In some cases, camouflage is a good thing. It helps some of our troops from being seen from the enemy, it enables people to be able to sneak up on an unsuspecting person because the nature of camouflage is to blend in to your surroundings and to keep your visibility low in certain situations. Google Plus, however, is not a place where you want to be good at not being seen. It seems as though when you start on every social media site you are camouflaged. People come so close to your content and they don’t even see it. While this is a bad thing on all social media channels, Google Plus is not a social media platform where you want to be good at hiding. In this article, I want to discuss how you can stay out of the shadows and get people to notice you on this platform.
Now You See Me
Building an online presence on Google+ is simply understanding how everything works. Sure, interaction and engagement are key, and I will follow up on that in a little bit, but when you understand the tools that you have at your fingertips on Google Plus, the more likely it is you’re going to succeed on this platform. Google Plus Hovercards If there’s anything that will help people notice you on this platform it is the hovercard aspect of G+. My good friend Stephan Hovnanian is a pro at getting you to understand just what these hovercards are able to do for you in his article about G+ Hovercards the personal branding tool. In a nutshell, these are “mini business cards that pop all over Google when someone hovers over your name” he says. In the sense of “Now you see me, now you don’t”, Google has given us every opportunity that we can to be seen on their platform. That’s why it’s so important to be engaging with other people, even people you don’t know, because it gives them an opportunity to hover over your name and see what you’re all about on G+. Google Plus Profile Before you get started on Google Plus, its a good idea to fill out your profile to the fullest capacity that you are able. Not only does this help those that click your profile to see who you are, it also tells people the same information, yet in a compacted form, when they hover over your name. This affects your hovercard as well. So not only are they connected, but they work off of each other. No completed profile means zero opportunities that people will get to see who you are, and if you’re not invested enough to fill out your profile, why would someone be invested enough to get to know you better? The most important tool in your main profile is, of course, the profile image. Grabbing an image that is both attractive and tells people who you are is important for getting them to circle you to their stream. I also like how you can provide SEO for your G+ cover photo, so make sure you put that up there too. Google Authorship Google Authorship is still a determining factor. Although it may not be used in eyesight of Google Plus, it is still one of the tools that you need to have active on your profile. Learn how to set up your Google Authorship so that you can fully benefit from this aspect of the platform as well. Even though they have not fully come out and said this, but some people seem to believe that Google will, one day, link your authorship to a ranking factor through various ways, and G+ will be one of them.
Getting Rid of The Camo
Now that you understand some of the tools that you can work with, let’s talk about how you can use them to shed some light on your Google Plus profile. One of the first things that you should do to let people know that you’re active on G+ is to display your Google Plus hovercard on a site that you administrate. That is exactly what I have done to show people who I am and how I have introduced myself to people that visit my site. You should check out Google Developer’s and get your own hovercard html to place on your site that looks like this:
Down To Business Google Plus is unlike any other social network that you will ever have the pleasure of being on. That is why it’s so important to remember all of the unsung rules that the people of Google Plus live by. What are they? I lay it all out for you in The Etiquette For Success on G+ so you can see what you need to do to start building your following the right way. Parlayed with your hovercard, interaction is the most powerful thing you can do on Google Plus. Interaction comes in a lot of different ways, and it can show you just how much people pay attention to you when you engage with them in this way. Here’s some basic interaction tips:
- +1 someone’s post
I recently found an interesting share from +Eric Enge about the meaning of what a “plus 1″ is. I thought it pretty much summed it all up, you can read that here.
- pinging or tagging
It’s hard to believe, but these simple things can get you far on Google Plus. I have made these in order of importance too because of this: A plus one is great, but when you can take it one step further and comment too, then it shows that person that you’re genuinely interested in whatever it is that they posted. Even going beyond that, resharing their posts to your stream is a big step. And then one more step is to ping them in the reshare as the person that brought it to your attention.
Taking off the Camouflage
Using your tools as well as these strategies here on Google Plus will enlighten more people to check you out to see who you really are. Someone that doesn’t stay in the shadows and only promote themselves, someone that is willing to interact and engage with them besides doing the obvious link spamming that most people like to do. With you using your profile as a means of helping your strategy to build more followers and active engagers on Google Plus is going to show people that you do exist on G+. Capitalize on this by doing everything you can to look…human….gasp
The Final Thought
Google Plus is not a fly-by-night social platform. Eventually it will be the future of social media marketing. Coupled with SEO and their ever popular search platform, G+ will be the epitome of what people will be using in the future as far as both. While some people, like the YouTube users, may not accept the Google way, you may as well get used to it and do everything you can to stake your brand on this platform.