Hey guys, Stephen here with yet another DIY Musician Guide. In this one I’m going to show you how to claim your Google Knowledge panel as well as show you what it’s all about.
What is a Google Knowledge Panel?
Well, when you’ve performed a Google search for something like a business or a brand, for example, The Beatles, you might have noticed a panel taking up the right of the search results page.
This is the Google Knowledge Panel and contains collected information about that topic such as related links, events and in our case, music.
How Do You Get a Google Knowledge Panel?
Well there are two types, a Business type and a Branded type. Obviously, as musicians we’re after the branding type for our, well, brand. For that, Google basically decides if you have enough interest around your brand to create one. So what I’m saying here is you don’t just go and create one, Google does it for you.
To see if you have one, just go ahead and Google (there’s a lot of Googles in this) your artist name and if you do have one it’ll appear on the right. If not, I’d recommend having your music on various platforms such as Spotify and iTunes, as well as also having branded social accounts. As far as I can see, that’s how I’ve got one for mine.
How Do You Claim Your Google Knowledge Panel?
OK, so if you have a Google Knowledge Panel you should have the ability to claim it. To do that you need to get verified.
Make sure you’re signed into the Google Account you’d like to use to control the panel and then click on the ‘Post Updates on Google’ link at the top. If you’re not seeing tha link, then click the ‘Claim this knowledge panel’ link at the bottom of the panel.
Now click on the ‘Get Verified’ button and go through the steps.
Moving on we’re given the choice to how we relate to the entity which we want verified.
If you’re like me, you’re the main artist or in the band you’re trying to verify so choose that second option, otherwise go with the first.
Now we’re asked some simple questions about your identity as well as provide the share link to the knowledge panel (they provide a handy image showing you how to get it).
Scrolling down, we’re asked to provide screenshots showing we’re logged into our official social channels. I did this for 3 of mine initially, which included Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.
Almost there! We’re asked to take a selfie holding a government approved ID. A passport or driving licence should be fine. All that’s left to do is provide a bit of info in the text box saying why you want to be verified. It’s a no brainer really. You want control of your brand’s knowledge panel!
When done hit that submit button. Google took about a day to verify me so it’s not too long to wait.
Now We Have Our Knowledge Panel, What Can We Do With It?
Let’s have a quick tour using my Wired to Follow knowledge panel account.
We have a bunch of options on the left including the ability to change our name, update our logo, manage users and notification settings. All of those are obviously really important but it’s the ‘Create a Post’ option I think is the reason to have this.
We can basically use this to create different types of posts that will display within our knowledge panel. I think that’s pretty decent exposure if you want to shout about a new release, gig or music video.
Just click on any of the top options to see more information on how to post.
Note that you can see some simple stats of how well your posts have been doing.
See the video above for an example of a video post you can create just by adding the YouTube URL.
One last thing. You can actually add or update your related social links on your panel. Just click on the pencil on the right of the ‘Update your info on Search’ text to do so. You can also update your featured image here too.
And that’s it! I think it’s well worth claiming your panel if you have one. It’s really not much effort at all to put out some posts and it’s nice to have them appear in the browser, kinda cutting out the middle man to other social profiles.
I suppose people have got to be searching for you specifically to have your panel appear, so it’s not like you’re getting tonnes of new traffic. That said, if anybody is searching for you, maybe for the first time, it’s great that they’ll see information you want them to see straight away, without having to rely on SEO to guide them somewhere else first.