Google Plus is a great place to build a branded content channel as an extension of your website. Because Google owns YouTube, you can easily connect both your Google Plus and your YouTube accounts. This feature is also what makes it possible for you to stream live videos for free via Google Hangouts on Air. The community and circles settings allow you to share content only with the people you want to see it, so you have more flexibility than some of the other platforms where all your updates are public.
Similar to Facebook, the platform has both personal profile and business page accounts. The thing that is different from Facebook on Google Plus is your personal profile works better on Google Plus for personal branding. On Facebook, promoting your business too much can get you in “Facebook Jail.” However, on Google Plus, your name is your brand. I recommend using both your personal profile and your business page. Use your personal profile to connect with people and allow others to connect with you. Use your business page to share any branded content and ask people from your personal circles to follow your page for your latest content, news, events and other updates. Since you are free to talk shop on your personal profile, use it to network and take a genuine interest in what others are sharing on Google Plus and plus-1 (+1) their content, leave comments and also share in your circles.
Google Plus Design & Style Tips
Use the guide here to style your Google Plus business page. The sizes and dimensions for the Google Plus Cover Photo is 2120 pixels x 1192 pixels. As long as you keep the proportions (1240 x 700 works), you can use a smaller graphic that is at least 480 px x 270 px. However, it’s best to use the biggest size so your header image doesn’t look blurry or distorted on bigger screens.
Note: The sizes and dimensions on the following graphic are for Google Plus Business pages – not individual profiles. Although you can use the same cover photo for both, the Google Plus personal profile cover photo will cut off the left most part (about 1/3) of your graphic.
#BrandYourSocial Tip – What To Include in Your Google+ Business Page Cover Photo:
- Your website address
- Your logo and Business/Brand Name with tagline
- A Background photo/image that relates to your business
The key is to keep this one simple since the whole cover photo does not display on all devices.
#BrandYourSocial Tip – What To Include in Your Google+ Personal Profile Cover Photo:
- Your website address OR Your Google Plus Business Page URL
- A tagline that is professional, yet relatable
- A Background photo/image that expresses your interests, personality
Across the board, What NOT To Include In Cover Photos:
Links to other social media profiles. Here’s why: If people are on Google+, chances are they are there to connect with you on that platform first. Since that’s the case, let your cover art be relevant for that specific channel. If you want people to connect with you on another social media channel, use your updates and posts to ask those who have already connected with you on Google+ to follow you elsewhere. But not before. Build the connection first, then ask for more. Respect the Platform and the people there will return the favor.
Designing Your Google Plus Cover Photo for Best Display on All Devices
When you create your cover photo, you’ll want to put your text closer to the top of the page and leave about 250 pixels at the bottom of the image free of any text since your Profile Photo will shift to the bottom, center of the cover photo when displayed on a smartphone.
Google Plus Profile Tips
Your Google Plus business page has 2 sections that allow you to customize your business page information and settings. The About section is where you can add a link to your website, you address, contact number and details about your business. Aside from your website link, the most important part is your description. Write a brief business bio that includes:
- Who you are and what you do
- The #1 problem you solve for your clients or customers
- At least one thing that people may find interesting about you and the way you do business
Your profile should be about both you and your business and it should read as if you are speaking directly to the people you want to connect with. Google Plus is about community. Use your profile to speak to the people you want in your circles.
The second part of your Google Plus business page is in the settings. Here you can choose who sees your posts, set up notifications, customize your circles, and choose how you want photos, videos and hashtags to appear on your posts.
A complete Google Plus profile – your About section is filled out 100% and you have configured your page settings – is how you’ll connect with the right people and make sure your community sees your posts.