Business not quite open - when to kick off the campaign


Lloyd Silver

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I've got a new client with a business that will be opening their doors within 30 days. It's a brick and mortar business and there are people at the location, the phones are working, but they just aren't open to the public yet.

When can I kick off their GMB campaign including citations?

I know Google guidelines say that businesses under construction should not be added. At the same time, it'll take a couple of weeks to get the postcard and complete the validation. Do I absolutely need to wait until the doors are open to even start the GMB process? Or can I create their listing a couple of weeks before opening and not complete the verification until it's officially launched?

I'm trying to get them some business right away so I recognize I'm pushing things a little here.

With that in mind, how about citations. Could I initiate a citation project early (perhaps even if I can't start the GMB project)?
 

Blake Denman

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Play it safe, wait. You don't want to come out of the gate with a penalty against the listing.

Since it's a new brick and mortar, I would opt to create some paid advertising on a few social networks, and try some other paid routes to bring awareness to the new business.

With the recent shake-up in SERP's, who knows how long it would take for results to happen. Still build out the 5 data aggregators, and shoot for the top 50 citation sources.
 

Lloyd Silver

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Yeah we're launching a massive Facebook campaign as part of the launch event. Just trying to explore all avenues.
 

Linda Buquet

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You can do citations now.

If lucky the citations will cause a G+ Local listing to be scraped and created. It will be bare and empty but will be live.

In the past I've heard from Google that you could start a listing 2 weeks before opening BUT I've also heard of them suspending if the site still said coming soon or grand opening or anything like that. OR if a mod calls which they may if it looks like it's a new business with no citations and they ask a question and whoever answers says we aren't open yet - bam.

So I would do citations, then play it safe and wait til open to do the listing like Blake said.
 

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