Google Plus Social Network – Google Plus Bite-Sized Tutorial

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On November 25, 2012
Last modified:November 27, 2012

Summary:

Have you been in the circle yet?
If you think online business owners need another social network to drain our time that we don’t really have as it is, then raise your hand.
And I’m sure that I don’t see any hands up in the air, do you?
And yet here it is.

Google Plus Social Network.

So, now what, do we ignore it or make it work?
As far as I am concerned if you have heard about Google Plus social and its place in our businesses (also my business/ website), I think, you already know what the answer is.
That certainly is yes, we had better pay attention to it.
I’m sure probably you can feel the craziness of Google Plus if you have been watching the growth of Google Plus social network in the last a few days. Personally, I haven’t seen a network spread among people this fast before. And it’s not weird that people started to shout many tutorials like how to use Google Plus Social network, or how to invite people to join Google Plus and many other stuffs like that.
Still, we do have better things to do, right? However to give Google Plus as much time as it needs should be our first priority and not a second longer.
Thus, I pretty much had no life outside of living and breathing Google Plus for the past few days, just read and read. I asked my friends to share what they think about Google Plus network, and also take a tour on Google search and try to find useful Google Plus tutorials to share with you, and finally came up with the most efficient tutorial I’ve seen anywhere.

Google Plus Tutorial

Google Plus Social Circles

According to social or business value of your contacts, Google Plus Circles allow you to arrange and organize them easily.
Go under Circles tab at the top of your stream to begin editing your circles. The service revolves around a concept of “circles”.

google-plus-circles

1. If you’d like, you can add the same person to many circles, and create as many circles as you like, for whatever categories you want. (For example family, co-workers or biking friends)
2. Circle names are visible only to you. You can also control how much of your profile is visible to other folks: your name and occupation for some; relationship status for others on the network.
3. Drag and drop people’s names into a circle to add them to one of your groups.
4. Click on “Create Circle“to name a new circle.
5. The number of people you have in Circles will display in them.
6. You won’t add the same person more than once to the same circle.
7. If the same person appears in multiple circles, they’ll see your shares only once.
8. To see which circle someone is in, then hover over his/her profile picture.
9. Click Rename next to the circle name, to rename a circle.
10. Under the circle name, you can add a description.
11. If you decide to remove a person from a circle, click on the person’s name and simply drag their image out of the circle, at which point the image explode into a cloud of smoke (that is one of several whimsical touches in Google+), or just simply click “Remove” in the top corner of the circle editor.
12. To delete a circle, click on this circle and choose Delete at the bottom of the pop up box.
13. Unlike Facebook, mutual friend acceptance is not required in Google Plus.
14. Your extended circles show circles’ circles.
15. In all your circles, you can’t have more than 5,000 people.
16. You can add your Gmail as well as Yahoo! contacts to your circles.
17. Export your Facebook friends to Yahoo! email and then you can import them to Google Plus. (Check out strategies to get more traffic from Facebook)
18. Start the name of a circle with “*”, and it’ll sort to the top of the circles list, which is on the left side of the stream.

Circle Ideas

There are some unique ideas of how to make the best out of Google Plus circles as follow.

19. Create a circle for valuable tips and feedback for the early adopters of Google Plus social network.
20. Decide and add a few people you want to keep up with to a separate *Inbox circle.
21. Create a circle with no friends in it for bookmarks, and add the posts you like for your own use or to share later to it.

How to Get More Google+ Followers

22. Email your list and ask them to add you to their circles. (Check out my previous post to understand more on how to build email list
23. At the end of your blog posts, you should ask to be added.
24. Add GoogleCards widget to your sidebar, might be in your WP plugin directory.
25. Import contacts from your Gmail, Yahoo!, Facebook, Twitter (use Export.ly).

(Check out my strategies to help you drive more traffic from Twitter)

Google Plus Social Stream

The stream is where you communicate with the Plussers, and is similar to the Facebook News Feed.

By default, your stream contains all the content from people who shared specifically with you, shared publicly or shared with a circle (or extended circle) you’re in.

google-plus-stream

26. Come to grips with the fact that you might never read everything on Google+.
27. Clicking on the circle name to filter your stream to the left of that stream.
28. Check *Inbox circle for people who you want to hear from first If you created that one.
29. “Incoming” filter shows you the stream of people who are trying to share with you, but not in your circles.
30. In your Incoming stream, if you like someone, mouse over their avatar and choose to add them to a circle.
31. You can block if you don’t want to hear from someone ever again.
32. Use these signs “+” or “@” to mention someone in your post.
33. When you post your update publicly, people who’ve added you to one of their circles can see it in their stream.
34. The content that you share publicly may show up in search results.
35. When you share something with your extended circles, circles of your circles can see it.
36. Just by clicking on “Share” button at the bottom of the post, you can reshare any post you like with your circles.
37. Unless you specifically disable reshares by clicking the arrow at the top of your post, anything you share can be reshared by anyone.
38. Click on “Mute Post” through the arrow at the top of the post to stop receiving updates from a post.
39. You can drag photos, videos, links and drop them to the post you want to share.
40. Even right on the spot, you can also edit your Google Plus photos.
41. You can upload many different videos and photos at a time.
42. You can click on to get permalink of the post time stamp.
43. To “like” a post you can click “+1″ button; or click it again to undo the like.
44. With the “share” tab in the top right corner, you can share anything to Google Plus directly from your Gmail.

Google Plus Profiles

Through your profile, you can control what kind of information people can see about you such as your bio, contact details, and links to other sites created by you or just about you.

 45. Your profile is public.
46. Click on the Profile icon at the top to see your profile.
47. To edit your profile, click on “Edit Profile”.
48. In “View Profile as” box, you can see how any other Plusser sees your profile just by enter their name.
49. You can keep everything else to yourself because your full name is the only requirement for your profile.
50. You can choose whether your Google Plus social profile to be indexed by the search engines, it’s up to you. (Check out how Google works on ranking)
51. If you change your profile name then your name on other Google products, like Gmail, etc will also change.
52. Deleting your profile name also means to delete your Google account.
53. You can even choose whom to view your specific profile sections if you want.
54. It is up to you to allow people to contact you directly from your profile.
55. All content you share are saved under Posts Tab in your Profile.
56. It’s by default that people in your circles appear in your profile, but not the names of the circles.
57. In Edit Profile mode, you can choose which people publicly appear in your profile and which ones do not.
58. By clicking on your picture, other people can easily view your profile.
59. You can link your profile to the websites you own. It’s great time to do some link building as well.

Google Plus Sparks

Sparks is a way to search and track the different interests you might have.
I didn’t know about Google Plus Sparks till I came a cross some of my friends’ post.
I am sure you will definitely love this feature. Simply it keep you up to date with cool news that you really like to know about, and even you no longer need to go to Google News for that.
To be honest, it can effectively become your own customized news stream based around what you want to know about.

google-plus-sparks

60. Sparks, in a way, are like Google Alerts.
61. On any topic you like, you can set up an “alert”, including your name or your website to see who’s talking about you.
62. Click Share to pull your circles into a conversation when you find something interesting in Sparks.
63. By clicking the interest name beneath the Sparks link to the left of your stream, you can quickly access your interests.
64. Sparks keep all your interests in private mode.
65. Mouse over an interest and click on X to delete it.
66. Results in Sparks only show partial story, so that you should click on the title to read the rest.

Google Plus Social Hangouts

To imagine someone saying “Hey, I am online now, and have got nothing better to do; come hang out with me!” might me the best way to describe Google Plus Hangouts.

google-plus-hangout

67. Firstly, you have to download a plugin. After you click on “Start a Hangout” to the right of your stream, you’ll be prompted to do that.
68. From your stream or by going to plus.google.com/hangouts, you can start a Hangout at any time.
69. After you click on “hangout”, you’ll be taken to “green room” (Google Plus refers to “hangout “ as “green room”).
70. Anyone and everyone you see in your stream, you can invite to hang out with you.
71. You can check out and join current hangouts if you like what you see at Google Hangouts.
72. You’ll see the current participants, when you enter a hangout, broken down according to who is in your circles and who isn’t.
73. No one owns a hangout, so anyone in the hangout can invite anyone else.
74. A post will appear in ones’ stream if you invite them to join a hangout.
75. Just click on “YouTube” and you can watch YouTube videos in a hangout.
76. Each hangout has a specific URL, which can be shared as a link to invite others.
77. Only Google+ users are able to join Hangouts.
78. You are not able to kick anyone out of a hangout.
79. You can leave at any time if you feel uncomfortable in a hangout.

Google Plus Social Network Chat

Whatever social network you are using chat is chat.
One of the most interesting aspects of Google+ might be the video chat feature.
Hangouts don’t place a chat window on the screen for each participant. Google Plus changes the chat screen to whoever is currently talking. It can quickly switch from video feed to video feed, and move faster in bigger groups. Ten are the maximum members in any video Hangout, though users can get on a waitlist and wait for someone to leave.

80. Access chat through Chat button right under Sparks and to the left of your stream.
81. Automatically, all your Google contacts are transferred to your Google Plus chat.
82. You can invite someone to chat right from the Chat search box even if he/ she does not have already a contact.
83. Your Chat list only appears while you are in the stream.
84. You simply have to type the person’s email address into the chat search box and click Invite to chat.
85. Remember that before you can chat with someone, they must add you to their chat list.
86. Just by clicking on the phone icon at the top of the chat window, you can also make a computer-to-computer voice or video call.
87. In the chat window, you can choose to click the camera icon or the phone icon to make a video call or a voice call.
88. People can see your email address via the chat list.

Google Plus Keyboard Shortcuts

Some people are trying to use HTML to make their posts stand out. However to no avail, HTML codes won’t work with Google Plus.
Following is a list of shortcuts that will though:
89. Italic = (_)italics(_)
90. Bold = (*)bold(*)
91. Strikethrough= (-)strike-through(-)
92. Scroll up = Shift + Space or K
93. Scroll down = Space or J
94. Jump to chat = Q
95. Start comment = Return
96. End your comment = Tab + Return
97. Cancel writing a comment = Tab + Tab + Return

google-plus-social-network

Increase Traffic with Google Plus Social Network

98. To everyone who adds you to their circles post a personal “Welcome”.
99. Even when posting a link, ask a question.
100. You can get back with your commentators to keep the conversation going.
101. Be generous with mentions.

Mobile

Starting with Android, Google will be launching mobile apps for Google+. The Android app consists of access to the Stream, Circles, Sparks and multimedia.
It isn’t a surprise with the addition of these features in a mobile app. What a surprise is the app’s auto-upload feature. Through Google+, any photo or video you take on your phone is automatically uploaded to your computer, and ready to share. These uploads aren’t public. The next time you log onto your desktop, the photos button in the status bar will have a number, which indicates how many new uploads are available for sharing. For about eight hours after upload, it keeps these photos and videos available for sharing.

Google Plus Bite-Sized Tutorial Takeaway

Well, now you have this post in my own blog. This is my attempt to do the impossible that is to make sense of Google Plus in one very long post.
How did I do?
Do me a huge favor if you think it is thumbs up by just link to it in one of your future posts, as well as allow your readers to benefit from this tutorial.
Anyway, remember to add me to your circles! 

About Tony Nguyen

Tony Nguyen is the founder of Business Review Center. Since 2011, he has managed a team that has collected customer feedback and complaints on digital products, then tested products, and written product reviews. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, at Facebook, Google+, and LinkedIn.

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