DIY Update: Introducing Google+ Pages and How To Set Up Your Band Page
Here’s another one for all you social networking addicts. Google+ rolled out their answer to Facebook Pages this week, Google+ Pages, allowing users to create separate pages for companies, products, etc. Bands are one of the available categories, and you can create your own band page now with a few simple steps.
First, like Facebook, you need to set up your personal account. Set this personal account up as yourself and not your band. The rules of engagement are slightly different for the two types of accounts and I always find it annoying when someone is using a personal account to represent a product essentially.
Once you’ve got a Google+ account for yourself, it’s only a few clicks to create a page for your band.
First, find the "Create A Google+ Page" link in the right sidebar (pictured below) and click that.
Then choose your category and sub-category. Choose the "Arts, Entertainments or Sports" category on the left. Then enter the other requested data and choose a sub-category of "Music Band" from the dropdown, as shown below.
So why should you care? Facebook’s dominance has been a welcome blessing in disguise. Adding another network to the mix only creates more work on the promotion front, and for little effect. And the feature set for Google+ pages is still pretty bare-bones right now.
In most cases, the compelling reason to join a network is to create a presence in a smaller ecosystem than the Internet at large. Once a network reaches a critical mass, it becomes useful to promote to that audience. But while Google+ may or may not have reached that critical mass yet, there are still some compelling reasons to join up now.
At 50 or 60 million users, Google+ is a far cry from Facebook’s 800 million users. But Google is also the dominant search engine, and not only are Google+ pages already showing up in their search results, but your Google+ page can be linked to your main web page and the “+1s” received from readers may soon influence the search results for both of these.
Placing the Google+ button on your own website can help get more of these +1 indicators that can help you out in the long run.
Early Adoption Has Benefits
While early adoption carries the risk of investing time in something that doesn’t pan out, there are two reasons that this gamble may also pay off in the case of Google+.
1. Smaller learning curve. While the feature set of Pages is still small, so is the learning curve. It’s fairly painless to set up a page for your band now. But as features get added, so does complexity. I recall going through the same thing with Facebook; learning how to set up and use Pages was much easier earlier on than if you started later, when they had rolled out more powerful features that were also more complex to administer (and I found myself trying to explain these features to family and friends getting onboard late in the game).
2. Building your network before you need it. The first rule of social networking is to build your network before you need it. Building a network doesn’t happen over night, so if you start now, you’ll have more people to make your next big announcement to. In addition, you’ll have the opportunity for a little more personal interactions during this growth period before your network explodes.
Building your network while learning the ropes really doesn’t have to take that much time. Ease into it slowly, and as your network grows and the service matures, the payoffs for promoting on Google+ will become greater as well.
The About page allows for HTML links in your description. I copied this right off of our About Us page and it kept the links intact, as you can see in the image of the Metal Underground Googe+ Page below.
Additionally, the right sidebar allows you to add more links to related sites, partners, etc. In search engine optimization terms, these are all high quality, “do-follow” links coming from a Google product.
Post Photos. They liven up your page and are generally very popular for sharing on social networks.
The “Ripples” feature is very powerful for looking at how your posts are shared. I don’t want to get too technical here, so you can learn more about Ripples here.
So what are you waiting for? Go create your band page on Google+ and add us while you’re there.
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