Welcome to the Kleber & Associates blog! Here’s the latest on Why We’re Joining Google+

I’ve watched Google+ very closely since it launched in July last year. I joined the new social network as soon as my invitation arrived. But like most people, I returned only sporadically to see if there was any activity worth noting and, to my disappointment, there usually wasn’t. So my personal Google+ experience, despite my high hopes, was mostly disappointing.

Then Google+ Brand pages were introduced, and the previously marketing-free platform was open, for all. But marketers have not taken to Google+ as quickly as they have to Facebook and Twitter. Many feel that it’s simply one more task to add on to their already full plates; one that doesn’t seem worthwhile because of the platform’s significantly smaller reach as compared to the more popular social networks.

Until today, Kleber & Associates shared this viewpoint. We quietly observed the platform from the sidelines waiting for something worthwhile to come along to give us incentive to join, to invest our valuable time in yet another social platform. We waited for our audience to migrate there; to show an indication that our efforts won’t be wasted.

But today our viewpoint changed. We are no longer satisfied with standing on the sidelines waiting for engagement and audience to increase. We joined Google+. And here’s why.
It’s Google.
At the end of the day, you can’t ignore the elephant in the room that is Google. The world’s most popular search engine still accounts for approximately 75% of all online search traffic. Google is working every day to deliver better search results for its users. And a large part of that now includes social search and semantics, driven by Google+.

Google’s AuthorRank is destined to play a large role in SEO. Where PageRank currently uses data about time on site, bounce rates, click throughs, and number of visits to determine the quality of content, AuthorRank will determine the quality of an author and use that ranking, in conjunction with PageRank when it’s returning search results.

Mike Arnesen outlined this list of potential factors that could be used to determine AuthorRank:

  • The average PageRank of an author’s content.
  • The average number of +1s and Google+ shares the author’s content receives.
  • The number of Google+ circles an author is in.
  • Reciprocal connections to other high AuthorRank authors.
  • The number and authority of sites an author’s content has been published to.
  • The engagement level of an author’s native Google+ content (i.e., posts to Google+).
  • The level of on-site engagement for an author’s content (i.e., comments and author’s responses to comments)
  • Outside authority indicators (e.g., the presence of a Wikipedia page).
  • YouTube subscribers and/or engagement on authored videos (speculation: multiple-attribution author markup for YouTube videos coming soon).
  • Any number of importance/authority metrics on social networks that Google deems trustworthy enough (Twitter, Quora, LinkedIn, SlideShare, etc.).
  • Real world authority indicators like published works on Google Books or Google Scholar.

Under this new model and ranking system, your Google+ page becomes the central hub of all your online activity. Every post you write, blog you contribute to, status you comment on, and video you produce become connected. Collectively, they can help or hurt the search engine ranking for all of your content.

No one knows exactly when AuthorRank will become a permanent factor in Google’s algorithm. Right now, some of its functionality is cropping up sporadically (think: author pictures displayed in search results). But, we don’t want to wait for the change to take place to take advantage of what Google is offering us.

What We’re Doing
That’s why, as of today, Kleber & Associates established and will continue to use our Google+ account. We are also working on making sure our website and all blog posts are properly set up and linked to our Google+ account. We’re using the AuthorSure WordPress Plugin to generate the appropriate rel=”author”, rel=”me”, and rel=”publisher” tags.

Most importantly, Kleber & Associates  is working every day to create high quality content that you want to read. That is, after all, the best SEO strategy possible: create great stuff that PEOPLE want to see, and they will see it.

Have questions about your brand’s Google+ strategy? Let’s chat and be sure to connect with us on Google+.

Kleber & Associates is an Atlanta-based integrated marketing communications agency serving the home and building products industry for 25 years. Visit the Kleber & Associates website for the latest news and information about marketing for home and building products for consumers, architects, builders, remodelers, designers and manufacturers. Through our marketing, advertising, public relations and digital marketing expertise — we build better brands that build a better home.