Well according to Google a vast number of Google+ users are still signing up every day(around 1.6 million according to Google).Hence, Google has decided to add some new features to the platform in 2017 to keep the audience engaged. Here are some of the new features that Google has rolled out in 2017.
Google+ is still very popular among the photographers with a number of photography communities using the platform regularly.Google+ has introduced Collections feature in 2015 specifically to group posts according to the specific category which can be shared among the specific audience. Images are a huge part of collections now & Google is already working on Google Photos platform. Hence to keep in sync Google+ has introduced “Image Zoom” &” Image Compression”features like Instagram to enhance the image quality with less bandwidth.
Google is now filtering out low-quality comments & spam just like Facebook, Instagram & Twitter to have a meaningful conversation on Google+. Google+ has been a target of spammers since it’s foundation due to its connection with Google search. Some SEO’s are constantly spamming the platform with irrelevant links to manipulate rankings.
“We’re making it easier to have good conversations by hiding lower quality comments on posts, so you can focus on the comments that matter most. If you’d like to see all the on a post, you can always click or tap “View more comments.”
Comment filtering will lead to a better user experience on Google+ like other platforms.
3.New Web Version
Google+ has made a transition in 2018 from classic Google+ with its brand new user interface on Jan.24,2017.
“With this latest round of updates, we believe the new Google+ is really your Google+ – designed around your suggestions, requests and needs. It also means it’s time to say goodbye to classic Google+ on the web, which we’ll be turning down on January 24.”
Google+ has reintroduced the Event feature which it has deprecated back in 2015.
According to Google –
“…beginning January 24th you’ll be able to create and join events on Google+ as you have in the past. Please note that Events will not be available for G Suite at this time.”
5. Google+ with My Business Can Boost Your Local SEO
If you are looking to feature your business in Google Local listings & Knowledge Graph then it is imperative that you have an official Google+ account with a verified My Business profile. Check out this comprehensive guide on Local SEO that you can use to be featured high in Local Search results.
Google + is still a useful social media platform for marketing for certain businesses & individuals contrary to some recent rumors you have heard of Google + being dead. But the trick is to play the game according to its rules. Google+ is much different from Facebook & Twitter & has its own high-tech niche audience. So, you simply cannot use the marketing strategy on Google+ as you implement in other platforms. But you can tweak your content marketing strategy in 2018 for Google + with the guidelines mentioned above you can surely get some value from Google+ in 2018.
Are you following a definitive Digital Marketing strategy for your business? Is Content Marketing the focal point of your Digital Marketing strategy? According to the latest stats, over 88 % of the B2B marketers use content marketing as an integral part of their Digital Marketing campaign. It’s fair to say content marketing has dominated all the other Digital Marketing avenues in 2017 & according to experts it will play an even greater role in converting visitors to clients in 2018! But in this era of information overload, you should be careful in crafting a niche content strategy for your client based on B2B or B2C. Let’s discuss how you can integrate content marketing into your Digital Marketing strategy in 2018.
1.Explore Different Content Types For Different Digital Platforms
If you are creating a content marketing strategy in 2018 then you should first analyze your potential audience in your niche & deduce what type of content is suitable for your niche audience. You can try experimenting different content types like creating informative blogs, infographics, webinars, podcasts etc. You have to perform a regular “Content Audit“ to deduce with what actually is working for your audience to create your own unique content strategy for your audience.
According to Smart Insights, these are the top digital marketing avenues in 2018:
Content Marketing is an integral part of SEO this day & you can complement your SEO campaign seamlessly with content marketing by integrating latent semantic keywords in your content which is one of the critical factors of Google Hummingbird. If you want to promote your business in a specific location you can create location specific content targeting the demographics in that location which will expedite your Local SEO.
Quality content can help you to generate more backlinks for SEO which can improve your ranking in SERP.
3.Change Your Voice
Content writers should be able to change their writing style frequently based on industry & audience as content formats which is generating a huge traction for a specific industry may not go well with other niches.You should be fluid enough to write according to the specific industry based on their target audience.
4.Always Look Out For New Ideas
The Web is flooded with millions of contents published every day so in order to stand out, you should give your audience something fresh to get the maximum engagement.You can easily get some interesting & trending ideas just by listening to audiences on various social media platforms & other media channels like television & print. In this way, you can keep a track on untapped contents which can go viral in the future. Here is an interesting example where folks from “Positive Health Wellness“ have written a fresh post on how technology is benefiting people countering the popular view that technology is bad for health.
5. Focus On Creating Value For Your Audience
Before writing a new content you should do a self-audit & ask yourself why your audience will read your post & what value they will get from your post. You should only proceed if your content is fulfilling a need for your audience or there is a high probability that your content will go unnoticed in this sea of content. You should be careful to not to just copy your competitors but you have to add some unique value to your content to stand out from the rest.
This is a common mistake most bloggers. In order to maintain a minimum word limit, they try to fluff their content with irrelevant topics & images & distract from the original topic. So, it’s very important to maintain the consistency & to stay “on-topic” throughout the post.
7.Distribute Your Content Smartly
Writing a great content is only the half job done. You have to market your content smartly to your niche audience through the most engaging social media channels where your audience hangs out. According to Smart Insights stats, Facebook remains the most popular content distribution channel. Instagram comes second & is the fastest growing network in history. It beats Facebook in terms of social media engagement. Twitter seems to be on the decline with the advent of What’s App, We Chat & Instagram. Live streaming channels like Periscope are also gaining popularity. You can leverage these platforms to promote your content through video conferencing.
You should try to leverage your contents which have gone viral in the past. These contents should be updated, tweaked & re-structured for your old & also new audience by adding some new information regarding your industry. You can try to convert the old textual content into an awesome infographic or can also make a video presentation with the updated contents which will ensure that your old audience will remain engaged with your blog & will keep coming back.
9.Optimize Your Content For Mobile
According to Smart Insights users are consuming most of the content from mobile devices. As per, the report Mobile Digital Media time in the US is around 51% whereas Desktop Digital Media Time is 42 %. People spend around 3 hours a day on smartphones or tablets consuming different contents like music, videos, news, apps, social media etc. Hence, you should always optimize your content for mobile to reach out to more audience.
Visual content has become an integral element of any post in 2018 & will be even more crucial in 2018 for your content marketing strategy. You should be focusing on creating more informative visual content like infographics, infographics, charts, memes, videos etc. to increase the user experience & audience engagement.Textual content has reached a point of saturation & so it will very hard to keep the audience engaged with your content unless you are integrating some relevant & interesting visual contents.
11. Have A Clear Cut Goal
Every content you are producing must have a clear-cut purpose. There should be a clear Call-To-Action on your landing pages to entice the readers to the next step into your marketing funnel whether to opt for your email subscription, e-book download or to buy your services or products.
Content Auditing is a very crucial factor in content marketing to analyze the ROI on your content marketing effort from which you can easily discover your most valuable contents that are generating the maximum traffic, engagement & conversion. This data will help you to plan your content marketing strategy more precisely to get maximum ROI on your content marketing campaign.
Look at this awesome infographic from Search Engine Journal to understand how you can diversify your content in the following Digital Marketing avenues in 2018 to increase your traffic, leads & sales.
Content Marketing is now the backbone of any Digital Marketing campaign. It has been a game changer for many businesses but many businesses have failed to capitalize on it due to a lack of clarity in their Content Marketing campaigns. I hope my post helps you to understand the nuances of Content Marketing to create a meticulous strategy for your next online marketing campaigns.
Your customers may not be very interested in your troubles. What they’re actually interested in are how you can help with their troubles—how your products or services can create solutions to whatever hurdles they’re facing.
How do you tell them that you can do that? By sharing anecdotes—stories, humorous or serious—about what you’ve done for other people. Your honesty, as long as it feels authentic, can be a great identifier for people. The stories don’t always have to be successful; they can be failures, too. The point is that you are sharing and they can find a way to fit into your narrative.
Use Anecdote To Tell Your Customers A Story
Share stories about the pain points of your customers & how you have helped them to overcome it. The first step is to share an anecdote about having been in a similar situation, one your potential customers can relate to. In this way, you can empathize with your clients’ situation & can convince them that you can solve their problem with your skills as you have successfully done for similar clients in similar situations before.
Types Of Stories:
Be Transparent & Tell Customers About Your Hurdles
If you are always claiming to be the best company in the world who don’t fail ever then you are probably misleading your customers. Hence, it is wise to be transparent & tell your audience about your failures & how you have bounced back fit. It can lead to a lot of disappointment and trouble if and when things don’t go as planned. It’s important for your customers to know how you’ll respond when that happens, and what you’ll do to make it right. You can mention such experience where things didn’t work out the way for your clients as it is supposed to be & how you counter-acted in that situation to solve the problem & attain the end goal of your clients eventually & helped them to become a “Hero” by resolving the conflict they were facing in their journey. This is what is known as “The Hero’s Journey” as described beautifully by world-renowned storyteller Kylie Slavik on her blog.
Be Specific, Be Focused (Only Say What’s Important)
You should be absolutely clear about the value proposition of your products & services & avoid any extraneous information that can confuse the clients.
You should try to focus on the exact benefits that a client could get from your product rather than listing all the features of your product most of which are of no use to your potential customers. Hence, to convey you should design & convey the actual benefits in a concise manner that a client can get after purchasing your product.
So, next time when you are in a dilemma about writing a content to strike a chord with your audience for your campaigns, put your literary side to work. Go share some anecdotes the ones your customers can relate to, flaunt your failures in a cool way & tell them how you have eventually overcome them. Last but not the least write specific & focused white papers & blog posts mentioning the real benefits that your clients can get from your product.
If you are running a local brick & mortar business then you are probably targeting clients in your locality or nearby areas in your city. But how will you tell search engines about exactly where your business is located in order to provide the information to your local clients. If you are looking to target a specific audience in a specific location then optimizing your business on Google for “Local Search in 2018” is very essential.
Let’s discuss some very effective ways you can easily optimize your local business to be discovered by your local clients.
Researching Local Keywords
With local search, the foremost thing you have to do is to perform a thorough Keyword research to add high volume local Geo-Specific Keywords along with your Industry-Specific Keywords like “Real Estate Companies In LA”, “car rentals in CA”, “Digital Marketing Companies In Seattle” etc.
On-Site Local Optimization:
Optimize Your Page’s Title
The Title Tag of your landing page should be optimized with the specific location in mind you are trying to optimize your business as it will the first thing to appear in the SERP & is very important to include your location in your Title Tag for Local Optimization.
Optimize Meta Description Attribute
Your Meta Description should include your Geo-Location along with niche keywords & contact number as Google might use it in the snippet in its SERP.
Have a Contact Us Page with Full Name, Address & Phone Number(NAP)
Contact Us page should have the original name, address & phone number of each location. You should ensure that NAP elements are consistent throughout the website.
Include Name, Address & Phone Number(NAP) In The Footer
Placing Name, Address & Phone Number(NAP) of your business on every page of your website will boost your local relevancy when crawled by bots but only ensure that you are using text not images.If you have multiple locations then make sure to list all the locations in the footer.
Optimize H1 Header Tag With Specific Location
Don’t forget to include your specific location city or state in H1 Header Tag to boost your local relevancy.
Include Your Location In Your Content
You should have a specific location focused content marketing strategy for Local SEO. You should mention your specific location in your content if you are aiming to optimize your business for “Local Search”. If you have multiple locations then creating multiple pages with each location & keyword combo will be a good idea.
Embed Google Map In Your Site
You can embed Google Map via several plug-ins on your website to let Google know where exactly you are located in order get your business on “Local Map ” results.
Include Location In ALT Text For Images
Since search engine, bots cannot read images & can only see ALT Text in images you can use your location in the ALT Text to optimize your page for local results.
Place Your Targeted Location, City, State In URL
You can leverage your URL structure by including specific locations & city to enhance your ranking in “Local Search”.
Integrate Client Feedback about Your Product & Services In Your Landing Pages
Use feedback from local clients from the cities about your products & services to build credibility among your local clients.
Offer City Specific Special Offers For Your Products & Services
Offering city specific offers can help search engines to differentiate one location from another
Arrange City Specific Events For Launching Your Products & Blog About Them
If you can organize city-specific events & get them to cover by local press & media then you can get a huge traction by highlighting them in your blog
This is the very first thing you should do optimize your site for local search.Just visit My Business fill all the details & get your business Verified by Google.
Get Reviews from Your Customers
Request your customers to leave a Review your business on Google on your profile & respond to them accurately to show off your customer service skills & can create opportunities to bring in more clients.
Build Citations By Listing Your Business On Local Search Directories
Try to enlist your business in all the leading local search directories like Yelp, Foursquare, Hotfrog which can give tremendous visibility to your brand & will eventually help to boost your ranking in “Local Search”.
Let’s look at this study from Moz on major Ranking Factors for Local SEO in 2018.
Local SEO is a crucial part of your marketing strategy if you have a brick & mortar business. It has been seen that 80% of local customers visit a store within 1 day of searching. Hence, having a prominent local presence on Google Map & Google Snack Pack can drastically improve the footfalls in your store. Hope you can now use these strategies to up your Local SEO game in 2018.