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Google+ tends to divide a lot of opinion – some social media marketers dismiss it altogether whilst others say your strategy can’t survive without it. Whatever your stance, it’s always a good idea to learn more about it, and at the end of the day, it’s another free social media channel that with the right tricks up your sleeve, really can help your strategy if you use it effectively.

To get you started, we’ve put together a simple guide to help you up your Google+ game, and make the most out of this interesting channel.

Name and custom URL

Google likes you to use your real name for your profile, rather than your business name. This can cause a few problems, particularly if there are a number of you that are highly involved in the social media of your business. You will need to come to a decision as to whose name will take centre stage in order to move forward. You also get to create a custom URL for your page which will be really beneficial in terms of SEO for the channel.

Your cover photo

As with any other social media channel, your cover photo should offer a clear representation of your business. Most businesses generally use a logo, which works really well as they’re clear, concise and get the message across effectively. You should use the same photo you’ve chosen on all of your channels, so that they portray a uniform message and help to build a sense of brand identity.

The tag line

Google+ allows you to add a tag line to your profile to introduce people to your business in a clear, snappy way. Therefore it’s important that you choose one that is simple and straight to the point, yet which also conveys an important message. You can view it as your manifesto or a statement of how you can help people. However, it can also be very helpful to include some keywords you’d like to target.

Your introduction

Your introduction on this page will help you go into a little more detail about what it is you do, and what you can offer your customers. It’s a good idea to add your unique selling point into this section; you need to identify what you can offer people that other, similar companies can’t, and what makes your brand special.

Connecting your other channels

You should connect your other social channels to your Google+ channel to help direct your followers to all of your different pages. This cross promotion is great for gaining a loyal fan base across all of your pages, and can also make it easier for you to keep an eye on the appearance of them, so you ensure they’re all uniform.