Anyone who has spent a couple of hours on Google+ probably already understands just how different it is from other social media sites. From marketer’s perspective, these differences present a unique set of challenges to understand the strengths and weaknesses of using Google+ to reach customers. Fortunately, there are several simple tips and tricks you can use to help you get started. Below we’ll look at seven ways you can increase your follower count on Google+, and a few of them might surprise you.
Share Content from Your Personal Profile
For anyone new to Google+, one of the best tips you can take is to create interaction between your business page and your personal profile. Odds are, your personal profile has many more connections than your business page, and this trick allows you to make the most of your resources. Start by posting an interesting article on your Google plus business page. From there, you switch to your personal Google+ profile, and then +1 and share that content. This tip works because anything that you give +1 to may show up in your followers’ news feed, increasing the chance it will be seen and shared.
Many Google+ users forget about hashtags. Similar to how they’re used on Twitter, adding hashtags to a Google+ post allows your content to be tagged with particular keywords, and anyone following those hashtags or searching for recent posts related to that tag can then easily find your content. Similar to working on Twitter, you’ll want to restrain yourself to two or three tags per post. Any more than three tags and your content will begin to look like spam.
There is more than likely a Google+ event pertinent to your niche. If you attend these events, you can gain insight, become further integrated with the community, and ultimately draw attention to your own page. Talk with the people who show up to these events, offer your own perspective, and you’ll probably end up getting invited to several new circles. If you think getting another 10 or 20 high-quality followers is worth an hour of your time, attending Google+ events is a great idea.
Engage with Hot and Recommended Topics
Like many social media sites, Google+ allows users to browse a list of what’s trending. Surprisingly, it’s not that difficult to become a part of this list. The trick is to create viral friendly content that manages to collect enough shares to trigger the Google+ algorithm that keeps track of what’s popular on the site. According to several studies, the content most likely to get you sufficient shares are .gif images. In most cases, these popular .gif images have only peripheral relevance to the hosting page. Although it’s very unlikely that you’ll make the list on your first attempt, it’s a goal worth striving towards because achieving it even one time can be a serious boon for your brand.
Ask to Receive
Asking for followers is tricky business. On one hand, you don’t want to come off as desperate or begging, but you also need to ask for people to follow you if you want to rapidly expand your readership. The trick to being successful in this endeavor is writing a strong call to action. Whenever you find yourself sharing, posting, or giving a +1 on Google+, consider adding a call to action explaining what you want your reader to do and why that action will benefit them. Try to steer clear of more generic CTA like “please join us on Google+”, and more towards specific and value laden propositions like “join us for more great #fishing content.”
At its core, Google+ is a social experience. Consequently, circling other people and businesses on Google+ is a great way to grow your follower base. For instance, if your business page has a physical location, you can create a circle exclusively for people and businesses in your immediate area. Creating these relationships between pages it’s a great way to collect more followers both locally and abroad, depending on how you build your circles.
Use a Google+ Badge
If you have a website or blog, make sure that you have a visible Google+ badge, allowing people to quickly and easily follow your page. The easier you make it for people to follow you, the more likely they will. Additionally, these badges notify you anytime someone adds your page to a circle, which presents you with the opportunity to interact with their content and ultimately build a relationship. The easier it is for someone to share your content, the more likely it will be shared, and the easier it is to follow you on Google+, the more likely people will follow you.