With so many social networks available now, it doesn’t seem easy to learn how to maximize the benefits of using each one. Understanding how to use Google+ is definitely one social network that should be on your to do list. One huge benefit to using Google+ is it often causes rankings to increase on links you share, far more than sharing on other social sites. That means you are far more searchable if you’ve established your presence there.
Let’s take a look at some more of the features and benefits of Google+.
Group your contacts
Google+ gives us the option of putting our contacts into circles, which is basically putting them into groups that make sense. You get to pick the names and when you add a person to a circle, it will tell them you’ve added them but it doesn’t reveal the name of the circle. This way we can share our updates with a specific group of people, instead of sending out messages to everyone we’re connected to like we do on Facebook. For example, if you want to send a message to only family members, it’s easy to do once you’ve set up your circles.
You can have as many circles as you want but to maximize efficiency, you should limit it to just a few unless you are a heavy user. Plus, you can add your followers to as many different circles as you want, rather than being limited to just one.
By using circles to selectively share information, you make it a much cleaner sharing environment for everyone and you make it easier for people who are interested to find what they’re looking for. Many users are finding that this kind of targeting leads to better engagement and sharing from their followers. Circles also allow you to limit which posts are showing up when you view your stream.
Click on one of your circles and it will show only posts by the people you’ve put in that circle. That helps when you only want to see posts from colleagues, rather than wasting time scrolling past the latest family drama!
Fill out your profile
If you want people to find you and know why they should add you to one of their circles, you’re going to want to completely fill out your profile. Including links to your blog or websites will help amp up the Google juice, giving you a boost in visitors to your site. Take the time to do this right, and then keep it up to date on a regular basis.
Once people can find you, they need a reason to be interested in what you have to share. Make sure you keep your profile interesting. Avoid being bland and putting just the bare facts, and you’ll be more likely to see some growth in your followers.
Frontload your status updates like headlines
Content writers online should be familiar with what frontloading headlines means but for those who don’t, it means to put the most important part first. With Google+, users should do the same with their updates. Most people scan through posts, so keep the important words at the beginning so they’ll spot them and stop long enough to see what you have to say.
Need an online video meeting?
Google+ has an awesome feature called Google+ Hangouts, which allows up to ten people to have a video chat. While it sounds like a great way to just have a good visit with friends, it also works well for business meetings. During the video chat, you can also use the regular chat functions, and they have a nifty tool called screen sharing. You can basically show the people you’re video chatting with what’s on your screen, which has a multitude of uses. Use screen sharing to work on a long-distance project together, or to show your mom how to debug her computer.
Engage with other users
While it might seem obvious, the key to being successful on Google+, or really any social network, is engaging with other users. People will notice you if you have great interactions with other, and they’ll add you to one of their circles. Show them that you’re worth listening to, and they’ll stand up and take notice.
You might not be a social media pro, but taking the time to explore what Google+ can offer you that other social networks do not is worth the effort. You might even like it better than Facebook!
Do you have any tips to add for using Google+?