Google My Business (GMB) has progressively increased in value to small businesses. Now, it’s to the point where you need to start thinking about GMB as a social media platform (e.g. LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram) and a mini website for local businesses all wrapped into one.
Google My Business Advances to Ultra Valuable Business Tool
GMB is traditionally thought of as a basic tool to update your business hours, add in a contact phone number, and allow customers to find your place of business on the map.
However, Google has steadily added new features that allow you to tell a more complete story about your business and drive customer engagement. These features include the ability to link to your latest blog articles, drop in social media-style posts, mix in company photos, and craft more content that you would traditionally find on a social platform or on your company website.
As these features have rolled out and the platform has matured, we have found ourselves asking whether to think of GMB as another social platform or a mini website. I’m here to say it can be viewed as both!
And, this hybrid platform is not just for restaurants to display their menu or retailers to link off to products. It’s for all businesses — even B2B companies whose customers aren’t looking for store hours, but rather looking for concise information about your company or products/services when deciding whether to do business with you.
B2B Helps Bridge the Gap Reaching Customers
The opportunity for small businesses is to communicate a clear message on a platform that is easily accessible for all customers. This addresses a common challenge for both social media and websites:
- Social media challenge: you need to grow your company following in order to reach more of your target audience with your message.
- Website: you need to bring your customers to your website when they are not actively looking at your website.
The increasingly-valuable Google My Business solves both challenges for businesses. Your social media-style content is centrally located on your existing Google business page and the content on your website is curated on a platform (Google) that everyone already uses.
Customers can find everything they need to know in one location, and you don’t have to chase down your audience because they’re already coming to Google.
Now, does this mean you should stop posting on LinkedIn and Facebook, stop updating your website, or stop sending out emails to your lists? Absolutely not.
Your business should still continue marketing through traditional social, website, and email channels. These marketing channels are incredibly valuable to send very targeted messages to specific audiences.
However, think of GMB like this. It’s the place to put everything together to tell a cohesive story and send a clear message to a larger audience about what you do, what’s important to your company, and how your customers can do business with you.
GMB is valuable digital real estate at a time when the business world is crowded with so many different messages and when we’re all subject to information overload. Using GMB effectively will help your company stand out from the crowd through a nice, clean, cohesive message.
How We Manage Google My Business for Clients
We have been fortunate to have a front-row seat to watch the growth and development of Google My Business. We now use this marketing tool to consistently update our clients’ GMB page with fresh content and information to connect with their customers.
The social media scheduling tool that we use, Sprout Social, even introduced a new feature to schedule social posts directly to GMB, supporting our existing process for dropping content into GMB.
It’s time to think bigger about GMB as not just a tool to provide basic information, but an effective channel to actively market your small business.
Our digital marketing agency provides Google My Business help through active management of your GMB page. Our team is dedicated to updating the GMB page for our clients on a regular basis by leveraging by blogs, social content, and more resources to promote your products or services. Talk to us about how we can help!