4 Reasons Your Social Media Marketing Should Include Google+ in 2013

Google+ for Social Media Marketing Weidert GroupIt’s that time of year for resolutions, all those things you plan to do for 2013 but will probably give up by February. When it comes to your social media marketing for 2013, there is one resolution you need to make sure you keep all year long – adding Google+ to your social media marketing strategy.

Now, we’ve never kept it a secret here at Weidert Group that we were not big Google+ fans when it first debuted. While we’ve had a business page and most of us have personal pages, we’ve not given Google+ the love and attention we’ve dedicated to other platforms such as LinkedIn, Twitter and even Facebook.

But as we’ve watched the growth in features and effectiveness, relegating this social media channel to a second-tier status just doesn’t seem to be a good strategy anymore. Successful Inbound Marketing is predicated on being found when relevant prospects conduct an Internet search. Why not dedicate some time to a social media tool that will improve your chances?

We know it’s going to take some convincing, but here are 4 reasons you should add Google+ to your social media marketing resolutions for 2013:

It’s Google.

OK, maybe that doesn’t ring like a great reason right off the bat, but think about it. Despite some valiant efforts by others, Google is still the #1 search engine out there, and Google+ is its social media tool. Content shared on Google+ is going to be indexed more quickly and show up on search returns faster than any other social media channel.

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Critics are quick to point out that Google+ still lacks the engagement of other social media channels, with users averaging about 3.3 minutes compared to 7+ hours for Facebook. But remember this equation: Google+=Google. Using Google+ to share content and engage prospects will enhance your SEO efforts. It’s why we added authorship tags linking our Google+ accounts to all of our blog posts.

Weidert Group Google+ Authorship tags

Weidert Team member Frank Isca detailed those benefits earlier this year in his post Why Now is The Time to Reevaluate Google+ for Enhanced SEO.

Prospect Segmentation

When Google+ debuted, the concept of Google Circles did not go over well. But if you think about it, the concept is really quite brilliant. Given how noisy the social media universe has become, it can be a challenge to get your message to prospects and followers. Google Circles is really nothing more than a segmentation tool that allows you to target your messages to relevant prospects. In Google+, you are performing that segmentation on the front end, rather than at the time of sending your message.

New Tools

Goolge+ is rapidly closing the gap with its competitors when it comes to improved tools marketers can use to engage with prospects and followers. When Google+ first introduced business pages, it only allowed direct interaction with users who had already added the page to their circles. That meant business pages weren’t able to +1, share, or comment on posts from users who had not added the page to a circle. That’s about to change, and now business pages will be able to interact with any user. The Next Web published a blog Dec. 28 about the changes, which have subsequently been confirmed by Google.

The Next Web blog also detailed a dedicated Google+ analytics tool, though the search engine giant has backed off any specifics. When launched, the tool will provide specific data regarding which users are interacting with a page, how they interact, detailed demographics and information about users’ social activities including +1’s, shares, and comments.

That’s a treasure trove of information for marketers looking to determine what content leads to greater engagement.

When it comes to improved engagement, Google+ also introduced Communities in December, a feature similar to Facebook and LinkedIn Groups, but with greater flexibility in filtering and finding relevant conversations. Google+ Communities can be a great tool for showcasing your company’s expertise.

Google  Hangouts can be a great way to engage prospects Weidert Group

Ease of Use

Things can get cluttered when working in social media, but Google+ does a lot to keep things simple. First of all, posts appear in your feed with the newest one on top and you don’t have to sort through a stream of app requests to view them.

The navigation is simple, and makes sense. Another big plus? No ads!

Weidert Group Google+ Profile clean and easy to use

Google+ has taken a functional approach to its design, making it easy to post and engage.

With all the improvements Google+ has undergone in 2012, along with its growth to 500 millions registered users, it seems to have finally positioned itself a a top-tier social media channel. That’s not to say you should abandon or relegate your other social media profiles. Google+ should be seen as an additional opportunity.

The name of the game is increasing the opportunities for relevant prospects to find and engage with your great content. Google+ has matured to the point where it is an effective tool for sharing your content, engaging prospects and sending important social media signals to the search engines for improved rankings.

We’ll be working both collectively and individually to maximize our presence there in 2013. What do you think? Is 2013 the year you actively use Google+ for your social media marketing? We’d love the hear your thoughts on why or why not?

One other item for your 2013 resolution list: make sure all of your social media profiles are fully optimized for the new year. Learn how with our Social Media Optimization Playbook!

Comments: 28

  • G+ might have be just 1 more social network. However, it’s gaining steam. It’s clearly put together well. Your article nails it. Thanks

  • Robert says:

    Really like the communities idea. Hope it continues to expand! Great article!

  • Google plus is way better than Facebook from 1 year experience it is more engaging if you know how to target the right kind of people

  • Steve Kent says:

    Good advice, G+ is certainly streets ahead for benefitting SEO, we’ve been re-evaluating it and starting to work out a strategy for the year.

    • That’s what we have been doing as well. We’d love to hear what strategy you ultimately adopt and what the results are. Let us know. Thanks for reading and commenting.

  • G+ is definitely a one more social media site, but with a packet full of benefits and opportunities.

  • We hope our post provided some guidance on how you can best use Google+. We’d love to hear your success story. Thanks for reading and commenting.

    • Good post Sean. Agree with the other commentors who have highlighted communities as a positive step forward for Google+. We have already started to see discussion building within the communities we have set up on behalf of our clients, even within niche market segments – 2013 looks promising for Google+ and those involved.

  • Tami says:

    I may get castigated for saying so, but G+ has had a higher collective IQ of users than some other sites since its launch. Granted, there are people of all walks of life, but the engagement feels more intelligent and people that follow businesses tend to engage with more purpose than on other sites I’ve belonged to.
    Your article was well done, and I think your advice is spot on. I’ve gained a lot of business from G+ over the past year.

  • Kuldip Singh says:

    Could you suggest a good primer for somebody like me,planning to start out on G+.
    Wishing you and everybody at Weidert Group a Healthy,Happy and Prosperous New Year.

  • Thanks for writing this article so those that have been hesitant to check out G+ before may have some more guidance. I guess I’m just a G+ Fanboy as I saw the SEO benefits in the Platform quite a while ago and have not ‘looked back’ since.

    I guess writing that it has ‘finally matured’ enough to be worth looking at, makes it less threatening for those that did not want to join the party earlier… and allows them to save face for entering now.

  • Matt Coffy says:

    Google+ should really be among the tools you should put high importance and focus on this year. Definitely, it’s not meant to replace Facebook and the other social media platforms (where you’ve already built your connections), but let’s just face it – it’s Google. Thanks for your insights, Sean. Great read.

  • Evita says:

    Thank You for your article, Sean! I was just looking for answer – why to create G+page, discussing with other artists – is it worth to spend time on it! After reading your list of reasons – I start to be more positive about it!

  • Jae Rustia says:

    at first it’s really hard to understand how G+ works, well even at this moment, I’am still trying to catch up with the G+, still reading things on how we can maximize its use, the things that can help cater whatever industry we are in and all those sorts, thanfully there are articles like this that helps us.

  • Sean, thank you for taking the time to put this article together. It is the single bets piece I have seen on Google+ and its utilization as a marketing catalyst. I have been on G+ for a while but have not leveraged well. In 2013 I plan to change that, thanks to you! Have a great and prosperous year!

  • Google+ is becoming popular to social marketers. If you are thinking of marketing your product, I think the Google+ must be the first on your list not just because its Google but because of 3 other reasons.Thanks for this article Sean!

  • In my opinion, Google+ is great. People just haven’t warmed up to it. Personally, I stay on Facebook… but that’s only because all of my contacts are still there. I would migrate to G+ in a heartbeat if only I could get my usual connections on it as well, but they’re not about to join my little “revolution” any time soon, given that they also have plenty of friends on Facebook that they’d be leaving behind.

  • do think 2013 will be the year for Google+. It has already gained so many users by providing elements that other social media sites do not. However, I am not sure opening business pages to the public is a good idea. I think it might damage the SPAM-free factor that users are really enjoying.

  • Sean, nobody beat up on Circles — that was the best part of the initial launch. The issue was lack of controls over those circles — meaning, people thought they were messaging a circle, but instead hit everyone (a very public example happened with a Google employee). I agree that people need to be using G+. As a technology evangelist, I’m always looking for additional content delivery mechanisms, and the G+ footprint is growing. But its not the G+ page/space that will make it important going forward, but how Google incorporates it into their other properties and partners with other tools/sites to provide an integrated solution. Social works best when it is an unbranded, unseen layer of fabric between workloads. I’m interested to see how G+ adapts to that future.

  • Catching up after a year of totaly neglecting G+ and liking what I see now, and Sean, great article and content but what I liked even more is the quality of you writing.
    I’m so tired of people writing 567… words before they ever get to the point, that self adoring attitude is so time consuming for readers. With English not being my native language, I find it hard to filter the unnecessary but I wouldn’t want to miss anything either.
    Your content is concrete, right on the point and a big thanks for that!

  • Carl says:

    I was completely underwhelmed by Google plus at first but find myself slowly warming to it,Id be amazed if there was no link between Google plus local and link juice, its actually quite good for connecting to people /organisations who are ‘thought Leaders’ to pinch the in vogue term

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