from explains how a good content strategy can build trust with your prospective (and current) customers before you even "meet" them.
As I say in the opening of my latest column for , this is the post I hoped I'd never have to write again.
I wrote this one neither to praise Google+ nor to bury it (sorry, Shakespeare!), but rather to try to correct what I see as some possible misunderstandings and misrepresentations about the current status and near-future of Google+.
Particularly, if you've heard or read that Google+ is being "split up" or "dismantled," you need to read this post.
Let me know what you think about my take!
My latest article in takes on this topic. Bottom line is that Google may not be looking at rel=author tags, and they may not be evaluating author authority as a ranking factor, BUT, establishing author authority is still a big deal.
Check out the full story here!
Google+ and Foursqaure's Swarm have not announced an agreement to produce the best of both worlds combining the gamification that was Foursquare (pre-swarm), the location pages of Google My Business, and one's personal G+ profiles. But what if they did?
Google has struggled to convince users that Google My Business (rebranded more times than we care to count) is an awesome product. Meanwhile, Foursquare pretty much destroyed their product when they abandoned the #gamification aspects and created Swarm. And although Swarm has just recently brought back some very basic aspects of the old system, it still fails to achieve much multiplayer gamification that so many desire (even if they promise to do so in an upcoming update).
Anyone remember G+ games? It may have failed (for multiple reasons), but the one aspect that it helped G+ with, was getting a particular group of people to start using or test out the new G+ platform. How you get them is how you keep them, and G+ hasn't kept those people.
So what could a gamified G+ and GMB look like?
First of all, G+ needs a Swarm style check in app. Could this be part of the current G+ app or should it be a totally separate one? Either way, the app needs to be very simple in its design. A simple home screen that lists the closest places you can check into perhaps ranked by proximity but with some leverage added to the previous places you have checked into (similar to what Swarm currently does).
Then we take several aspects from Valve's Steam and Steam Achievements. Although Swarm has stickers and has tried to install some meaning back into them recently, they still don't mean much beyond your own personal goals. It feels so "single player". Each G+ user could enable a new tab (just like their "posts", "about", "collections", "reviews", etc. tabs), that is called Swarm Achievements or simply "Swarm". (PR may dictate a name change since the Swarm brand may be beyond repair). On this tab, you would find your Swarm Level, various achievement accomplishments, and other highlights from one's check-ins. Just like the old Foursquare, you could get special achievements for checking into a certain number of airports, burger joints, parks, etc. Each of these would contribute to you overall "Level".
Leaderboards, based on circles, and special achievements based on those leaderboards could also play a role in your levels. Although this would bring about advertising into the G+ world, Google could offer Klout-like perks for people of certain levels. Mayorships (foursquare's biggest mistake was removing global mayorships) could exist along with several achievements on how long you keep them or how many you have.
Meanwhile, on the GMB side, businesses could display on their Pages, the average level of visitors that check in to their business, Who the Mayor and Vice Mayor may be, Record number of check-ins at the same time, and many other special stats. They could encourage check-ins and post about Swarm Events, or attempts to set a check-in record. This could also play right into AdWords Engagement ads and Events for those places that have the required number of followers to do such ads. Perhaps business owners could also put users that check in to the business into special circles or mark those that are employees so that "real mayors" could actually with the mayorship of their business. The increase in visitors to these pages for check-ins may encourage more reviews of an establishment, further helping Google's BMG pages.
Going a step further, if one of these swarm events could also be "periscoped" via an updated version of Google Hangouts, the engagement of all aspects of Google+ would increase significantly.
Anyway, the opportunities are endless. This is a win/win/win scenario. Google+ may be doing fine on its own, but it's PR battle isn't much better than foursquares at the moment. Getting some new blood to try out G+ via gamification (which it started with and abandoned a few years ago), may be just what it needs.
Although I live in Iowa, I work in South Dakota, and whether that were the case or not, I still have a vested interest in national topics, especially the one talked about in the round table for this event.
Although some hate the long presidential election cycle, I rather enjoy it most of the time. Sure, it is extremely long and seems to get longer every time around, but living in Iowa gives one an opportunity many do not have: meeting many of the candidates in person.
Anyway, this is my warning post to all those that hate politics. Just as I did 4 years ago, I plan to give updates on all the mailings, phone calls, and personal meetings with candidates as they happen. Things will still be "slow" over the next few months; but the last three months of this year, leading up to next year's Iowa Caucuses will become very active. I know not everyone has the opportunity to meet the candidates first hand or see the extremely dirty tactics some candidates (or their "un-associated" groups) use on a daily basis. I hope to share my daily interactions with the candidates' mailings, phone calls, and campaign appearances.
Let the long process begin with this announcement from Ted Cruz....
- Pensacola Christian CollegeCommunications/Broadcasting, 1994 - 1998
- Zanesville Christian SchoolK-12 - High School Diploma, 1981 - 1994
I graduated with a degree in Communications of which I had a concentration in Broadcasting and a Minor in History.
I married Gwendolyn (Fluker) Jacob on Saturday, January 8, 2005. Tasha G. Jacob was born a month early on Saturday, October 1, 2005. Connor W. Jacob was born almost two months early on May 13, 2010.
I am currently involved in marketing in the area of website analytics, seo, ppc, and social media. I have been Google AdWords and Analytics Qualified
- Click RainOnline Marketing Strategist, 2012 - present
- Sioux Falls SoftballASA Slow Pitch Softball Umpire, 2012 - 2014
- Alpha Omega PublicationsPPC, Analytics, and SEO Specialist, 2005 - 2012
- West Gate Baptist ChurchMarketing, Web Engineer, Teaching, 2004 - 2005
- Accelerated Christian EducationAudio/Video Technician, 2003 - 2004
- PRG Promotions, Inc.Web Engineer, 2002 - 2003
- City of ZanesvilleASA Slow Pitch Softball Umpire, 1995 - 2005
- State of Ohio - Dillon State ParkCamp Store Clerk, 2001 - 2002
- Corbett/Mock Cabinet Co.Office Manager, 2000 - 2000
- Shaw Video CommunicationsVideographer, 1998 - 2000
- City of ZanesvilleLunch Coordinator, 1998 - 1998
- City of ZanesvilleFood Monitor, 1997 - 1997
- City of ZanesvillePlayground Leader, 1995 - 1996
- A Beka VideoQC Operator, 1994 - 1998