How To Use Google+ Ripples to Identify Influencers

Want to know one of the best-kept “secrets” about Google+? It tells you who the influencers on any topic are with a feature called Ripples. Let’s take a look at a couple of quick examples.

First, you find Ripples by clicking on the context menu on any publicly available post:

(1) Christopher Penn - Google+

Here’s a post about Google+ network growth I created last week, and how it shows up in Ripples:

Google+ Ripples

Hover over any name of someone sharing that post and you can add them to your own circles. If they choose to circle you back, you can then tag them by name in future posts and they’ll likely appreciate it as long as it’s relevant.

Here’s an even more powerful tip – as long as it’s public, you can do the same with any public post. For example, here’s a post I reshared that was a cute set of bumper stickers about kids and mobile devices by Carter Gibson:

(1) Carter Gibson - Google+ - You know you live in San Francisco when.... Usually I hate…

If you’re talking about the mobile space at all, you might want to know who else thought this post was funny and/or on target for the mobile tech crowd. Hit Ripples and see for yourself:

Google+ Ripples

Carter’s very influential himself; however, there are a number of second-level circles that have done a fair amount of resharing themselves. If I were responsible for growing an audience that was mobile-focused, I’d be adding those people to my circles as well.

Now that, according to some sources, Google+ is the second-largest social network, you can’t afford to ignore it.

Christopher S. Penn
Vice President, Marketing Technology

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Posted on January 28, 2013 in Social Media

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About the Author

Christopher S. Penn has been featured as a recognized authority in many books, publications such as the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, New York Times, BusinessWeek and US News & World Report, and television networks such as PBS, CNN, CNBC, Fox News, and ABC News for his leadership in new media and marketing. In 2012 and again in 2013, Forbes Magazine recognized him as one of the top 50 most influential people in social media and digital marketing; Marketo Corporation named him a Marketing Illuminator, and PR News nominated him as Social Media Person of the Year. Mr. Penn is the Vice President of Marketing Technology at SHIFT Communications, a public relations firm, as well as co-founder of the groundbreaking PodCamp New Media Community Conference, and co-host of the Marketing Over Coffee marketing podcast. He is an adjunct professor of Internet marketing and the lead subject matter expert and professor of Advanced Social Media at the University of San Francisco. He’s the author of the best-selling book Marketing White Belt: Basics for the Digital Marketer.
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