Author Archives: Jimmie Lanley

100 Ways to Improve Your Google Plus Experience • Jimmie Lanley
100 Ways to Improve Your Google Plus Experience

If Google Plus leaves you feeling a little blah, you probably need to try some of these experience boosters! I’ve listed one hundred different actions you can take. Some are one-time changes. Others are more complicated or need to be done periodically. But they all will help you discover more of what G+ has to offer and, better yet, help other G+ users discover you. Plunge in and make the most of the social layer of Google!

Profile Perks

1. update your profile image to a friendly, recent head shot

2. beef up the story section of your profile with deep links to your site

3. check your hovercard and shorten your tagline to 40 characters so it all fits

4. view your profile as public to see what others see

5. format the story section of your profile with the available tools — bold, italics, hyperlinks, and bulleted lists

6. include contact information on your profile and allow people to send you messages via your profile (in settings)

7. display communities relevant to your niche on your profile

8. tick the current box for employment and education to make those fields show up on your hovercard

9. in the work section of your profile, list multiple skills

10. upload a custom cover image (min. 480 x 270) instead of using one of the default options

Community Clues

11. share to communities with selective discretion

12. engage in communities by answering questions and having conversations

13. start your own niche community and promote it outside of G+

14. start a private community where you engage with peers and experiment with G+ functions

15. use a private community (in which you are the only member) to bookmark G+ posts by resharing posts to the community

16. turn notifications off or on for communities

17. adjust the settings for individual communities to adjust the volume of content in your home stream

18. if you manage a G+ page, you can join communities and interact in them as that page

Posting Perfection

19. use a poll to promote engagement

20. tag authors of the content you share

21. tag and hat tip when you are sharing something you saw on someone else’s post

22. use bold (* before and after text) to create a headline for your G+ post

23. use italics (_ before and after text) to create a subheading below your headline

24. use the • symbol (Alt 7) to create a bulleted list

25. use other interesting symbols to draw the eye to important parts of your post (Alt 16, Alt 4, Alt 26, and Alt 22, for example)

26. always post public

27. never tick the also send email box when sharing

28. vary the ways you share — links, videos, images, and text

29. share an entire photo album

30. use the G+ photo editing tools and filters on your images

31. use the 80-20 rule when sharing— 80% content from others; 20% your own content

32. reshare great posts from others, tag them, and provide a personal introduction

33. don’t share link litter (links without any context or introduction)

34. add one to four relevant hashtags at the end of a post

35. look at the related hashtags in the explore tool and start using new hashtags in your own posts

36. use autoawesome to make cool animations

37. don’t use the same thing you posted on Facebook or Twitter on G+

38. share an image optimized for Pinterest on G+; it works there too!

39. use Do Share Chrome extension to schedule posts to your G+ profile

40. when posting a link, scroll through the available images with the arrows and choose the best one

Plus Moxie, a G+ course for bloggers

Cross Promotion Creativity

41. include a link to a Pinterest board where the share is already pinned

42. tweet your G+ posts

43. pin your G+ posts with videos or images

44. add a G+ badge to your site

45. share great hangouts on Twitter and tag the host and panelists

46. add all your social media profiles to the links section of your G+ profile

47. invite readers of your email newsletter to your G+ hangouts

48. include a pin it for later link on your shares

Conversation Cues

49. install Replies and more for G+ Chrome extension so it’s easier to reply with tagging

50. set a time for 15 minutes each day and engage on other people’s posts

51. search hashtags relevant to your niche to find interesting content and people to engage with

52. use Google Plus keyboard shortcuts (hotkeys) such as typing / to get to the search box

53. don’t be afraid to mute people who annoy you with notifications

54. reserve blocking for real creeps

55. on the home page, click more to choose a single column or multiple column layout

46. tag people you respond to

Circle Strategies

57. stalk your favorite people by adding them to a circle for which you turn on notifications; be first to +1 and comment on their content

58. browse the posts from individual circles instead of your full home stream

59. adjust the settings for a circle stream to show more, standard, or fewer posts

60. install (affiliate link) Circloscope and use the tool to manage your followers

61. don’t stress when “weird” people circle you

62. create a niche circle of awesome people and share it to your stream (include yourself!) with an introduction and hashtag #sharedcircle

63. look for the two arrows on someone’s profile to see circling is mutual (you circle them, and they circle you)

64. order your circles (by dragging and dropping) so that your favorites show up at the top of your home stream

Plus Moxie, a G+ course for bloggers

Honing the Habit

65. install the G+ app on your smartphone and tablet and browse G+ instead of Facebook or Twitter

66. add G+ to your daily social media routine or social media editorial calendar

67. use Buffer to post to any G+ pages you manage

68. use the Everypost app to post to multiple platforms at once, including your G+ profile

69. follow boards devoted to G+ on Pinterest

70. become familiar with G+ Help and search it for answers when you are confused

71. install the G+ button on your browser and use it generously across the web

72. add a bookmark to G+ on your browser bookmark bar right beside another bookmark you use every day

Hangout Helps

73. participate in live hangouts by asking questions and providing positive feedback to the panelists on the event page

74. circle the people who attend a live hangout with you

75. host your own regular hangouts where you demonstrate your expertise

76. before you hold a hangout, have a practice session

77. join (affiliate link) Ronnie Bincer’s Hangout Mastery group

78. learn event page etiquette

79. create video content for your YouTube channel with hangouts on air

80. after a live event, reshare a hangout on air event page with your commentary; tag the host and panelists

81. use your hangout on air videos for content marketing purposes

82. make a hangouts headquarters on your site so your audience can easily find your hangout schedule and past shows

83. selectively message the guests of your event with a special announcement

84. convert your hangouts into a podcast

85. forget Skype and use hangouts for your video conferencing

Settings Success

Become familiar with your settings so you can customize G+ to suit you.

86. select which tabs you want visible to visitors: photos, YouTube, +1s, reviews

87. allow G+ to automatically add hashtags to your posts

88. turn off image auto enhance if you notice white backgrounds appearing gray

89. adjust your notifications to stop the emails or turn them on if you need the reminders

Extra Credit

90. study the ripples of a popular post

91. see how much traffic G+ is sending to your site with Google Analytics (Acquisition → Social → Network Referrals)

92. never make circling (or any G+ action) a requirement for a contest (see terms of service)

93. never hold a contests, sweepstakes, or other such promotion directly on G+ (see terms of service)

94. connect your account to CircleCount and look at your stats

95. create a custom overlay for your hangouts on air (instead of the basic lower thirds)

96. keep data from your hangouts on air and take that to sponsors with the aim of monetizin

97. use Plus My Reach to analyze data from your hangouts on air

98. use the comment tracker during a live hangout on air to engage with your audience

99. add your hangout appearances on other people’s channels to your own YouTube playlists

100. Take the Plus Moxie Google Plus Course for bloggers.

Plus Moxie, a G+ course for bloggers

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Sales Page Critique: And the Word Became Flesh

As a perk to the bloggers in my network, I offered a short sales page critique of their digital products such as this one for Kathy’s product And the Word Became Flesh. Watching them should help you identify principles you can apply to your own sales pages.

The main points of my screencast critique are outlined below the video.

Kathy’s landing page is really good, so I didn’t have a lot of suggested changes. Be sure to watch her intro video for her product. But here are the suggestions I did offer.

Suggestions for improving this sales page to increase conversions

1. Include a buy button above the fold or at least closer to the top.

2. Make sure the buy button(s) include all available formats of the book.

3. Add cover and front matter to your sample.

4. Add the link to your sales page in your intro video on YouTube. Possibly add a clickable link (via annotations) directly on your video.

5. Use code to remove related videos from showing at the end of yours on the landing page. Directions are here.

6. Add a few testimonials or quotes from readers.

Sales page critiques are just one thing I do in a site and social media assessment package.




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Sales Page Critique: Intentional Marriage

As a perk to the bloggers in my network, I offered a very short sales page critique of their digital products. This is just one of many critiques. Watching them should help you identify principles you can apply to your own sales pages.

Crystal’s product is Intentional Marriage . The main points of my screencast critique are outlined below the video.

Suggestions for improving this sales page to increase conversions

1. Add your book’s tagline to the title of the page (good for SEO).

2. Increase size of book image.

3. Change page layout to no sidebar, full width page.

4. Jump right into the sales copy and delete the introduction.

5. Focus on benefits to the wife who buys your book.

6. Use an image for your sample download.

7. Include your cover and front matter in your sample.

8. Use a larger buy button and add one much farther up on the page.

9. Optimize images for Pinterest descriptions.

10. Use a short video introduction of the ebook.

11. Show the formats of the book visually.

Sales page critiques are just one thing I do in a site and social media assessment package.

Unlink images from the image files.

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Confessions of a Google Plus Profile Snob

I admit it. I’m a Google Plus profile snob.

I take a look at someone’s avatar, hover card, and profile to make a very quick decision about circling or not. I am likely misjudging and therefore losing out on following some amazing people. But the fact is my time is limited. I can’t spend a lot of effort researching people. I take a look and make a decision. And I suspect that many plussers are just like me.

Here are things that turn me off when it comes to following someone.

1. Avatar

I am not prone to intently look at avatars that are not smiling human faces, looking directly at the camera. I tend to mentally dismiss these avatars

  • stuffed animals
  • flowers
  • dogs, goats, cats, rodents, snakes (Yes, I’ve seen all of those animals on G+ as avatars.)
  • logos
  • inanimate objects
  • cartoon characters
  • men without shirts or women showing cleavage
  • people looking aloof or wearing sunglasses
  • couples or groups of people

2. Hover Card

If the cover image is the default Google color swirls, I have an automatic prejudice. I’ve seen it so many times; it just doesn’t stand out to be noticed. If the hover card has no additional details besides a name, I tend to move on without clicking over.

3. Profile

By default, the hover card click takes you to a person’s posts. If I see three or more identical posts (normally to communities), it signals spam to my brain. If there are loads of silly gifs, memes, inspirational images/quotes, and map check-ins, I tune out. If all the shares come from the same domain and have no interaction on them, I get bored.

If the content looks promising, I usually switch to the about tab to learn a bit more. If an about section is vague, sparse, or filled with platitudes, my eyes gloss over and I am clicking back.

That’s my confession. It may make me sound like a very shallow person to evaluate a plusser in this way, but it’s my typical mental process. And I suspect that I’m not alone in this snobbery.

Moral of the story? Get your profile and hover card beefed up so you are attracting followers.

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