Not Really a Top Ten Tips on How to Make Money Online with G+

I remember when Twitter started and I was following/being followed by about 200-300. The signal to noise ratio was very high. Because you couldn’t add pictures/video/music into the stream there was little distraction.

Things were focussed on the the business of SEO and Social Media Manipulation. All good stuff. Of course the “drinking coffee” Tweets started to seep in and things increasingly got tedious and banal.

But then an interesting thing happened to Twitter, normal people started to join it. The BBC and other mainstream media organisations came to the party. And it became a powerful tool for a marketer.

Looking at my G+ stream right now, there are pictures of cars, funny videos, reviews on TV shows and so forth. Very little of what I really want, which is SEO and social media and other media stuff. Now, you could say just create a circle and blah blah blah. Problem is, it’s not the people I need to separate, it’s the topics of the posts.

I am sure there are people have a lot of time on their hands to be able to tweak and learn a new social media system. I’m trying to be polite about this, but there seems to be a lot of “look at me I’m a first mover” kinda business going on.

If your business is built around telling me what social media tool to use in exchange for piles of cash, then it makes a lot of sense to be here.

But, I look at my stream in G+ and just see a bunch of distraction and just like Twitter can be, it’s a bit banal, a bit childish and a bit crap. Sorry if this offends, but my job is to write what I think, not to give borderline personality types the warm fuzzies.

I have my Google Reader, I have Twitter, I have Facebook, I have Google Alerts, I have Linked in, I have email. I very much doubt I will miss something if I don’t squat on G+ as client work ends up being late (as it mostly does, but that’s another story).

There is a big bag of reason to be on G+ and check it out. But if it does not fit my strategy it ends up being a big bag of wank. I think there are reasons to keep tabs on the system as these things tend to morph into something that wasn’t initially expected. But the idea of sitting here, eating carrot cake and ingesting the stream of G+ leaves me a bit queasy. Much better to go and read my copy of the Guardian which I bought in a pique of righteous indignation whilst tutting at the piles of unsold copies of the Sun.

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+ 1 button marketing

Will Google +1 Result in the End of Small Business Online?

It’s very simple.

Either Google +1 will affect the search engine results or it will not.

What if it does?

Will the frenetic dash that Digital Media Agencies mean that they then resell their networks to Corporate big gits to help crush the small independent, just as they have on the high street?

A little emotive perhaps.

But what does Google say?

When your ad is shared, Google notes its final landing page URL. When the same URL appears in an organic search listing, the organic listing will include the same personal annotations as would an ad.

Similarly, if a user +1’s one of your organic listings, ads with the same final landing page URL will include the same personal annotations, increasing the chance of your ads getting noticed.

+1’s (whatever their source — organic search, ads, or +1 buttons on publisher sites) is a signal that affects organic search ranking, but +1’s do not change quality scores for ads and ad ranking

How will the +1 button affect my organic search listings?

I had to read it a few times before it sunk in.

Rankings are not going to be affected. It’s just that some hairy seo/social-media-manipulator is going to have their mug next to the search results. As long as you are logged into Google and you circle/follow/adore the hairy seo/social-media-manipulator who has taken the valuable seconds of his existence to +1 it.

My point is this. Is the potential buyer of a cordless power drill, when searching for a Makita 18v going to see and then be influenced by the hairy seo/social-media-manipulator? Or is it going to only other hairy seo/social-media-manipulators who see the results.

I think the latter.

As a commercial persuasion proposition, the Google +1 button will be mostly worthless. The majority of the human effort going into the +1 will stay in the goldfish bowl which the hairy seo/social-media-manipulator lives.

Sometimes the hairy seo/social-media-manipulator does stuff not because it’s going to be of great benefit to the client, but because they have something to sell and the I-don’t-want-to-be-left-behind part of the brain gets excited.

People mistake influence in the hairy seo/social-media-manipulator bubble with an increase in wealth.

I’m not anti social media/social signals/crowd sourcing etc. far from it. But, most of what you hear about it these days is garbage, people need to sell books, fill conferences and get endorsed by the latest over invested fad and so desire has to be created.

It’s as if a food is being sold to hungry people which only increases their hunger.

Stop eating the empty calories.

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+ 1 button marketing

The Best Blog Post on Google +1 you will ever read

I hate to say this, I really do. But Google +1 will fail.

I don’t think this because I have done an in depth analysis of it’s features and tested it for the last 6 months it’s more instinctive, so take that for what it’s worth. My thinking is based on the following.

  • Google does search very well, social is a different thing entirely
  • Google isn’t hungry, failure will not move the share price or cause a significant bump in revenues
  • Google can buy Twitter whenever it realises it can’t do social, so why try too hard
  • Sheds of sock puppets are on standby to manipulate the system
  • There is no void for Google + 1 to fill, we can already do what it offers and are embedded in other networks
  • Social networks are powered by fundamental forces like sex, money, social approbation etc. I don’t see any of these primal forces being sated in the current features

There are a few more reasons I will save for the email list.

I hate saying all this because Google could have done it, they left it too late. I remember saying back in 2007 they should do something like this.

They have spent too much of the evening working on their PhD papers and turned up at the party with a bottle of Peach Schnapps wondering why the hot chicks have already left the party.

The other reason of course is that Google search is very, very good and it would be hard to improve it. Google Search and it’s commercial cousin Adwords are truly the works of genius. Which is why it feels awkward watching people get excited over this.

Ah well, gives SEO bloggers something to write about.

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Social Media is about Influence not Relationships

I have a shelf full of overpriced books on social media. I say overpriced as most are just rehashed blog posts.

And most of them bang on about “relationships”, or “it’s all about the conversation”. As if yammering away about anything and everything and connecting with everyone and her dog is all you have to do.

Well that thinking is just a big bag of wrong.

Because, “IT” is not about the conversation, “IT”, is about influence or persuasion.

Sure, the conversation or having a rip roaring relationship that transcends all other relationships ever had in the history of humanity is something which social media does very well.

But, that is not the point.

It is NOT the goal.

The goal, is for people to be influenced into making a specific action.

For example:

  • Think positively about your brand
  • Buy more of your stuff
  • Hire you for a killer job
  • Make love to you in a Ford Cortina

And before you climb up to the pulpit to proclaim sex has nothing to do with social media or influence or persuasion. You may want to look at the fundamental nature of human beings.

I thought about this as Tina Jonasen questioned me on twitter.

@lyndoman Just wondering; you say you are a “Link Builder”, but follows nobody? Maybe I´m confused between Link- & RelationshipBuilder !?

Which is an interesting question.

Humans are those who link, therefore relationships are very useful. I tweeted back a few thoughts.

@ThinkInNewAreas A link can be a result of a human relationship built on following someone on Twitter but it’s not an effective or efficient

@ThinkInNewAreas The, “shall I link to this webpage” thought process only sometimes has a “does this person follow me on twitter” component

@ThinkInNewAreas Also, I want to suggest, it’s not about “relationships”, it’s about influence. Relationship is merely a stepping stone.

I think people get wrapped up too easily in the “relationship” part of social media. Which is perfectly understandable, but you have to step back and ask, “what am I doing here?”

“What is my social media strategy?”

It will stop you building relationships with the wrong people or spending all morning trading pictures of kittens who look like members of the Royal family.

Not following anyone on Twitter is a very interesting thing to do, as it removes a sedentary proclivity (natural urge to sit on your arse and be spoon fed information) and go on the hunt for useful bits of info.

It also highlights a few other things, which I may talk about later.