Google+: The Basics

Now that you’ve set up your Google+ page, it’s time to start using this social network to your advantage. Your end goals for Google+, as in all social networks, is to grow your brand following, engage with fans, and hopefully convert those fans to customers.

+1s and Sharing

On Google+, +1s are the equivalent of “likes” on Facebook. Search for new pages and users to +1 and add in the search bar at the top of your Google+ page. Once you follow (or +1) a person or business, their posts will appear on your home page. This is similar to a Facebook news feed, with one important exception: you’ll see ALL Google+ posts from people you follow. By +1-ing or sharing posts from other pages, you’ll engage, increase your visibility, and beef up your following.

Circles

Circles are groups of pages you’ve +1’d on Google+. You can sort every brand or company page you +1 into a different category. The names you give each circle should relate to your business or industry. For example, some circles on the CGT Marketing page are “Advertising/Marketing Resources,” “Social Media Resources,” and “Agencies.” To add a page to a circle, hover your mouse over its profile photo then hover over the “follow” button to choose a circle.

Hashtags

Similar to Twitter and now Facebook, Google+ posts are sorted using hashtags. When posting, you can add hashtags yourself, or Google+ will often actually put them in for you (it doesn’t always, so we suggest making sure all of your posts have hashtags). When you click on a tag in any post, you’ll be able to toggle through other posts with the same one. It’s a great way to lend more visibility to your own posts and find others that align with your industry and expertise.