Your Google Plus profile is obviously not simply a representation of you..
..it actually is a presentation of you.
With this said, if you think reputation matters, giving your online presence the best boost will surely bring more of what you wish for.
Today, I have gathered some fresh and easy tips to get your Google Plus profile more presentable and appealing.
For many, this would only mean two or three things from changing your cover image to providing adequate information.
But for us who are serious with dealing with Google especially for ranking and marketing purposes, there’s more to Google+ profile than meets the eye.
To get started, making your profile work at its best is comprised of three key factors:
- Your profile itself
- Your relationship with Google and its users
- Your posts
You might argue that we’re only talking about profile. Well, how bad do you want change?
1. Perfect your Google Plus profile
Your whole profile (not simply your profile image alone) serves as your ‘face’ in the crowd. Like actual faces, you may or may not be totally pleasing and aesthetically appealing. But what you can do to make yourself a more respectable individual is how you present yourself. Check out the tips below to see if you’re already listed among those who do the best practices, so to say:
Use a custom cover photo. Instead of using a generic cover photo, use a custom one that represents your personal brand. Hire someone, use Photoshop or PicMonkey to create your own cover. Size is 2120px in width and 1192px in height.
Bonus Tip: To fully optimize your cover photo, incorporate 'keywords' in your cover photo's filename and add a relevant description on the caption. For full tutorial: click here.
- Add an attractive tagline. You don’t have to be a copywriter to do a tagline. In fact, a short, simple, straightforward, and even an emotional tagline will do. Here are some example taglines that rocks! For live examples, check out Peg Fitzpatrick, Randy Hilarski and Mia Voss. Visit INC to have more tips from real experts about effective taglines.
- Add an unique & memorable “Introduction”. This would be the section where you get to introduce yourself and be more personal. People add you to learn more about you, so it's essential to share who you are and what you're all about. Make it a little bit more interesting by adding your personal story, interests, obsessions, favorites, quotes, etc. Don't forget to use text formatting, bullets or links to make your intro even more fun. Check out Dustin W. Stout's fun and interesting "About" section: Check out this blog if these samples will give you an idea.
- Add your site URL(s) & social media links. This will not only make you look 'socially savvy' and serious with your business, but on the practical side, it can also keep your other accounts active and going by directing people to them. Also, don’t you forget that you’re helping people also to choose the most convenient way for them to reach you.
- Verify your email. A profile with a verified email is more appealing and looks more authentic than a non-verified one. Not to mention, you want to protect yourself from impersonation. Here's an example of verified email of Rebekah Radice, you should see a little "check" icon beside your email:
- Use vanity URL. Simply put, a vanity URL is a more personalized URL compared to that of using serial numbers and letters to link to your profile. With one on your account, you’ll immediately appear more credible, professional, and more memorable. Here's an example: See how the first one looks better than the 2nd one? To learn more about eligibility issues and instructions, visit this help page.
- Fill out all other fields. What about adding your skills, work history, where you live and your education info? For maximum optimization, make yourself sound as impressive as possible by filling out these fields.
One of the main reasons why you need to perfect your profile is YOU must have an attention-grabbing hover card in order to make a solid first impression and thus, gain more targeted followers.
You must have a decent profile picture, an attractive cover photo, a great tagline, your current work info and your location. Here's a great example hover card where all the important info are included:
See how I hover on Rebekah's name? I see an awesome hover card!
2. Share Great Content & Optimize Your Posts
Well, having your profile "completed" is not enough to make your Google Plus interesting. Like everyone says, "Content is King", so therefore sharing great content is required to excite your G+ friends, and to attract more followers. Here's how:
- Provide interesting content consistently. May it be infographics, videos, questions, funny photos (but relevant) or any other shareable content. Do you know why newspapers are sold? Because one issue is not the same as that of yesterday. You’d want to work the same way: always giving something new, at least to your perspective. But if you can provide that which your followers are kind’a waiting for a while now, the better.
- Optimize your post to prompt more engagement. Don't you feel good when you get a lot of +1's, shares and comments? When you share a post, do not just post a link or a picture. Make sure to include a description of what your content is all about. Bold important keywords or title. Always use high quality images. Use relevant #hashtags. Add a CTA such as your link to blog, social links, or questions. And don't forget to add your sources (if applicable). Here's an example:
- Reshare other people’s awesome content. We may or may not yet run out of stuff to talk or post about, but it’s still a good thing to reshare somebody else’s story when done in the right way. Resharing a story makes you look interested to others, and in return making you look interesting as well. If the story you shared is of trending interest to people, you also get a good score along the way.
- No time to share? Use an auto-scheduling tool. Create a post in advance and make a schedule for it using this wonderful chrome extension: Do Share.
3. Update your viral posts
What's unique and amazing about Google+ is the fact that you can keep on editing your posts even when they've gone viral! When one of your posts has been +1'd a lot and shared around, it would be good to edit or update it.
For instance, you have a new blog post related to it. Then you can still embed it without needing to come up with a new post on your social network account.
4. Get Involved and Be Useful
- Help people. You can help people in Google+ in a lot of ways; most of the time, the stories you tell are already help in themselves. But to run the extra mile, you may want to try some few other tactics like offering free e-books, offering links to other helpful resources, and even answering people’s questions!
- Participate in communities within your industry. Contribute something interesting and valuable. You join communities because they’re helpful to you; you get benefits. Share some benefits as well, and the returns will be a hundredfold. Learn how to find communities you'd love.
5. Engage! Be awesome
- Be friendly! Talk to your G+ buddies, respond and make meaningful comments or mention your friends on your posts. You’re not a monument. Your profile is not a sticker. You don’t want to just lay eggs and run. People would love to see you in ‘human form,’ that actually communicates and are interested to people.
- Follow active people that interests you – most likely they’ll add you back. Wait for a period of time to add you “Winners dine with winners,” so to say. Moreover, “tell me who your friends are and I’ll tell you who you are.” Get hooked today and invite interesting people. If the favor is reciprocated, you’re lucky!
- Follow back people (that interests you of course). You cannot always add people just to look ‘huge;’ you’d want to do it properly. When somebody adds you, add them back! This will make you look interested to the other party. However, it’s still up to you as to how you ‘filter’ them.
6. Connect with influential members
Of course, it goes without saying that connecting with the influential members of Google+ can do wonders for your own profile.
There are many ways to do this - mention them in your post, comment on one of their posts, add them to one of your circles, directly share a post with them, or post a content on your stream that will make them tick.
But how do I find Influencers within my industry? Here's what I do:
Use Google+ Ripples. A Ripple is a diagram that shows how a post is shared throughout the realm of Google Plus. I go to a profile within my interests, choose a viral post and view the "Ripples". In this way, I can see those who 'shared' their content and those who 'REshared' from those who directly shared their content.
For example (see screenshot below), I'd go to Mervik Haum's popular post. Mervik Haums is the original poster and those with bigger circles are the top influencers: Christine DeGraff, Martin Shervingtons, Daniel Imbellino and Dyzn infographics. They are called influencers because they have the impact of getting their followers to 'reshare' what they post on their profiles.
You can see the other influencers too by hovering your mouse on their names. Now you can use this to determine the influencers in your industry and make connections with them. Here's a screenshot:In order to view Ripples for a post, find the “drop down” menu button at the top right corner of any public post. And at the bottom of the Ripple window, you will find a list of top influencers, additional statistics, and languages.
- Look What's Hot. In your home stream, go to 'Explore' from the top menu > click 'What's Hot' and you will be able to view those most shared or liked. Of course, you can use Ripples to find influencers.
As you go along using Google+, you'll find out more ways to get in touch with these influential people in your field.
7. Join the fun
- Join circle sharing. Sharing circles and getting included in other people’s shared circles is virtually expanding your horizon and even widening your opportunities for a higher reputation. Moreover, it also makes you more visible! But beware though, if you want targeted followings, be careful of which circle you add. Here are some wonderful circles you’d want to join in: Hyperball Circle Shares and here are some cool circle curators: Robby Ball, Rusty Ferguson, Mario Falcetti, Michael Buttler, Vladimir Samsonov, Altered DNA, Awesome Circles by Paula Teshima.
- Greet someone a happy birthday! Get a little more personal simply by sending e-gifts or e-cards. Even a simple ‘Happy Birthday!’ can lighten up a celebrant’s day!
- Participate in hangouts. Hangouts is already there in front of you, and you’d want to maximize its potent presence in your Google+ experience. Start with your own invitations, and eventually more and more people will invite you.
8. Add Google+ Badge to your Site
Easily market your profile by adding the Google+ Badge to your blog or website. This makes it easy for other people to follow you easily, and even recommend you to other people. A quick vanity URL of yours is also shown. Here's a live example (don't forget to add me!):
Start one now by visiting this link: https://developers.google.com/+/web/badge/
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What about you? What techniques do you use to get noticed on Google Plus?