Checklist for Google Plus SuccessPhew! We’re almost there, today is the final post in the introduction to Google Plus. So far we’ve reviewed Google plus basic features, Google Authorship, how Google plus works with SEO, and today I’m going to provide you with some tips on how to make the most of your Google Plus experience. I want to be up front and tell you that I’m by no means a Google Plus guru, I’m still learning the ropes along with many others. However I have gained enough experience over the past year to share some of the basics and will continue to share more as my knowledge base grows.

Proof Google Plus Works

Google Plus has already been a great source for making connections with a lot of really smart and generous people and more importantly it’s led to real business. I’ve gotten more than a few leads both directly and indirectly as a result of Google Plus. Before I share the tips, here’s a quick success story and an example of how Google Plus can be effective even if a person in your target audience has never heard of it.

About a year ago, I presented a series of 3 SEO workshops via Google Hangouts on Air. The Hangouts came about in kind of a crazy way. I met Gordon Diver (from Canada) on Twitter, he introduced me to Sherry Nouraini (from California) on Google Plus. Sherry asked me if I would do some workshops for her and of course I said yes. It was fun, gave me some great practice and created a perfect opportunity to re-purpose some content.

I embedded the Youtube video in a blog post, one for each workshop and moved on. Six months later, a gentleman in Willow Grove, Pennsylvania contacted me for SEO training and some other consulting services, and we recently wrapped up a successful project.

Here’s where Google Plus fits in; he found the blog posts with the embedded video, watched every minute of two of them, and picked up the phone. He’d never heard of Google Plus.

I hope that story demonstrates the power of the platform and the opportunities it presents to grow your business and develop your brand. Without further ado, here are a few things to keep in mind when you give Google Plus a try.

 Tips for Google Plus Success

  • Set up your personal profile– make it complete, compelling, and relevant (and don’t forget to optimize it)
  • Connect with others who share your interests – keyword searches can help you find people, communities, events
  • Participate – be present and active – take advantage of Communities, hangouts, chats and post on a regular basis
  • Focus on Building Quality Relationships -stay away from spammy followers – quality trumps quantity
  • Share other people’s content – include commentary about why you found it helpful or interesting and give credits and acknowledgements
  • Acknowledge the authors of the content you are sharing –  (if they are on Google Plus +mention them), h/t’s (hat tips) and a +mention are appropriate when you’re sharing something from someone else’s stream
  • Create and share valuable content -the quality of your content defines you and your brand
  • Optimize your posts for readers and search engines – use titles and formatting to help both readers and search engines
  •  Use Hash tags
  •  Be Yourself

This is by no means a comprehensive list of the ins and outs of how to use Google Plus to its fullest potential, but I guarantee you’ll find lots of people who are willing to help you learn.

I invite you to connect with me on Google+.

Update: Unfortunately I accidentally deleted my primary Google Plus account – I’m trying to recover it, but it’s not looking good. In the meantime feel free to circle me here and if my other account is restored I’ll sort things out then and make sure we’re still connected.

Until next time.