How to Use Google+: The Most Important Social Network You Likely Aren’t Using

How to Use Google+

With over 140 million users and growing, Google+ likely isn't your favorite social media network.  Earlier this year, comScore reported that while the number of users is growing, the average Google+ user spends only 3 minutes per month on Google+ itself.  Google itself reported slightly different numbers in June, saying that its users averaged 12 minutes per day "in the stream," reflecting usage of all of Google's products such as YouTube, Docs, etc. 

That doesn't exactly sound like a lot of people are comfortable knowing how to use Google+! While some people see it as a poorly executed Facebook clone, nothing could be further from the truth, and there are some great minds in social media marketing that agree with me.  If you're not convinced there are good reasons for you to learn "one more thing" in social media, let me give you 5 good reasons you need to learn how to use Google+ now!

How to Use Google+:  5 Reasons Google+ Matters to your Marketing

#1 – In Google+, it's easier to control who sees your updates:  Let's face it. Your boss doesn't need to see your family pictures.  While Facebook lists can help you control who sees which updates, Google's Circles (in my opinion) make the process of limiting sharing to select groups much, much simpler.  How to use Google+ to control updates?  It's simple.  Create Circles for work, family, prospects, and anyone else you want to, assign people to those groups, and with each post, you're asked to select which Circles you want to share with. Simple and easier to make sure each post is seen by the appropriate audience.

#2 – Notifications: Your Google+ notifications icon sits in the upper right hand corner of every Google screen.  As a result – it's quite easy to stay on top of updates, +1's, and messages when you're online.  If you use Google's Chrome browser, you can download an extension that allows you to see your updates next to the address bar even when you're not on a Google website. 

#3 – Position Yourself as a Thought Leader:  As your opinion and activity on Google sites builds, you build your personal brand at the same time.  Imagine the credibility it gives you when a prospect searches for information about business management and sees a miniature version of your profile picture next to some of the results.

#4 – SEO Opportunity:  This is quite possibly one of the biggest reasons you should learn how to use Google+ now.  Google+ profiles and pages are integrated into search results.  So – you could potentially move higher in ranking on Google based on your Google+ profile, even if your website isn't as highly ranked.

#5 – Look More Professional:  Like LinkedIn, the fact is that Google+ profiles and interactions have a much more professional appearance than on Facebook. Having a robust presence on Google+ suggests you are a professional wanting to engage with other professionals about more weighty topics (and not just the latest meme or e-card floating around Facebook).  Knowing how to use Google+ effectively allows you to interact with some of the brightest minds on topics of your choosing (and as a social platform, as you continue to use it, it even recommends people to follow based on the content you search and share.

Do you have other favorite reasons for knowing how to use Google+ to build your social presence online?  Leave a comment below – I'd love to know! 

37 Comments

  1. Google + may be geared towards SEO and be better for my business but there is still that learning curve. Working on it, but there are only so many hours in the day.

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    • Great point Carla. I agree. Don’t bite off more than you can handle at the moment.

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  2. Great post Edmund. I am making it a point to use Google+ more. 

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  3. I don't know why I can't seem to hit my groove with this one, but I'm going to use this as motivation and really try to get past the learning curve with G+ now!

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  4. Thank you for yor tips and advice .  I enjoy google +.

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  5. Thank you. Makes sense. Great article!

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  6. Love this. I am learning Google + as fast as I can 🙂 Thanks Edmund.

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  7. I have yet to fully engage in Google+ but it is definitely on my list…taking notes! Thanks Edmund!

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  8. Well explain, thank you. You are right, people are just not use to it and still do not see the why use it.

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  9. Wow Edmund, you are speaking directly to me! I haven't gotten the hang of Google+ yet, I don't even think about it regularly. I promise myself that I will make it a regular part of my marketing before the end of this year. Thanks for sharing!

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  10. I actually like Google + better than Facebook, but don't spend near as much time as I should on there. It's something I plan to remedy in the coming year.

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    • Sounds like a good plan for the upcoming year. If there was one to focus on, it would be that.

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  11. Edmund, I don't use google + very often…: (  Thanks for all of the great reasons to get on board with this!
    Sherie recently posted..Is There Any Value to Anger?My Profile

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  12. Great explanation of the many benefits of using Google+. Reminds I need to start being more involved on this oh so valuable network. Beautiful graphic also by the way!

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  13. It's been interesting to see how my interaction with Google+ has creeped into my Google search results!  I am now seeing relevant posts from people in my circle prioritized in my results!  That's a neat way for them to influence me even when I'm not being social…

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  14. Good points Lee. As you mention in  your fifth point Google+ is indeed more professional than Facebook. Each channel has its specific use and I would only use Facebook for typical consumer products, while Google+ and LinkedIn are much better for B2B. I feel that Facebook is more like a gathering of friends, or a birthday party, and you do not want a Sales rep to walk into your birthday party. For a tupperware party it is great, specially because you always end up with great gifts while you are being shown the product. On the other hand, towards business partners and business clients it will look much more professional when I address them from Google+ or LinkedIn.

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  15. I have only used Google + with my coach. I do like it, but have not had the time to really learn it. Posts like these give me a greater understanding. Thanks!

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  16. My challenge with Google+ is that the same people I connect with on other social media platforms are in my circles. I have to learn to circle out so-to-speak.

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  17.  

    Excellent article for Google+ Edmund.  Will focus more closely on my profile to have more prospect for business management.

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  18. Great points Edmund.  Google+ will work for you if you actually put in the time.

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  19. Awesome tips on probably the least used social network (by me anyways). Another reminder that I need to utilize it more.

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    • The majority of us are all on the same boat. You’re welcome Mike.

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  20. I understand how important Google+ is – I'm just running out of time keeping it up with it all! Any tips for the time-challenged among us? (Looks like I'm not the only hapless time-challenged person!)

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    • Only take on what you can handle Katrina. You don’t have to be everywhere. You only need to be the places that matter to you and your audience. If your audience is in a variety of places, choose the ones that you enjoy.

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  21. Edmund, in always trying to hone my online skills, I have ventured into Google+. I'm finding that many in my real estate social network on ActiveRain.com are endorsing, sharing links of their blogposts as I do and now there is a way to do that on our site at ActiveRain, making it quite easy. Rome wasn't built in a day, right?

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    • Rome was definitely NOT built in a day. It’s all part of the learning process. Step by Step .. =)

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  22. Thank you Edmund! Great article. I have been using Google+ for trainings with my team but have never posted…you are certainly giving me food for thought…I better get cracking! Hope you are well!

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    • I am. Thank you Stephanie! Glad to provide you the insight.

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  23. Thanks Edmund,

    I started with G+ when it first started BUT then like many got disillusioned because people just were not flocking over there like I thought they would. Maybe time to take another look at it.

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    • It’s still a growing medium. It will take time for people to become more actively involved there.

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  24. I love the Google+ it has promoted my business worldwide I have a small eBay business and not many people can find it easily. I have been promoting Google + with all of my friends and networking I think it is great.the only problem that I have had is with Google Chrome it tries to shutdown my computer repeatedly. So until it is fixed I won’t redownload it on my computer.I will say that Google Plus is so much better than Facebook my husband and I are getting to the point that we are considering leaving them. It is turning into MySpace slowly but surely. We left myspace a long time ago. Thanks for giving as a social network that actually works for us. Ron and Beverly Kelsey at Legend of a dragon and a deer

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  25. It's been hard for me to wrap my head around Google+ and just had this conversation with someone else earlier today. I have a google+ page and a google+local which use to be google places. I've heard some experts say don't even bother with google+local. I've setup authorship and put the authorship on each of my own blog post. I do very little sharing on google+ and no interaction. When authorship got all the attention initially I started setting clients up on authorship and there's been nothing else done with their google+ pages. Some are completely blank with only the clients name picture and authorship setup. I've not been using their authorship because it will link people back to an inactive google+ page. Frankly Google seems to be confused about what they are attempting to do with google+ and so are a lot of people. It's low on my list of things to learn and I understand it needs to be more of priority.
     

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  26. I recently started my campaign on Google+ and it has seriously made my website's SEO results improve drastically! 

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