This is pretty common on Google+. Below I’ll cover both personal profiles and business pages.
Let’s start with the personal profiles:
Possible reasons for low engagement:
- A lot of people get on Google+ and discover many of their friends are not there, and then they venture a bit deeper and circle some people with the same interests. This is a fantastic idea for professionals, but many people leave after circling some people up. When this happens, you have a new “follower” that doesn’t actually “follow” you. This results in a new person who has followed/circled you but they’re never going to see your posts again.
- You ended up in a circle share. People will just circle everyone in the circle and then mute the circle. They’re never going to see what you post and it is not going to show up in their stream.
- Someone circled you hoping you’d circle them back. A lot of these people do not check their stream and never see your posts; they just want as many people to circle them as possible.
- You made the suggested user list. This is rare but if you happen to end up on this mystery list expect 1,000 new followers per day. Most of these people just hopped on for a minute, crossed over from Gmail for a few, set up a new Android phone, etc and have no interest in the G+ platform and will never, ever see anything that you post.
Almost everyone I’ve checked out on Google Plus has 0% engagement. Some might get close to 0.4%, but that is rare. The number is always closer to 0% than 1%, so I call this 0% engagement.
Just the other day I saw someone boasting about their 70,000 member “audience”. This is flat out misleading. Given what this user understands about the platform, I would even call it deceptive. It is glaringly obvious that their “audience” is under 300 people, and possibly even under 150 people.
Google Plus is a very powerful platform with great abilities to share pictures and control who sees your content. Other than the initial complexity of getting started in it and the constant changes it goes through, it is great. But, don’t expect major engagement on things you post. If you get 10 – 20 +1s and you have 2,000 “followers”, you’re doing pretty good. At some point, if you’re trying to gain a following on Google Plus, you’ll have to sit down and ask yourself why. Of course, if you are a business, having a Google+ business is valuable.
Google Plus Business Pages:
Now if you are a business page, some of the above applies but there is a new aspect. Getting people to circle a business page can be difficult. I know, as I manage dozens of pages for businesses. You have to be engaging, spending time on the platform, and reaching out to people, circling them and communicating with them, and providing value on your page. Even after you have obtained some followers, you’ll still run into the same engagement issues as mentioned above. Building a presence on Google Plus as a business can have search value, which is what I like about it.
I love that a business page can act like a personal profile- joining communities, engaging with people, leaving reviews on other businesses, etc… But not all business pages are perceived well. Just the other day I was logged in as a roofing company that I work with and was sharing some images and a community moderator was going through and deleting my posts. They were not spam, they did not link to me, I was simply adding content to their community, and sharing high quality images to it. This is content for their community, and helps grow it. They did not kick the page out, or contact it and say why. The community has several moderators, so I’m not even sure which mod was deleting the posts! I still came up with a creative idea that day to participate in some communities and even gained new followers, but doing it organically and finding people genuinely interested on your business page can be a challenge. I’ve also managed a page about puppies, and that was a breeze. Everyone loves puppies. I can come up with a way to get any business page engagement. On many of the pages I manage, people DO actively follow them, and some of the pages get as much as 10%-20% engagement. If you can organically grow a following of people who genuinely DO need/want your product or service, they’ll jump right on it and be eager to hear more of what you have to say. A good example of this is a sustainable farm page that I manage. The foodies love it, and the farm is actually a very good non GMO, sustainable farm.
Google Plus doesn’t have nearly as many users as some of the other social media platforms, but it doesn’t need to; Google Plus is merging with all things Google. It is great for businesses to gain exposure through Google products. Growing a presence on Google Plus is very time consuming. If you need assistance efficiently and naturally growing your following please contact me.