This particular entry was originally written for my collegue April Renee’s site Writing Your Words. Please visit the direct site for writing advice and ideas.
A Professional Playground
Google Plus (Google+), is number one on the list of my top three favorite social media sites next to Twitter and Instagram. Upon its launch in 2011 it was reported to have a growing rate of millions of users daily. I find Google+ the most beneficial overall for its superior networking capabilities and direct format. I would describe Google+ as a professional playground for adults who desire to connect and share ideas, knowledge, and expertise, through plus ones (+1s) and #hashtags.
I find its most distinct feature, how the user is able to group their followers according to similar interests called circles. They say, keep your circles tight!
The following are a short description of frequently used Google+ terms followed by tips I find most helpful.
Google Plusses or Plus Ones (+1s) – The +1 button is found on the bottom-left of a post. It is used to indicate a like or appreciation of something one posts.
Circles – Groups of Google+ users that are organized into categories that you invent. For example, I have an author’s circle for my fellow writers and a fitness circle for fellow fitness enthusiasts.
Hangouts – Videoing or private messaging with one or more Google+ users.
Hashtags – Are labels or keywords. When posting it is imperative to use #hashtags with your post. It is how others find you.
Google+ Stream – Is where you find updates of individuals in your circles – a stream of data.
H.I.R.L. – Hang-out in Real Life was most popular in 2012 and 2013 when local Google+ members met in person in groups at a predetermined location for a social gathering.
Dana’s Google+ Tips
Build a Network – As an avid and frequent Google+ user since early 2012, I find searching for Google+ users through #hashtags one of the best tools thus far. It is how I built a solid Google Plus network of 10,000 plus followers. On a monthly basis, I search for authors and writers who have current postings on topics of my liking. You search by entering a keyword or #hashtag via the Google Plus search box. I do not simply circle them. I interact with them and start discussions.
Post Publicly – When you have a newly published article, share with the world! It’s how you are discovered. I used to post privately or with only certain circles because I was afraid of non-professional or crude comments. Google Plus didn’t make a block feature or delete comment option for no reason. If you find a comment offensive, delete it, it’s your stream.
Keep an Updated Profile – I cannot tell you how many times I have received circle requests with no picture or a blank profile. I deny these requests as I feel the individual is not serious about networking and sharing information. Keep it simple and professional, you do not have to include too much data on your profile but at least put your likes, interests, purpose, and links to any website you’d like to showcase. Do not forget a picture!
I’ve professionally networked on more than one occasion through Google+ which led to valid writing opportunities. I’ve also gained knowledge and mentionable mentors and guides throughout my Google+ experience. It’s honestly a suburb social media site if used properly.
Bio: Dana holds her MBA from the University of Maryland University College and also has a BS in Psychology. She is knowledgeable about various topics via both research and personal experience. She enjoys researching topics such as, social media, fitness, health, work from home opportunities, relationships, education and much more. Her work experience includes clerical and management experience in the healthcare industry. She also enjoys writing POV, poetry and fiction. For professional and business opportunities she can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com. Samples of her writing can be found here: Tools for Virtual Assistant Success, 365daysofhealthandfitness.com, and Work From Home.