Tuesday, August 20, 2013

#Wwow - Why Authors Should Use Google Plus

Last week I gave a tutorial on how to use Google Plus. This week I will focus on the WHY. 

Google Plus is another great resource/tool for authors. Each day, more and more people are signing up. Those that do use Google Plus rave about the benefits and the future potential.

What a writer can do on Google Plus to make your profile more appealing:

  • provide links to your blog, websites, public profiles, online book store
  • Share information. Write posts of interests for your fans, fellow authors, blogs you follow to establish yourself as an expert and to build up your "brand."
  • Add photos of anything author related: cover photos, conventions you attend, etc.
  • Upload videos: book trailers, author introductions

Here is what makes Google's social outlet a great resource for authors: 

1. Google Plus is part of the Search Engine Google which makes your posts public, and ultimately brings more traffic to your site. Connecting your Google profile to your blog provides more search results.Check your stats! The proof is there.

2. It's all about "CIRCLES." Adding your followers/friends into specific titled circles aids in who you send posts to, and who sees your posts. Here are some good suggestions for authors: Authors, Reviewers, Bloggers, Editors, Publishers, Family, Friends, Triberr. 

3. Use hashtags in your posts to make it search-friendly. I've used the regular hashtags we use on twitter: #amwriting, #amediting. You can also tag people in your post (similar to Facebook). 

4. Each post has a "comment" option. This is easier to follow than, say, Twitter where comments are all over the place. It is one centralized place.

5. Wanna hangout? Google Plus has a "hangout" feature. I haven't used this much, as I'm still learning, but it's the big hype on Google Plus. It's a group video feature where you can interact with a "Circle." This is ideal for writer's conferences, writer's conferences, an online event such as book discussion, giveaway party, book reading sessions, interviews. The list is endless. I'd love to hear from anyone who's experienced this. 

With all the wonderful features Google Plus offers, I think a writer must add Google Plus to their platform of social media. Take the plunge and join the network. Don't forget to follow me at: https://plus.google.com/u/1/100956716011590449582/posts

Melinda Dozier is a contemporary writer. Her three debut novels were released in 2013: The Boy Next Door and Time Changes Everything from Entranced Publishing, and Breaking the Rules from Crimson Romance. Her next release, Love and Other Games: Trouble With Gold will be released in October from Swoon Romance. You can find more information at her website:www.melindadozier.com