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Wednesday, August 03, 2011

How TV stations can use Google+

I've been on Google+ for a while now but haven't really posted any thoughts here about it. You can follow me at where I am posting different stuff from my usual Twitter/Facebook feeds (although you have to be on Facebook to receive my Spotify playlists).

I'm no genius, but it looks like Google+ will be sticking around for awhile.

So far, we've seen TV stations get kicked off the service by creating a business profile. Google says it only wants people profiles as it ramps up the service. Business profiles will be coming though.

In the meantime, I think TV stations should at least create a person profile to stake your claim. I'd pick a popular anchor and create an account around them. In Houston, KPRC 2's Dominique Sachse has been a social media favorite so that's a logical choice. But then I argue you could take a Dave Ward from KTRK 13 and give him an account in a retro cool sort of way.

There is plenty of material that you can post on Google+ that can promote the TV side or send traffic to your website. This is where the Circles feature could be kind of cool for media outlets.

Let's face it, broadcasters love to put viewers into demo categories. Well, Google+ has made that pretty easy to do. The social network's Circles feature does that for you. You could break your followers down into male or female circles for example. (a third one could be It's Pat if you are so inclined). Circles could also be broken down by age too. The sky is the limit.

Why would you want to do this? It's all about targeting my friend. Have a sweeps story on menopause...send it to the female circle. Have a story on low testosterone get what I mean. I use these easy to define examples here, but your staff can get into the debate of what gets targeted behind closed doors. Clearly there are some stories that will mostly do better with one gender (or Circle).

For the other stories, you can throw them all in the public feed because they could affect anyone. One positive feature is that when you put something in the public Circle, it makes it viewable as a linked headline on the Internet (no shortened URL). I'm guessing here, but I imagine that can help your SEO since search engine bots can index your linked headlines.

Just some of my thoughts. If you have any, comment or send them to me. If you do that, I bet you might find yourself in my "Heart" circle. COMMENT: Click to leave your thoughts on this post here