This week in my Food Bloggers Community there were some very good questions about posting and all the bits and pieces associated with Google Plus posts, including posting etiquette. I had planned this post for a little later in the series but with all the questions I’ve had this week, it seems more important than the other elements of G+ that I will be covering in this series.
Hopefully everyone has gone through last weeks post and implemented changes to their profile, making it more Google friendly. If you missed my last post, just click on this link The Bloggers Guide to Using Google Plus – Part One. Your profile is the first and most important step to being successful on G+.
The first rule you need to remember about posting on Google+ is that “Good Content is Good Content even if it isn’t Your Content”. On Google Plus sharing someone else’s Good Content can gain you as many followers as your own Good Content can, and provides you with material to share in between your own posts.
The next major point you need to know is all of your old posts are new again on Google Plus, and will be again in another year and every year after that as your following increases and the number of people joining Google Plus increases. Now that doesn’t mean that you should post 2 or 3 of your posts every day, that would be considered spamming your following and will get you uncircled and blocked by serious plussers.
“Serious plussers devour Good Content but they will drop you like a rock if they think all your posting is your own content”
So interweave your current posts with some of your best older posts. And remember, your following is growing everyday and will continue to grow as long as you continue to post Good Content at an acceptable rate. This is where the quality over quantity comes into play. Posts your Good Content on a consistent basis, whether it be 3, 4, 5 times a week, just be as consistent as possible, Your other posts throughout the day, and on days you don’t post your content should be the content of other plussers.
Should I post my content more than once? – the answer to that is unequivocally no. If you post Good Content, it will be reshared and you won’t need to repost it again. If it’s not good content, or you don’t have enough followers to get it reshared on a regular basis, it won’t matter how many times you reshare it the results will be the same and you’ll run the risk of losing some of your followers from your over sharing of your own work. This is the hardest point for new plussers to come to terms with, because we all want to succeed and have our content shared every time we post. Google Plus takes time like anything worthwhile, and you’ll need to do the groundwork for 3-6 months before you see any real results. You’re investing in your future and the future is coming faster than most people realize.
How should I post? – Since I first joined G+, I’ve been telling everyone to post a large image with a link, and during that there was always a mixed opinion on that subject as many of the SEO experts thought that you got more link juice from posting a thumbnail link. The problem with their reasoning was that most of those SEO experts weren’t photo driven bloggers, and they couldn’t see the value of posting a large image, because there posts contained stock image’s or graphics, not the labor intensive mouth-watering drool worthy Food Porn that was our calling card.
“Google Plus is a photo driven social media and on G+ a picture is worth 10,000 words”
Well a few weeks ago all that changed and the SEO experts finally agreed that posting a large image with a link did more in terms of SEO than the thumbnail link. Using a large image is going to give you the interaction and engagement that a thumbnail will not, it’s not about the image it’s about what the image can do for you!
So that means that when you post, it should be the best image you have for that post, with a lead in blurb about the post. Remember that you need to engage with your readers to get them to want to follow you, so be creative, ask questions or be funny in your opening statement. Use highlights to help with your statement.
*On either side of the Post* will make it bold : _On either side of the Post_ will make it Italic: -
on either side of the post- will make it a strike through.
*Using a Horizontal image instead of a vertical image also gives you the opportunity to cover the full stream with your image.
*Don’t Forget to use Hashtags, But keep the number down to 3 or 4 of the most relevant.
How should I share my post? – this is a point that so many plussers seem to be confused about. When you share your post it should be shared to Public and only to public. I hear so many of my friends asking why they have circles if they can’t share to them. That’s not really what your circles are for (we’ll get into that on another post). Sharing to public gives you the greatest opportunity for exposure and to let plussers that are not already in your circles have access to your post. I sometimes find amazing images that I would love to share, but the original has not been shared to public, so I can’t reshare it because I would only be able to share it to my extended circles and I would be sending them all notification. And that’s something I don’t want to do. If I share to circles and send out notification just to share my blog post, I’ll be muted and possibly uncircled.
“You only share to circles if its a life event, or incredibly important information”
Of course the only you can do worse than sending sharing your posts to your circles is to click on the little send email box. That can get you uncircled, and blocked. Again you save that function for very important information only.
This all goes back to the premise that if you post Good Content and Great Images your post will be re-shared, and commented on which will help put your post in front of more people and new people.
How do I decide which post to share? – sharing someone’s post is the kindest thing you can do for someone. By sharing a post you’re sharing it with those plussers that have you in there circles giving the shared post exposure to people that may not have them in circles. (can you say new followers?) But deciding which post to share is as important as sharing your own post. You want to find the best image or post that you can to re share. If you share a post that receives no interaction you’re not helping the person you shared and more importantly you’re hurting yourself. Plussers need to know they can count on you for Good Content!
“When you share a post, always add your own content at the top of the share with a reference to the plusser that originally shared the post, using their +name”
Sharing a thumbnail post is not a good idea, thumbnail posts don’t get much action. Another really bad idea I see from time to time is plussers posting for someone else. If a blogger doesn’t care enough to post their own material, why would you ?
Every Time you share a post, mention someone by name, and even +1 you’re giving away a little bit of your juice. If you get nothing back in return you’re hurting yourself. Engaging with Google+ Influencers and even plussers with a greater following will help you more than engaging with plussers at with the same or less followers than you. Interactions from Influencers will add a proportionately greater amount of juice to you and/or your post, than someone at the same level or with less followers. Now that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t support your friends, it just means you need to spend your time and your juice wisely. Sharing posts has to be a win-win situation for both of you.
Sharing a post that you know will get reshared helps both of you. You get the benefit of all the +1′s , and interactions through comments. While you get credit for the re shares, they also go back to the original post, so the person you shared not only gets exposure to new plussers but the all the shares of their post that you received. That’s a Win-Win.
Should I use Autopost – If you autopost a thumbnail post, its the kiss of death and only your very close friends will even acknowledge it. Plussers can tell the difference. If your post doesn’t have a little blurb leading it in they know its either an autopost or someone that didn’t care enough to spend the time engaging with them with additional text leading in the post. Auto posting does not work well on Google Plus.
How do I know who reshared my post? – the easiest way to find out who re shared your post is to click on the little arrow in the top right hand corner of your post, and go down to Ripples on the drop down menu. Click on Ripples and it will show you who actually re shared your posts to public. Some people either reshare it privately (which does you no good) so they can save it for themselves or they don’t know how to properly re share a post. The public shares show up in circles showing where the additional shares came from. You can and should click on the each post that was shared and thank the person that shared your post, that’s being a good plusser. And when you comment on the shared post thanking them, it drives your shared post back to the top of the stream.
*Ripples will not show up in the drop down menu unless the post has been shared
Did you know that if you click on the image in your post, it opens the image up and you see all the comments. What you also see on the sidebar is photo details. If you click on photo details it will give all the info about the image shared by the camera, but more importantly at the bottom of the details is the number of times your image has been viewed. Check it out you might be surprised to see how many times your post has actually been seen.
The only other part of this posting puzzle is how you interact with posts. I’ve mentioned that the best thing you can do is share someone’s post, the second best thing is to comment on their post (which drives the post back to the top of the stream) if you mention their +name in the comment, good plussers will thank you with your +name. +1′s have while third on the list have become more important because now the posts you +1 will show up in your followers stream, this is huge. Now by +1 a post you’re in essence sharing it with your readers on G+.
**one new add on to this post is when sharing your post Do Not include any other links, such as Pinterest links on that post. That has been determined to be a bad thing. Read more about this at Dustin W. Stout Blog Dustn.tv
Well my friends this post turned out to be a lot longer than anticipated, and I hope I didn’t leave anything out. If I did and you have specific questions please leave them for me in the comments.
Thanks for stopping by for the second part of my Bloggers Guide to Using Google Plus.