Google Plus Hashtags Easier
Cyfe is the only tool I know that allows to effectively monitor Google Plus hashtags. It allows to set up a separate dashboard that would be built of as many widgets you need. I have a separate dashboard for Google Plus searches:
- Monitor search for any or many Google Plus hashtags (Surprisingly, Google hashtags do actually work for visibility!)
- Monitor search for any terms you care about (depending on your niche)
- Whenever you see anything of interest: (1) Go to the update to like and better comment and (2) Add the author to circles. That’s a great way to discover new contacts and generate meaningful interactions!
4. Google Plus Ripples Bookmarklet: Participate in G+ Discussions around Any URL
This tool is browser-based bookmarklet that gives you an easy access to “ripples” (i.e. public shares of any URLs). While you can use Circloscope to add interacts to circles, this one lets you see and participate in various discussions around any URL:
You can use it to discover ripples for your own articles or for any other article where you think you can contribute to a discussion.
And yes, make sure to circle Google Plus users you discuss articles with!
5. CircleCount: Discover Trending Google Plus Communities
Participating in active Google Plus communities is one of the best ways to discover new connections, build traffic and build your Google Plus following. Google Plus does allow you to search for related communities but the search is very limited.
CircleCount ranks Google Plus communities by “fastest growing” which makes it a great discovery tool for active communities. I also like it because I can find some amazing groups there I wouldn’t have thought to look for, such as “Inspirational Quotes” and “Google Plus PRO” tips.
When you are establishing yourself within a community, don’t forget to comment on others’ posts as well. It’s a great way to build following!
Do you have any tools you are using to grow your Google Plus presence? Please share them in the comments!