Google+ For Writers and Self-Publishers, Redux

Are you still wondering what to do with Google+? The recent launch of business pages probably hasn’t helped your confusion any. But as I said in my last post about Google+ I wouldn’t bet against Google, especially since they seem to have thrown so much into this launch. Since that last post they have also retired a number of products such as Google Wave and Google Buzz that would probably have taken some of the attention away from Plus.

Getting into Google+ Pages

When business pages came out I immediately went and created a page for my professional writing site and for each of my main blogs even though I couldn’t immediately see how I was going to use them. Still, I thought it was better for me to have them than for someone else to grab them.A couple weeks on, I think that business pages represent an opportunity for authors. Because why not create a business page for your self-published e-book?

There are several features of Google+ that make it ideal for doing this. Okay,  so you can’t have a sexy page title (just strings of numbers) but you can have a page that will be rapidly indexed by Google’s search engine and that has an excellent search engine optimised description of your book. (And if you really want a proper page name you can use Gplus.to or a similar site to create a pretty shortcut.)

Filling Out the Photo Strip

As with personal G+ profiles, there’s a photo strip across the top where you can have images from your book:  front cover, back cover, author photo and maybe a couple of reviews. In the text part of the profile you can include ‘about the author’ info,  links to your website and other online profiles. Then keep both your about page and your business page updated with excerpts from your new projects.

One of the great things about Google+ is its audience. Sure there may not be quite as many people as they are on Facebook but my experience shows that there is a huge community of writers, bloggers and book readers out there and many of them are willing to take part in discussions about your book and to share anything that you deem worth sharing.

The sharing part is a biggie. When you have set up a page for your book, circle all the writers you know and ask for recommendations for others that you can circle. Then start talking to people. Like Facebook, Google+ lets you post as your page, reinforcing your brand with each interaction.

Make Like Patrick Stewart and Engage

All you have to do to get people circling you and talking to you is to be active and engaged. Remember, it’s not all about you. Share interesting things that affect the writing and publishing business (like the posts from this blog for example) that your readers will find interesting. The more you share and the more you post original content (similar to the way you do on your blog) the more people will come to see you as a good source of information. Of course that goes for any social media or social networking site but as this is brand-new there’s still a great opportunity for you to get there before many others.

I plan to set up a Google+ page for my most successful ebook  (the shell is here) and for any others that I publish after that. I’ll let you know how it goes. Have you started using Google+ yet either with a personal or business account? What issues have you faced?

Image: AJC1

Check out my series on self-publishing:

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About Sharon.H

Sharon Hurley Hall is a professional writer and blogger. Her career has spanned more than 25 years, including stints as a journalist, academic writer and ghost writer. Connect with Sharon on her website or Google+.

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23 Responses to “Google+ For Writers and Self-Publishers, Redux”

  1. This blog is really useful for writers. Writers should take the benefit from this.
    Waxing recently posted..Hair Removal BlogMy Profile

  2. It is very helpful and I can gain clients now by just posting my skills in google+. I realize how much the value of this social media site. Thanks for sharing.
    Mark Spencer recently posted..How to make money in forexMy Profile

  3. Hi Sharon,

    I really like this post because it is very helpful and I can gain clients now by just posting my skills in google+. I realize how much the value of this social media site. Thanks for sharing.

  4. great blog…i cant fault Google+ with my business page. Google+ never fails to surprise me and helps soooo much with my business marketing strategies.

  5. Hi Sharon! Great information you’ve taken in this post. Many haven’t tried using Google+ yet. Thanks to you for sharing this good news!
    Francoise recently posted..Some Arowana Diseases and TreatmentsMy Profile

  6. Just like any other website or blog, which seeks to apply and get approval from Google Adsense, you need to post more quality answers and content. The best thing you can do is improve your post quality and number. Try answering more questions and provide more detailed answers. Once you are confident your application will be approved, you can apply again.
    Margurite recently posted..Realistic pencil portrait masteryMy Profile

  7. I have really enjoyed Google+. It benefited me a lot especially on driving that much traffic on my site. I will take a look at Google+ Pages right away and see what benefits I can get from it. Thanks for this post. Cheers!

  8. I know Google + is one of those I have to tackle! I have not even looked at Google Pages! But when I do (someday) finish my book, this may be a great option – thanks for the post!
    Julie recently posted..Vote for Your Favorite Writing BlogMy Profile

  9. I’ve already tried creating my business page in Google+ and it works pretty well for me especially that I have put up my circles very well. Google+ never failed to surprise me and never did disappoint me in my business marketing strategies.
    Extreme John recently posted..Business Blitz: Stuck in Your Tracks? How to Get Unstuck TodayMy Profile

  10. I have thought about Google Plus ever since it first came out. I just never got around to it, and I’m not sure if I can keep up with managing another profile page or site. The other thing is I keep reading that Google Plus seems to be popular with webmasters, technology, and guru types. I hear it is not so popular with regular types of users I guess you might call them. So I have kind of been not so tuned into it yet. But for free and another way to promote yourself, site, products or services why not.
    Ray recently posted..Brand WordPress Login & Registration with your LogoMy Profile

    • I think that if people saw the great photo sharing (and photo display) and the ease of communicating with different groups, they would love it, Ray – or maybe that’s just me :) For people who are heavily invested in Facebook, the issue is moving to a platform where their friends aren’t, which is a hard sell. If I could get all my friends on Google+ I’d have no reason to use Facebook.
      Sharon Hurley Hall recently posted..Testimonial – Editorial ServicesMy Profile

  11. Brilliant article bro. This unique is just a totally nicely structured posting, just the important information I was hunting regarding. Cheers

  12. Sorry, I posted my comment in the wrong box, I meant to write it here!

    I hadn’t realized Google+ had added business pages! Thanks Sharon for this useful advice – shall look into it asap. Your posts are always so enlightening, a real pleasure to read.

    I also find your comment intriguing: you say “pages run the risk of bringing the same fragmentation as on Facebook”. Would you care to expand on that? You mean that a page in addition to a profile page is distracting? I would tend to agree with that. In fact, the whole juxtaposition between Facebook and Google+ is something that at this point has me really worried: how many of the people we as writes would wish to connect with are on Facebook, how many on Google+ and are they the same people? If so, why bother doing both? Why not focus on one platform and forget th other? Because it’s hard to be equally present and connecting and connectable on both!
    Claude Nougat recently posted..Self-Published Books: the Digital Age Slush Pile?My Profile

  13. Believe it or not, it was simpler before the advent of business pages. For those who engage both personally and professionally, pages run the risk of bringing the same fragmentation as on Facebook. That said, there are real positives to the interaction there.
    Sharon Hurley Hall recently posted..Why You Should Hire Me to Write Your ResumeMy Profile

  14. Thanks for this! I’m trying to figure out how to approach segmenting our clients with Google plus. The whole point of Google plus is the segmenting (which is awesome so my bar buddies aren’t seen by my sunday school kids) but then it makes it *that* much harder to expand your reach.

    Okay, vent over. This post helps though – I will definitely add this to the mix when our book is ready to go. Thanks :)
    Amie Marse recently posted..The Importance of RSS for Content Writing ManagementMy Profile

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