Are you looking for better engagement on Google+?
Google+ has a unique culture and set of capabilities that set it apart from other social networks.
Here are four tips that have helped me build engagement and expand business networking.
#1: Follow Active People Relevant to Your Business
Wherever you invest time online, have a target audience or connection with people who could be interested in your product or service, which will eventually lead to sales.
Now, finding these people can be a bit of a challenge, but search makes your job a lot easier.
Imagine your online community is a group of hungry people who walk up to a table where you have a spread of finger foods and appetizers. That’s your online content.
By watching which items disappear quickly, you learn what your audience truly wants. That’s the content that satisfies their hunger. And that’s what you need to give them.
In this article I’ll show you 8 ways to discover what topics satisfy the hunger in your online community.
#1: Ask your community
Most businesses assume that they know what their online community wants to hear from them. There’s nothing like doing a reality check by asking your community directly. What you learn might surprise you.
When little-known, first-term Illinois senator Barack Obama faced Hillary Clinton in the 2008 Democratic presidential campaign, he knew he couldn’t compete with her financially. He couldn’t afford telemarketing and direct mail campaigns or TV and radio advertising.
So instead of playing by the old rules, he made new rules. He started blogging and he created profiles on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube.
He also hired the co-founder of Facebook, Chris Hughes, to be his Internet strategist. And he won the Democratic presidential nomination even though he spent a lot less money than his opponent.
At the time of the election, Obama had five million fans on Facebook—over four million more than Clinton. On MySpace, the numbers were approximately 800,000 and 200,000, respectively. On Twitter, he had over 100,000 followers and his opponent had about 5,000.
Do you have a social media strategy? Does it involve content? Should it?
The other day I drove past a local convenience store that makes most of its profit from beer, Slush Puppies and beef jerky (not that there’s anything wrong with that). A big sign out front asked passers-by to Like them on Facebook.
“It’s official,” I thought. “Now every business in America has a Facebook page.”
Unfortunately, few businesses actually have a strategy for their Facebook page, or for the rest of their social media activity. They tweet, blog and set up a Facebook business page out of fear of being left behind, rather than as a way to engage their audience.
After all, would YOU do business (knowingly) with a sketchy person?
But with the rise of social media comes new challenges for businesses of all shapes and sizes, especially when it comes to reputation: Who knows you and what do they know you for?
Are you helpful? Are you a great person to do business with? Are you a trusted resource or a product pusher?
This is not a post about social media marketing. I’m not here to give you hints on how to increase your friends, fans and followers.
Nor will I say that it’s time for your business to “join the conversation” and I promise not to overuse the word transparency either.
I believe that most brands (large and small) get it.
Friends, fans and followers are important, yes. And brands increase their social equity by engaging in two-way dialogue with their constituency, yes. And transparency is key to these external engagements, yes.
However, there’s uncertainty around how to create a sustainable social media campaign, although the tools are plentiful and often free.