Have you started experimenting with Google+? Are you sitting on the sidelines thinking "I'll wait until Google+ matures," or letting the in-crowd like Robert Scoble, Scott Monty, and Chris Brogan figure it out before you test it. If either of these options sounds like you, know that Google+ isn't another flash-in-the-pan social media site. Google+ is in the social media battle to win your time and attention as an individual and a marketer.
Need data to motivate you to jump into the Google+ fray? Google+ had 1.8 million total visits as of the week ending July 16, according to Experian Hitwise. While less than 0.5 percent of Facebook's traffic, Google+ has Mark Zuckerberg's attention. Why? Because he's got a competitor that's growing fast and has the potential and financial resources to keep growing exponentially without hurting its bottom line.
Look deeper at Experian Hitwise's results and you'll find that 57 percent of visits to Google+ are male for the four weeks ending July 16. Unlike other geeky, technology products, Google+ skews only slightly male; this may be attributable to being a social media platform making it less geeky, and/or that the initial invitees may have been more male. Over time, this mix will likely become more equally balanced. Roughly three out of five upstream visitors to Google+ last week came from other Google properties, two in five came from search engines, and one in five came from email.
7 Ways to Kick Google+'s Social Media Tires Now!
As a marketer, it's critical to get onto Google+ and start kicking the social media tires. To get your social media marketing on track with Google+, here are seven steps to follow.
The important takeaway is that you've got to jump onto Google+ now. Understand that part of the strength of Google+ is that it's more careful with customer information and privacy than Facebook. To this end, participate and value your user interactions, because it's difficult to build consumer trust in today's message-laden environment. Remember, social media platforms are about paying-it-forward, not promoting your latest marketing message. Your marketing succeeds because you're transparent in your social media interactions because consumer trust is gone.
Is there anything else that you'd add to this list for marketers looking to get onto Google+? If so, please add your suggestions in the comments section.
BTW, if you're on Google+, please add me to one of your circles.
Meet Your Favorite ClickZ Contributors
Many of ClickZ's leading expert contributors will be at ClickZ Live, the new online and digital marketing event kicking off in New York (March 31-April 3). Hear from the likes of: Jeremy Hull, Lisa Raehsler, Andrew Goodman, Bryan Eisenberg, Mathew Sweezey, Aaron Kahlow, Stephanie Miller, Simms Jenkins, Jeanne S. Jennings, Dave Hendricks and more!
Heidi Cohen is the President of Riverside Marketing Strategies, an interactive marketing consultancy. She has over 20 years' experience helping clients increase profitability by developing innovative marketing programs to acquire and retain customers based on solid analytics. Clients include New York Times Digital, AccuWeather.com, CheapTickets, and the UJA. Additionally, Riverside Marketing Strategies has worked with numerous other online content/media companies and e-tailers.
Prior to starting Riverside Marketing Strategies, Heidi held a number of senior-level marketing positions at The Economist, the Bookspan/Doubleday Direct division of Bertelsmann, and Citibank.
Heidi is also a popular speaker on current industry topics.
March 19, 2014