Are You Still Not On Google Plus? Here’s Why and How You Should!
Image Source: Bit Rebels
It’s been around 3 years since Google Plus entered the crowded arena of social networks. You may not be actively using it, but believe it or not, Google Plus now is the second largest social network after Facebook, with 540 million monthly active users!
Then, why are so many marketers and bloggers look down upon the network and many of us don’t prefer to us it?
Maybe if we take a look at what’s inside, we’ll love it! Let’s see the basics of Google+ and get to know the platform better.
Not surprisingly, you log in to the service by using your Google account.
This is what your user profile will look like, with a profile picture and a cover photo, just like Facebook. Your “About” text, school and employment info, and follower number will be displayed here.
Your information sections will be public at first, but you can change your privacy settings easily after.
Your updates will appear in a timeline, and your share box is available for a quick use. Like Facebook, you can use photos, videos and links to share your thoughts.
Like many other social platforms, Google+ is based on images, too. Don’t forget to add a beautiful profile picture of yours and a cover photo with the size of maximum 2120 x 1192 pixels.
If your profile is set, you’re ready to create circles!
You can think of the Circles as an alternative to “Friends” on Facebook, but a little more detailed.
What’s good about Google+ Circles is that you can create lists to divide your connections into Friends, Family, Acquaintances, and many more that you create. For example, if you want to follow some brands and pages, you can create a special list for them.
Adding connections is easy. Just drag the person to a list and drop!
You can think of Google+ Circles as a platform to follow people or pages, whose feed you enjoy.
More than that, Google+ will continue to suggest you connections, based on your friends, background info and mail connections. You can easily keep growing your circles and stay organized!
Thanks to these lists, you can specialize your updates to one group and not the other. The updates of the people you are connected to will appear on your “Stream”. What can it be?
That’s right, it’s like your News Feed!
Stream is the core of Google+, because that’s where everything will be shown. Keep in mind that you can filter your Stream according to a special group in your Circles and display only their updates.
Another element in your Stream will be recommendations by Google+. They consist of hot topics and posts, for you to have a better social experience.
There are several ways to interact with a post on Google+. You can “+1″ an update to show that you “like” it. Other than sharing and commenting, you can see other options on the top right of each post.
In parallel with your Stream, you’ll be able to discover what’s hot on the platform quickly by visiting the “Explore” tab on your menu.
Talking about “hot”, Google+ attaches importance to hashtags. By using hashtags similar to Instagram and Twitter, you have a better chance at visibility. You can also use related hashtag suggestions provided by Google+ itself.
These are the very basics of Google’s social networking platform. Feel free to wander around the site and discover various features, like Communities, Hangouts, Pages, Events and Locations.
They are all available on your left-side menu.