How to Build Your Brand’s Digital Ecosystem with Search and Social
By Louise LinehanJul 15
Despite the recent hype that was kicked off by Tech Crunch, Google+ is still alive and kicking.
It’s not going anywhere and I’m glad.
It’s a great platform and it’s turning out to be much easier to generate an engaged following than on other networks.
And from a user perspective, it’s a refreshing environment in comparison to the likes of Facebook.
But, what does it mean for brands?
A study by Forrester Research found that users interacted with brands posts, almost as much as on Facebook.
That begs the question, what tools can help you get more out of Google+? Let’s take a look…
One of the things that I love about Google+ is the post formatting options.
This has always been a bit tricky, but, that isn’t the case with Post Editor.
It adds the ability to format your posts and use bold, italics and strikethrough’s right from within Google+. There is also an option to add symbols.
The only downside is that this is a Google Chrome extension.
Try using bold headings and sub headings in italic text and see what that does to your posts – you might find you get more engagement.
Social media statistics are published all the time and most are great.
The one’s that get me though, are the ones that tell people when to publish content.
They’re always using someone else’s data, but, what’s the point when it’s not your data?
There isn’t really, that’s why you need to utilize your own data.
That leads me on to my next tool, Timing+.
It’s incredibly easy to use – just sign in to G+ and it will analyse your last 100 posts to give you an idea of the best time to publish.
There will definitely be other factors at work (for example, if you are tagging other influential users), but it can work well as a bench line.
CircleCount is a free tool that helps you make sense of Google+.
You can use the tool to track your followers, which will give you some indication to how well you’re doing, although that doesn’t tell you how engaged your followers are.
Where this comes in handy is finding relevant users to engage with.
You can break users down into topical areas (amongst other filtering options) and get additional information on them.
You’ll also find links to other social profiles, e.g. Linkedin, Facebook and Twitter.
Steady Demand have been offering Google+ services for a while now, but this tool is something that will definitely be a game changer for marketers using G+.
Steady Demand Pro gives you access to incredible insights that just aren’t found in other tools, yet.
Not only that but you can track your competitors and even get guidance on what you should do next to improve your results.
If you’re looking for detailed data on a Google+ user, All my + is a great option.
The depth of the information that this pulls in is crazy, you can see things like someone’s posting behaviour per weekday or per hour.
You can even find out which people are actively re-sharing content from particular people.
You also have the option to download the raw data.
If you’re publishing content, you can also benefit from setting up authorship on your website.
This means that on some occasions your photo (with links to your G+ account) will be included in search engine results.
In some industries this has been known to increase click through rates and when your authority increases, people will begin to recognise you.
Google Webmaster Tools has a testing tool which you can use to check whether your content has authorship setup.
This post also has some more details on how to get Google Authorship setup.
One of the issues with Google+ is that you cannot manage a personal profile from any of the regular social media management platforms (e.g. Hootsuite or Buffer).
You can manage brand pages though.
Do Share is one of the only tools (currently), which allows you to schedule Google+ posts on personal profiles.
The only downside is that, because Do Share is a Google Chrome extension, you need to have your browser open for this to work.
Google+ allows you to manage your circles and there is a lot you can do.
That being said, if you want to be able to filter your circles and manage them easier, Circloscope works great.
The magic happens with the action section.
You can add users to a circle, move to a circle, remove from a circle or remove from all circles at the click of a button.
You also get the option to export your data.
Price: free (premium account available)
NOD3x is a tool that has so much potential.
If you want to get into a deeper level of analysis on Google+ and start data mining – you will love this.
Some of the insights you can get include:
NOD3x isn’t limited to Google+; you can also pull in data from YouTube and Facebook too.
Klout, Peerindex and Kred scores are also pulled in.
The level of depth in this tool is incredible; this #TNTBootcamp video from Ronnie Bincer and Christine DeGraff has a great explanation of how you can use this tool with Lee Smallwood from NOD3x:
Which tools are you using right now that are giving you great results on Google+?
I’d love to hear more in the comments below.