Not using G+ yet? You should be, and here's why. As you know, Google is the go-to search engine. Not only are your G+ posts searchable on Google, but now, hashtags are searchable as well. With hashtags and regular content searchable, that gives you two distinct ways to be found.
I tested a search for the hashtag #socialmedia. As you can see, the hashtag search gets top billing among social posts. There's a little place where you can search the hashtag on Facebook and on Twitter, but the expensive real estate goes to G+, naturally.
How To Start Using G+
If you aren't on Google Plus yet, now is a good opportunity to create a business account. I listed some of the best practices and tips for increased engagement in the following articles. Read those as a primer.
Google Plus Hashtag Strategy And Tips
1. Use Hashtags
Duh, this is really a no-brainer, right? But beyond just throwing a hashtag in here and there, make it something you do for every post. Now that you've agreed to use hashtags often, if not every single time you post, commit to being strategic about them. The hashtags you use are going to be the key to getting you found. You want them to be relevant, but also popular. You can take a look at G+, see what's trending, and try to incorporate one of those hashtags. You can use hashtags that are very specific to what you're talking about, and you can use hashtags about general ideas you're discussing in your posts. Google+ also intuitively adds hashtags to your post. Learn more about that here.
2. Include Links To Your Site
Google+ is great for conversations and community building, but don't forget your best asset is the one you own. That, in most cases, is your own website. Use the Google Plus community to build relationships, yes. But ultimately you want people coming to your site. My advice is to write summaries that are a bit more in-depth than what you would write on, say, Facebook, and include hashtags, but link back to your own site, encouraging people to read on. This way, you'll get your keywords and hashtags in the search aspect, but you'll show your expertise and knowledge when they come back to your site, read your article, see your image, download your white paper, or whatever it is that you want people to experience on your site.
3. Use Self-Control
As fun as it might be to hashtag something really long and really stupid, don't. It's not going to help you in the long run, and in this case, it's probably not going to help you get found. While there are statistics that say using 1 or 2 hashtags on Twitter will increase your engagement, but using 3 means your engagement will drop, there are no such rules for G+ yet. However, I'd advise not to over-do it. Use 5 max, and only if they make sense and are relevant. Just because #foodporn is a really popular hashtag doesn't mean you want to be found for it, or that you're attracting the right audience for you.
How do use hashtags on Google Plus?