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October 4, 2011 Social Media

Gear-up for Google+ Entity

Google+ created ripples in the virtual world initially, but what it didn’t expect was a slap in the face with the launch of Facebook’s new f8 timeline and introduction of features which were earlier limited to Google+. The web giant is now crouching low, but only because it’s ready to pounce once again. The fastest growing social-networking site is all set to launch it’s business pages, officially called the Google+ Entity.

There are no brand pages just yet, and those who were stupid enough to break the Google Terms of Service by making brand profiles were kicked out before they could say ‘Zuckerberg’. There were however invitations for selected businesses to try out Entity.

Though the applications are now closed, you can see small evidences of corporate presence on Google+. For example, if you were to visit your Google+ profile and edit ’employment’ or ‘education’, you can now see suggestions for employers and institutions.

Google+, backed with Google’s gigantic 65% share in online search, can prove to be one fat lamb for businesses to cash in on online marketing. Even though Google refused to comment on it, the +1 button is much more than Facebook’s ‘like’ button. It may very well have substantial effects on your search result standings.

Ladies and gentlemen, if that stands to be correct, we may soon have to rethink the protocols of SEO and SMO. It would be a good idea to do a little homework before incorporating Google+ entity into our business strategies. Lets see a few ways how we can research Google+ using our current profiles to become an early-adopting business on Entity.

Business Representative

So you can’t be a business on Google+ yet, big deal! Who’s stopping the business representatives from promoting the brand? Use your personal account to let people know about your company. Share links, add people, use the innovative ‘incoming’ feature to reach out.

Google+ is like ‘twitter in reverse’. Whoever you add to your circles can see YOUR posts in their incoming stream. Build relationships and drive their interest. This will help build a fan base even before your business page has rolled out.

Stalk Before The Kill

(Stalking and killing is illegal, please read the whole thing before doing anything stupid). There are niche phrases which you can use to search the target audience. Use the ‘Find People’ option to find the likely targets. Connect with such people, interact with them and increase their curiosity. Add industry leaders and regularly check their updates.

Make some noise

There is an advantage to using a personal profile to promote a brand. People are more prone to respond to a person, breathing and living than a brand. If they have heard the name of your brand, they would want to grab the opportunity to find out more by connecting directly to you.

You are already invited

One of the greatest things about Google+ is that if you can see a conversation or a hang-out in progress, it means you are invited to it. These updates are visible only to those who have been approved to join. Hence if you see a question that needs an answer or a video hangout, just put on a nice hat and jump in.

Incoming!

Not only will your posts appear in the incoming feeds of the people in your circles, but you have an incoming feed of your own where you can find out what people are up to. It will give an idea about which person is likely to be interested in your business. Find conversations and contribute your opinions. Find ways to mention your business and let them know how it can help them.

Don’t Overload!

People don’t just like to hear, they also like to be heard. So instead of just sharing your knowledge and bombarding their feed with links, try to find out their views. People have much more fun in commenting and exchanging ‘+1’ than clicking on links and going through elaborate websites. Posting links will direct traffic to your blogs and websites, but only when you give them a reason to be interested.

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