It’s that time of year again, the #blogsofaugust Google+ challenge!
If you ever wanted to break out of your current blogging rut, try your hand at social blogging on Google+. For a month, make Google+ your primary blogging platform and see what happens. Here’s why I’m taking up the challenge:
I’m still planning a few things for WebEnso, a tools resource page and some design adjustments (check out the Google+ badge to the right!). But for this month, most of my writing will be on Google+
If you are interested in joining the fun but aren’t sure where to start read this eweek article from Mike Elgan. On page 2 he says: “Blog about three things: What you experience, what you think and what you make.” That is precisely what I intend to do.
On April 24, 2014 Vic Gundotra tendered his resignation. Widely regarded as the driving force behind Google+, his leaving raises a lot of questions about the future of Google+. TechCrunch reports in it’s provocatively titled “Google+ Is Walking Dead” article that a significant number of staff is being shuffled away from the project.
Now that the #BlogsOfAugust challenge from Mike Elgan is over, I wanted to share my five key takeaways from that experience.
I’ve also included thoughts from other #BlogsOfAugust participants who shared their experiences on what surprised them the most about blogging on the ‘Plus.
The surprisingly fast pace at which you get followers. G+ is blooming right now! Daniel Montesinos
Recently, I’ve been spending a lot more time in Google+. It started when I researched the network for a client which resulted in my post on Google+ business pages. With the tie in with Google Authorship and the ability to post dofollow links, Google+ can be a powerful tool for SEO. However even if it wasn’t, I’m loving the conversations and interactions I’m getting in the ‘Plus. It’s so refreshingly free from hype and overt “buy this” marketing.
So during the month of August, I will be primarily blogging on Google+, along with many others that answered Mike Elgan’s #blogsofaugust challenge. Just in the 10 days I’ve been doing it, my circle count has tripled, I’ve met some cool new people and found a couple of great communities to join.
For people who blog on Blogger, it’s been an easy jump to blogging on Google+. However I did have to wrap my mind around it as I don’t think of interacting with a social network as “blogging”. However one thing that you see on Google+ and not on other networks such as Facebook is extensive, thoughtful posts that get a lot of commentary and interaction. While I’ve had some good conversations on this blog, it’s much easier to get that level of interaction on Google+ and the spam is nonexistent. Sad to say, most comments I get here are useless and add no value.
That doesn’t necessarily mean that I will stop blogging here on WebEnso, but for the month of August you likely won’t see much activity here, so come check out Google+ and I’ll report back in a few weeks how it went.
If you have a business, the short answer is yes. However a less clear decision is how much you should invest into a Google+ Business page. Businesses struggling with the demands of Twitter and Facebook, may not relish the idea of engaging with yet another social network. However Google+ has some clear SEO benefits that you shouldn’t ignore.
This week I want to share an excellent infographic from cmo.com entitled “The CMO’s Guide to Social Media Landscape”. The Infographic rates each social media network on its ability to deliver on customer communication, brand awareness, traffic and SEO benefits.
New to this year’s revision is Tumblr which it rated “Good” for SEO. I would love to get confirmation on that. Granted Tumblr posts and reblogs are a social signal to the search engines as Tweets would be, but I wonder if CMO’s claim that Tumblr is better rests solely on the fact that the links are followed (versus nofollow from Twitter). I’ve seen articles complaining about “Tumblr spam” and so you got to wonder if Google discounts links from Tumblr at least a little bit.
Other than my quibble with the rating on Tumblr’s SEO benefit – this is otherwise a great guide to the social media landscape. Each social media network has its own personality and each is good for different goals and this infographic captures the differentiation quite nicely.
If you saw a catchy title like “Four Things You Do To Kill Her Sex Drive” shared with you on Facebook wouldn’t you click on it? I admit that I did. And then I got this:
Note the “This app may post on your behalf, including articles you read and more.” Ummm, “post on my behalf”? No thank you.
Has Facebook lifted the 25 likes requirement that a page needs to get it’s own custom username? When I was messing around with the new Facebook timeline format I noticed a link to “choose username” in the admin panel. Not thinking it would work, because I only had 10 likes on the page, I went ahead and clicked on it anyway, and to my great surprise, I was able to get a username for the page!
Just to quickly recap. When you first create a Facebook fan page, your page will have an ugly looking URL with lots of numbers. The Facebook documentation continues to say that 25 people have to like your page before you can choose your custom username so that you can have a prettier URL for your page.
People have noticed that the 25 like requirement has been lifted before. But it always has been transient. Maybe the limit has been lowered? Or perhaps it is related to the rollout of the Facebook Timeline feature? Whatever it is, there is no guarantee it will last, so give it a try soon.
Have you published your page with the new Facebook Timeline format yet? The dates by when Facebook will automatically convert your pages are fast approaching:
I used to think of Facebook as a walled garden. Posts I made to my wall would only be seen by my Facebook friends. No more. Not everything shows up on your Facebook Timeline, but that embarrassing post you made 4 years ago? That you’ve forgotten about? It may be on your Timeline. If you haven’t already reviewed your Timeline (whether you have published it or not), you might want to. Mouse over the post (Facebook now calls posts “stories”) and click on the Pencil part of the button that pops up and you will get the option to “hide” it.
Have you heard about Pinterest? A virtual pinboard to organize and share the things you love, Pinterest is the latest social media craze. I can hear you groan now, “Another social media network? But I already Tweet, Facebook, Stumble, do Google Plus and LinkedIn!”
Surely you would think social media had reached a saturation point by now. Take Facebook who reportedly started shedding users in the US. Almost like a Starbucks on every corner, it seems that everyone that wants a Facebook account has one. Save China, Facebook has a significant presence in most of the world. The last frontier was Brazil, but Facebook is gaining users there despite an entrenched Orkut.There are several interesting things about Pinterest that bears looking at. Yes, the concept is not exactly new, it’s an image sharing site; but it has sidestepped (at least for now) the copyright issues that have bedeviled other social sites. When you “pin” an image from a web page that you find on the internet to one of your Pinterest boards, attribution to the original source is automatically included. While the permission of the original author is not part of the transaction, most site owners are fine with (and actively encourage) their work to be shared as long as they get credit. And if not? There is a way to “Report Pin”.