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Do Bloggers Need to be on Google+?

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google plus The principle behind the founding of Google is quite simple: Some webpages are much more important others. How do they decide which are the most important? Basically, importance is given to content that Google believes answers questions users have about a particular topic better than other webpages.

The face of internet search technology was completely changed by Google webpage evaluations. They evaluate each link pointing to a particular webpage according to the quantity, as well as how much Google trusts the sites the links come from.

However, in 1998 things changed even more. That’s when Google also began judging the popularity of a webpage based on the amount of likes it receives through social media sharing. Social sharing helps to increase the search engine rankings of a particular webpage. Yet, Facebook and Twitter still aren’t exactly cooperative with Google. The webpage itself was always the focus of the story, until recently. Thanks to Google+, the writer is now a central part as well.

How to Increase Your Google+ Audience

Google+ profiles serve as verifiable identities for bloggers. Your reputation on Google+ is influenced by several factors:

  • The actual number of Google+ followers you have.
  • The actual number of reshares for your content.
  • The actual number of +1’s you receive.
  • Your Google+ activity: regular posts, comments, reshares and +1’s you’ve given others.

Thanks to Google+, your content is not the only thing users can vote for to grow your reputation. Today, when you get a +1 on your content, you, personally, are also getting a +1 vote. Many users say that Google+ profiles appear to grow much faster than on both Facebook and Twitter.

So, what are some effective ways to build your Google+ audience? Just keep in mind that G+ is a social media platform made up of groups of like-minded people, called communities. Therefore, that’s exactly how you should treat it.

  • Create a Great Bio – Effective Google+ bios include your actual name or pen name, a summary describing who you are, what your business does, why you’re using Google+ and the type of content you plan to share on G+. Make sure that there are keywords included in your places, education, employment and introduction sections of your Google+ bio.
  • Build Relationships – When you first begin, follow people you actually know. Then, simply search for more people to follow and get to know. Google has also implemented Google+ Hangouts, which gives users a more unique way to interact with other G+ users.
  • Share Content – Create original content for your blog posts. These can be video, photo or text posts. Then, share links to your content on G+. Be sure to create an attention-grabbing headline and add a brief though about the content. Also, end your post with an intriguing question to encourage user comments.
  • Comment, Comment, Comment – Leave relevant, interesting comments on photos and posts, asking thought-provoking questions. You can also refer (or tag) other users by typing “+” and their name to get a display of results to choose from.

Using Google+ for Social Media Marketing

Your blog must contain interesting content that’s relevant and valuable to the lives of your target audience. Social media marketing is one of the most effective techniques for getting the word out about your blog and its great content.

Are you using Google+ to interact with your target audience? If so, what are some of the methods you use to lure readers to your blog posts using Google+?

The Daily Social Media Habits of Successful Bloggers

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Want to know the secret for engaging with your followers online? In the world of social media, it’s all about your habits. The daily habits you implement as social media routines directly impact the ways you’re able to connect with your followers. When you are consistent, focused, and strategic in your efforts, the results show it.

Here’s what you should be doing, every day, on social media channels:

Google Plus: Post every new blog post.

When you post the link to your latest blog post on your Google Plus profile, that content gets indexed faster and you expose your content to your network. What’s more, content on Google Plus tends to do well in Google search results, helping you improve overall SEO. Here’s an example of how Brian Samuels, the blogger behind A Thought for Food, publishes his new posts on Google Plus, usually with commentary and #hashtags:

ThoughtforFood

Pinterest: Pin every day—5 to 30 times.

As with every social media site, the idea with Pinterest is to be a resource of good content without being annoying. You shouldn’t pin nonstop anymore than you should pin infrequently; for the best results, pin every day. Pin content that’s relevant to your brand in some way—but feel free to think outside the box, too.  The more quality content you pin, the more opportunities for others to repin your content and promote you profile, as well as to find your content through search. Look at the example of photographer Nicole Franzen, who regularly pins bright, beautiful images across her 31 different boards:

NicoleFranzen

Editor’s note: If you don’t have time to sit on Pinterest all day every day, you can use Pingraphy to schedule your pins so they appear throughout the day instead of all at once.

Twitter: Tweet every day—at least 4-5 times.

According to research published at Media Bistro, profiles that Tweet at least four to five times a day see some of the best results on Twitter. Use your updates to interact with followers, retweet info you find interesting, share valuable information, and promote your content. Whole Foods Market does this well, posting relevant updates almost every hour:

WFMarket

Facebook: Share Images and Quotes.

An article at TechCrunch last year pointed out that Facebook updates typically receive responses for up to three hours after being posted—so spreading updates out by at least that amount of time makes sense. The content that does best on Facebook are images and quotes—users tend to stay on the network rather than clicking links that send them away. For an example of a blogger who’s doing this well, check out Deliciously Organic:

DeliciouslyOrganic

Overall: Think Strategically.

If looking at the above list feels overwhelming and you’re wondering how to find the time to do all these tasks each day, don’t be discouraged. To help you maximize your productivity, here are a few tips for being active on social media without spending every day tied to a computer screen:

  • Schedule Facebook posts and Twitter updates: Use a tool like Buffer or Hootsuite to plan your posts throughout a day. You can schedule updates to run at various intervals to spread them out for maximum impact.
  • Take a few minutes each morning to curate content: Rather than hanging on your social networks all afternoon, set aside a certain chunk of time each day to pull together shareable content. Because you’re scheduling posts, you can easily set these updates to go live all day long.
  • Monitor and adjust: Not every blogger needs to be on every social media platform, so test the different ones o see which makes the most sense for you. If you find engagement on Facebook brings in most of your traffic, make that site a priority; if regular and relevant Tweeting yields few results, focus your attention elsewhere.

Whether you blog about baseball or beauty products, using a chunk of weeks or a full month to test these social media habits is a good idea. Set aside a period in which you consistently post, share, pin, and tweet every day—and, at the end of that period, take a look at the results. They might surprise you.

Google+ Cheat Sheet [Infographic]

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Whether it’s a Word doc or a social media platform, there are always tips and shortcuts that can help us do things more efficiently.

For those of you who are active on Google+, check out this helpful infographic from Blue Rise Media. (And, if you want to learn how to effectively use Google+ hangouts, be sure to read  “25 Brilliant Bloggers Talk About Google+ Hangouts.”)

 

 

 

Reprinted with permission from Blue Rise Media.

25 Brilliant Bloggers Talk About Google+ Hangouts

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Brilliant Bloggers is a bi-weekly series here at NMX where we look at the best posts from around the web all surrounding a specific topic. Every other week, we’ll feature a brilliant blogger, along with a huge list of more resources where you can learn about the topic. You can see more Brilliant Blogger posts or learn how to submit your link for an upcoming edition here.

This Week’s Topic: Google+ Hangouts

Whether you love Google+ or hate Google+, I think one thing we can all agree on is that their hangouts are pretty cool. And now that everyone has the ability to publicly broadcast on air, hangouts give both content creators and businesses some cool options, from hosting webinars to simply chatting with fans online.

Today’s Brilliant Bloggers are all talking about hangouts, so read on to find more information about hangout tips, hangout ideas, hangout etiquette, and more!

Brilliant Blogger of the Week:

shira gal My Google+ Hangout Experiment by Shira Gal

What I like about this post from Shira, who is a self proclaimed “Duru” (do guru – love that concept), is that she goes through the entire hangout process from start to finish, talking about some of the problems she experiences with her hangout, tips to make things go more smoothly, and whether or not Google+ Hangouts are a better option than Skype and GoToWebinar. She’s honest about the limitations of Google+ Hangouts, as well as the high points of her experience. Check out her entire post, then consider following her on Twitter at @shira_gal and, of course, circling her on Google+.

Even More Brilliant Advice:

Note: I usually only included Twitter handles here, but given the topic, I also includes Google+ profiles this week when I could find them!

  1. 4 Lessons from a Google Plus Hangout Moderator by Garrett Kuk (@garrettkuk / Google+)
  2. 5 Reasons Google Hangouts Are Cooler Than Skype For Video Chats by Tina Sieber (@tinasieber / Google+)
  3. 5 Ways To Use Google Plus Hangouts In Your Business by Arelthia Phillips (@PintopPro / Google+)
  4. 10 Ways B2B Marketers Can Benefit from Google+ Hangouts by Trevor Nolte (@trevornolte / Google+)
  5. Cameraman App for Google Plus Hangouts On Air by Sarah Hill (@SarahMidMO / Google+)
  6. Chris Brogan’s Google Plus Hangouts Tips – Live Video Chat For Business by Grant Crowell (@grantcrowell / Google+)
  7. Five Google+ Hangouts Features Businesses Will Love by Joseph Fieber (@josephfieber / Google+)
  8. Google Hangouts – A Creative Way to Increase Your Small Business by Jason Phillips
  9. Google Plus Hangouts On Air is a Killer App by John Jantsch (@ducttape / Google+)
  10. Google+ Hangouts: 4 Creative Ways People Are Using Group Video Chat by Amy-Mae Elliott (@amymaeelliott / Google+)
  11. Google+ Hangouts On Air and the Education On Air Conference by Melissa Venable (@melissa_venable / Google+)
  12. Google+ Hangouts On Air = Awesome for Your Business by Larry Snow (@SJCWebDesignLLC / Google+)
  13. Google+ Hangouts On Air Tips by Ray Hiltz (@newraycom / Google+)
  14. Google+ Hangouts On Air: What Marketers Need to Know by Mike Delgado (@mikedelgado / Google+)
  15. Google+ Launches Hangouts on Air to the Masses: What Marketers Need to Know by Pamela Vaughan (@pamelump / Google+)
  16. How Google Plus Hangouts can Help Your Business by Paolo Tosolini (@tosolini / Google+)
  17. How to Hold a Google+ Hangout and Why You Should by Marc Pitman (@marcapitman / Google+)
  18. How To Use Google Plus Hangouts On Air For Your Business by Luis Galarza (@luis_galarza / Google+)
  19. How To Video Podcast Using Google Plus Hangouts by Rob Jackson (@phandroid / Google+)
  20. Minding your Hangout Manners by James Fierce (@Fierce_Living / Google+)
  21. The Freelancer’s Ultimate Introduction to Google+ Hangouts by Laura Spencer (@TXWriter / Google+)
  22. Using Google+ Hangouts For Business by Sheryl Loch (@sherylloch / Google+)
  23. What People Are Using Hangouts For Other Than Hanging Out by Alex Growwman (@GrossmanAJ / Google+)

Did I miss your post or a post by someone you know about Google+ Handouts? Unintentional! Help me out by leaving a comment below with the link.

Next Brilliant Blogger Topic: Tumblr

I’d love to include a link to your post in our next installment– and if you head to the Brilliant Bloggers Schedule, you can see even more upcoming posts. We all have something to learn from one another, so please don’t be shy! Head to the schedule today to learn how to submit your post so I won’t miss it.

How Will You Use Open Google+ Hangouts?

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Recently, Google opened up Google+ Hangouts so everyone can broadcast on air (previously, this function was only available to a select few). Hangouts are the best Google+ function in my opinion, so I’m excited to see this change. When you’re hanging out, you can also embed to stream on your site, and it will record and post to YouTube automatically. Here’s a video showing what people are doing with Google+ On Air Hangouts:

So the question is…how will you use this new function? Here are just a few ideas for online content creators:

  • Run weekly online course
  • Broadcast a webinar to promote a product
  • Hold a Q&A session with fans
  • Hold weekly meetings for a virtual club or group.
  • Record podcasts live

And of course…you can just hang out with friends and fans online this way, allowing others to join or just watch if they are too shy.

How will you be using Google+ On Air Hangouts? Leave a comment below!

Feeling unsure about being on camera? Check out Perry Lawrence’s Video Podcasting session at BlogWorld New York this June. We also have a complete Web TV track you can check to learn more about making the most of videos online.

Google and The Borg Have More in Common than You’d Think, At Least on YouTube

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You will join Google+. Resistance is futile. At least, if Google has anything to say about it.

Google is currently testing out a new “like” button for YouTube so users will be forced to join Google+ if they want to give videos a thumbs up rating. If you aren’t logged in, you can still watch videos, but you can’t rate them. Not everyone is seeing this button change yet (for example, I still have the old like button), but more and more people are starting to notice this change.

If you haven’t seen it already, celebrity blogger and Star Trek alum Wil Wheaton recently posted a pretty strongly-worded message to Google on Tumblr after becoming aware of the new button:

Oh, go f*** yourself, Google. This is just as bad as companies forcing me to “like” something on Facebook before I can view whatever it is they want me to “like.”

Just let me thumbs up something, without forcing me to “upgrade” to G+, you d***heads.

He elaborated upon that rant in a longer post on his blog, saying,

By crippling functionality on sites Google owns (like YouTube) and forcing users to “upgrade” to a service that they may not want or need to get that functionality back, Google is making a huge and annoying mistake.

Amen to that. Google+ is not dead, but I’m guessing the company has been disappointed with this network so far. Based on the hype when it initially launched, I think they expected it to take over Facebook and perhaps even Twitter. While Google+ isn’t a failure (yet), it also hasn’t really done those things. Super intelligent, long conversations possible on Google+, but the general public is still sticking with Facebook for now, at least for the most part. Does that mean Google+ can never succeed? No. But at the moment, they’re fighting a losing battle and making poor decisions.

Google is  like a cornered animal. Instead of being smart and coming up with a good get away plan, they’re just peeing all over in fear and charging at your face snarling, both of which are not good options.

The Google+ button on YouTube is an attempt to force people to use their network if they want to continue using a service they love (YouTube). But forcing people on the internet to do anything typically doesn’t work out very well.

Beyond that, Google isn’t seeing the big picture. Will some people break down and join Google+ if it’s necessary for YouTube liks? Maybe. But they aren’t going to use the platform in most cases. They’re just doing it because they have a gun to their back. They’re joining so YouTube is still functional. And those who don’t join Google+? They’re simply going to stop liking videos. That’s bad news for content creators, and what’s bad for the people putting videos online is bad for YouTube in general. Fewer likes = less funding for content creators = fewer videos = less traffic.

Assimilation by force never goes very well. On the other hand, if you create ingenious products and tools with the consumer in mind, people will be begging to join your ranks. Look at Pinterest. Millions upon millions of users have joined over the past few months and not one of them has been forced.

I think Neil Gaiman said it best in his reply to Wil’s post:

I wish Google would leave the Social Network thing to others. When Google does what it does, and does it well, it changes the world. When it rides bandwagons, it’s irritating.

Google has amazing abilities. Why do they have to take over every part of the Internet? Why be a jack of all trades when you already are the master of one?

I sincerely hope that Google rethinks this Google+ YouTube button. They can still put such a button there – just give us a way to like without connecting as well. I think that’s a fair compromise. But even better would be to simply leave the like button as it is currently. I’m on board with changes when they’re good, but this one just plain stinks.

What do you think of the new Google+ button on YouTube? If Google makes this change permanent, will you sign up for/log into Google+ so you can use it? Or will you just avoid rating videos from now on?

Original image (sans text) via thms.nl at Flickr’s Creative Commons.

Can You Create Better Content on Google+ Under a Pen Name?

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I’ve written about blogging anonymously (under a pen name) in the past, both here at the BlogWorld blog and on the Wright Creativity blog. I’ve made it no secret that I write and manage a fairly successful blog under a different name, and I think there are great reasons for doing so (though it is definitely not the right choice for everyone).

Today, Google announced that they’d now be allowing both nicknames and pseudonyms on Google+. This makes it much easier for anonymous bloggers to use the network, which will definitely be an advantage for Google as it continue to try to attract more users. But is it doing any favors for the Internet as a whole? Will this encourage the use of pseydonyms – and is that a good thing?

Critics had told me that they feel my pen name allows a certain level of dishonesty. Because I’m not writing under my real name, I’m not as accountable for what I write on my blog, and it also makes it easier for me to deceive people.

These things are true. Blogging under a pen name is powerful, and with great power comes great responsibility.

But I would argue that, online, it’s possible to deceive people whether you use your real name or not. I don’t believe that anonymous blogging makes a blogger more likely to be dishonest, but I do believe that some people find it easier to create better content if they are able to use a pen name – and that’s a good thing for our community of content creators.

Having more opinions or ideas is rarely a bad thing, but if people aren’t allowed to anonymously express those opinions or share those ideas, they’ll often remain silent. Depending on the topic, blogging can jeopardize your job or reflect poorly on your family and friends. A pen name allows your to write without the worry that you’ll be judged. This freedom can be liberating.

Some people abuse this power and use a pseudonym to be nasty to others, share confidential information, or do other unsavory things. Don’t allow these people to form your opinion of anonymous bloggers. There are bad apples in every bunch. Most of the bloggers who write under names other than their real ones simply don’t want to be defined by a single piece of content during their daily lives. The freedom of being able to use a pen name allows us to create better content on Google+ and in general.

I believe that Google+’s decision to allow nicknames and pseudonyms is good for the online community. What do you think?

Santa’s Ho Ho Hotline and Gmail Team Up

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Video message from Santa

Would you like to send someone a phone call from Santa? Now you can thanks to Santa’s Ho Ho Hotline and Gmail, who have teamed up together this Holiday season.

You can send a personalized Holiday phone call to anyone in the U.S. or Canada, as well as give Santa a call and leave him a message on his Google Voice number – 855-34-SANTA.

Google also announced on their blog, that anyone in the world can create and send a personalized video message from the big man himself – Santa. Check out their sample video to get some ideas.

Just go to SendaCallfromSanta.com and follow the instructions to create your video message. After you create your video, you can share it through email and Google+.

Santa has gone hi-tech! Happy Holidays!

Google+ Makes Improvements to Pages

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Google+_logo

Back at the beginning of November, Google announced they were opening up Google+ Pages, where brands and companies could connect with customers.

Since the launch, Google+ has been listening to feedback from its users and have made some changes.

Here are the Google+ Pages changes as highlighted on their official blog and in a video clip below:

  • You can now delegate up to 50 named managers as administrators for a page.
  • A new notification flow will ensure that these managers stay in the loop on all the activity that takes place on a page, giving managers the ability to stay involved in page conversations.
  • We’ll now show an aggregated count of users that have engaged with your page, either by +1’ing it or by adding it to a circle. This way, both you and your page’s visitors can get an at-a-glance summary of who is interacting with your page.

Google+ Update Improvements to Pages Video

Other improvements Google+ has made include:

  • Google+ Photos experience
  • Pump up (or down) the volume!
  • More useful and attractive notifications

Have you made a Google+ Page for your business yet?

The 12 New Media Days of Christmas 2011: 10 Google Plus Users a-Sharing

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google plus

During the 12 New Media Days of Christmas, we’re counting down the days until Santa comes by featuring some of the best blog posts of 2011 from awesome writers within the BlogWorld community! Skip to the end to read more posts in this holiday series and don’t forget to leave a comment if you’ve written a post about today’s topic!

Back in July, I did a huge link round-up on Google+ posts as part of our Brilliant Bloggers series. Since then, the platform has evolved and even more bloggers have weighed in with their opinions and advice about this social network. So today’s topic is Google+ and rest assured that I have some awesome links for you!

Post too long? Head to the Quick Links section for just a list of the links included in this post without all the analysis and quotes!

1. Google Plus – 5 Key Strategies to Get You Started by Wendy Moore at WendyMoore.net

If you’re brand new to Google+ and want to get started quickly, this is a great post to check out. Wendy covers five topics you need to understand to be successful on this platform. Since Google+ is slightly different from Twitter and Facebook, I really recommend you check out a helpful beginner’s guide before getting started. It’s much easier than wading through it yourself like I did the first few weeks! One of her great tips, for example, is about using keywords on Google+.

From the post:

Take advantage of keywords and phrases when posting content on Google +.

Keep in mind that Google Plus is powered by the king of search engines so what you’re sharing can be indexed. By using keywords, you can have a better chance of being ranked higher on Google searches.

After reading the rest of Wendy’s post, you can find more from her at Savvy Web Women. Wendy is also on Twitter @wendy_moore, and if you sign up for her mailing list, you can download a free copy of Savvy Success Tips: How to Use Social Media in Your Business.


 

2. Google Plus as a Storytelling Platform by Chris Brogan at ChrisBrogan.com

I don’t think it would be a valid list of top Google+ posts without mentioning something written by Chris Brogan! His Google+ presentation at BlogWorld with Guy Kawasaki was packed and for good reason – the guy knows what he’s talking about. He’s written tons of posts about Google+, but I definitely wanted to highlight this one, which talks about the value of this platform from a content marking standpoint. Writes Chris,

One great value of Google+ is that it makes a great platform for cultivating visibility. If your organization is hoping to “save a seat at the table” in between sales calls, one way to do this is to create compelling content that nurtures your business relationships by educating your community and by making them the hero in their own story. Said differently: If you want to nurture leads while they’re still at the wide end of the sales funnel, using Google+ is an effective addition to your content marketing strategies.

Chris is on Twitter @ChrisBrogan and you can also, of course, add him to your Google+ circles. He has a free email newsletter available to readers and is a the co-author of the New York Times bestseller book Trust Agents.


 

3. The Pros and Cons of Google+ Pages by Grandma Mary (Andrea Vahl) at AndreaVahl.com

If you haven’t yet been introduced to the Grandma Mary Show, you’re missing out! Grandma Mary is the alter ego of Andrea Vahl, and whatever her persona at the moment, I think this post is super smart. Google+ rolled out their new pages feature recently to allow businesses on Google+, but the system isn’t perfect – at least, it isn’t perfect yet. In this post, Grandma Mary goes over some of the points you need to understand about this platform if you want to create a page for your business, along with instructions for starting and whether or not you even need a page. From the post:

Why even have a page at all if you aren’t going to post there, aren’t going to circle anyone, and aren’t going to participate as your Brand Page?  If you don’t have time, if your audience isn’t there, then don’t create a Page, people!  This isn’t some land grab to see who can be in the most places at once!  If your customers are still all on Facebook, then stay on Facebook.  Take a poll – find out if they are over there!

Andrea is the co-author of Facebook Marketing All-in-One for Dummies and is the community manager for Social Media Examiner. You can also check out her various products to help you grow your business using social media. She’s on Twitter @AndreaVahl and @GrandmaMaryShow.


 

4. Public Posts: Are They Spam? by James Barraford at Media Tapper

This is actually a really interesting question, given that public posts are not only sent out to everyone who has you in a circle, but are also picked up by Google’s search engine. James weighs in with his opinion in this post, and also includes the opinion from some of his connections on Google+ about whether or not your public posts on this platform are spam. I think there are good arguments to be had on both sides of this debate, personally, and I certainly don’t want to see Google+ overrun with spammers and other undesirables. Still, I like to use Google+ for promotional purposes and almost all of my posts are public. So am I a spammer? Eek! Writes James,

The term spam gets tossed around a lot on Google Plus. I see it used frequently in situations where people don’t care for a particular post, thread, or superstar tech blogger. I don’t think I’ve seen a photograph of a beautiful mountain scene — that’s been shared dozens of times on my screen — be labeled as spam once. Have I seen +Robert Scoble resharers called spammers? You bet. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and often people forget they have the power of mute… or uncircle.

After checking out his post on Media Tapper, you can add James to your Google+ circles or follow him on Twitter @barraford.


 

5. Google Plus Tips & Shortcuts by Andrew Shotland at Local SEO Guide

Holy resource list, Batman! Pretty much everything you every wondered how to do with Google+ is on this list, with tips about everything from Chrome Extensions to Searching to Hangouts. I can’t accurate describe to y’all how gosh darn useful this list is, and although hasn’t been updated super recently, it looks like Andrew does occasionally come back to add more information. This is one to bookmark, folks! Seriously. Even if you’re not using Google+ right now, bookmark this post so that when you’re ready to jump on board, you can make the process SO MUCH EASIER. Here are just a few examples of the tips and trick he includes in this post:

- If you make a post aimed at your “Friends” circle, people in that circle who aren’t yet inGoogle+ get mailed.

– After you add a circle in the ‘share’ dialog, hover over it and an option will appear to ‘notify about this post’. That helps you control whether people get mailed.

– You can share your G+ posts to Twitter and Facebook with this Google Chrome Extension.

You can add Andrew on Google+ here, as well find him on Twitter @localseoguide.


 

6. Study: Will You Abandon Facebook in Favor of Google+ by Brian Solis at BrianSolis.com

I love Brian’s blog because his posts are so in-depth and packed with information and analysis, and this post is no different. Brian polled nearly 2,000 people to see if they would leave Facebook to commit to Google+ instead. Many people are calling Google+ a game-changer, but there are still so many people still getting used to Facebook; I’m not sure the general public is ready to jump ship just yet. Still, those of us in the new media industry set the trends for everyone else in terms of social media, so I think Brian’s study is an important one.  From the post:

As I noted in my initial analysis, Google+ is not a Facebook or Twitter killer and I don’t think that’s the right lens for which to survey the social landscape. In the U.S., we have a few top traditional TV networks, CBS, ABC, and NBC. In social networking, we now have three top social networks to compete for global online attention and interaction. In this example, none of the traditional networks successfully captured the attention of every viewer possible nor did one network kill the other. Instead, the programming of each network attracts people through content, creativity, and timing, defining, segmenting and sharing the audience around shared interests. The same can be true in social networking.

Brian on Twitter @briansolis and you can also add him to your Google+ circles. He’s the author of Engage and The End of Business as Usual, both of which you can pick up on Amazon.


 

7. Why Google Plus Pages (Will) Beat Facebook. And Twitter by Caleb Garling at Wired

While I’m not sure I necessarily agree (or at least, I’m not ready to make a call either way at this point), I think Caleb makes a really compelling argument in this post, which pits Google+’s new pages feature against Facebook and Twitter. In the past few months, Google+ and Facebook have grown more and more alike as the companies try to one-up one another, but Caleb makes a good point that Google has the advantage of, well, being Google. Will Google’s advantage not be in the platform itself, but rather in their ability to draw on their other departments to promote and integrate Google+ profiles? Caleb writes,

This is where Google will have an advantage over Facebook: With a broad array of services like search and Gmail and Chrome and Android, Google offers tools that are fundamental to the online lives of so many people — and these can be tied to Google+. As Google+ evolves, Google will have the means to promote its social network — and the branded Pages within it — in ways that Facebook or Twitter cannot.

Check out the rest of Caleb’s post on Wired and then head to Google+ to add him to your circles or find him on Twitter @calebgarling.


 

8. How to Hold a Google+ Hangout and Why You Should by Marc Pitman at Social Media Examiner

Marc Pitman is pretty much the coolest guy in a bow tie ever (okay…the second coolest), and this post makes me like him even more – it’s everything you need to know about using Google+ for hangouts. I’ve personally never done it before, so I found his advice (and easy-to-follow instructions with pictures) super helpful. Actually, his post makes me want to check out this whole hangout thing, which is a real feat in itself, because I don’t really like being on camera (turning on my webcam makes me nervous!). From the post:

We all know that people only purchase from us when they know, like and trust us. That used to mean we needed to go to a lot of conferences to meet people. But a tool like Google+ Hangouts can help you do the interacting right from your desk. And as Google rolls out the ability to broadcast Hangouts, you’ll be able to extend your reach beyond the 10 people in the Hangout.

And as you do more Hangouts, and capture more images from those Hangouts, your company will stand out. People will know you’re approachable.

You can find Marc at The Fundraising Coach and add him to your Google+ circles, as well as follow him on Twitter @marcapitman. He’s also the author of Ask Without Fear, which you can check out if you’re interested in fundraising


 

9. Using Google+ Ripples to Connect with Influencers by Casey Henry at SEOmoz

This post outlines a really smart way to use Google+ and one that I don’t see many other people talking about. I think one of the benefits of Google+, especially over Twitter (my first love), is that it is less noisy, so there’s a better chance of getting through to the top people in your niche. Since I don’t use Google+ a ton (yet!), I haven’t really looked into Ripples and why it might be helpful, but wow – I think Casey hits the nail on the head when it comes to why you should definitely check it out. In this industry, networking is everything. Writes Casey,

Sometimes getting an influencer to share your content can be very difficult, if not impossible. Ripples provides an easy way for you to investigate who are the influencers of the influencers. Let me give you an example of how this might work in a real world situation. Let’s say I write a blog post on Google Analytics and am hoping to get Avinash Kaushik to share it, since he is a leader in the Analytics area. However, I don’t have a direct relationship with Avinash, so I need to find someone approachable who does.

After checking out how Casey goes on to use Ripples to connect with Avinash, you can check him out on Twitter @caseyhen. His personal site is GR Web Designs.


 

10. 14 Bloggers Share 14 Awesome Tips For Using Google+ by Srinivas Rao at The Skool of Life (guest post for Social Mouths)

Y’all know that my mouth waters when I see lists that feature advice from a bunch of different people, so this is definitely a post I wanted to share! In this guest post for Social Mouths, Srini talks to people like Kelby Carr, Karl Staib, and Angela England about how they use Google+ as a way to connect with readers, drive traffic, find interesting content, build their communities, and more. From the post:

I’ve been spending quite a bit of time on Google Plus and I’m finding that the quality of conversation with content creators is significantly higher there.

So I decided to put that theory to the test and ask some bloggers to share their best tips to on using Google Plus.

You can find Srini at The Skool of Life and BlogcastFM. He’s on Twitter @skooloflife, and you can add him to your Google+ circles here.


Quick Links

For those of you short on time, here’s a list of the links covered in this post:

  1. Google Plus – 5 Key Strategies to Get You Started by Wendy Moore (@wendy_moore)
  2. Google Plus as a Storytelling Platform by Chris Brogan (@ChrisBrogan)
  3. The Pros and Cons of Google+ Pages by Grandma Mary (@AndreaVahl/@GrandmaMaryShow)
  4. Public Posts: Are They Spam by James Barraford (@barraford)
  5. Google Plus Tips & Shortcuts by Andrew Shotland (@localseoguide)
  6. Study: Will You Abandon Facebook in Favor of Google+ by Brian Solis (@briansolis)
  7. Why Google Plus Pages (Will) Beat Facebook. And Twitter by Caleb Garling (@calebgarling)
  8. How to Hold a Google+ Hangout and Why You Should by Marc Pitman (@marcapitman)
  9. Using Google+ Ripples to Connect with Influencers by Casey Henry (@caseyhen)
  10. 14 Bloggers Share 14 Awesome Tips For Using Google+ by Srinivas Rao (@skooloflife)

Other posts in the 12 New Media Days of Christmas series will be linked here as they go live:

12 Bloggers Monetizing
11 Emailers List-Building
10 Google+ Users a-Sharing (this post)
9 Vloggers Recording
8 Links a-Baiting
7 Community Managers a-Managing
6 Publishers a-Publishing
5 Traffic Tips
4 New Media Case Studies
3 Must-Read New Media Interviews
2 Top New Media News Stories of 2011
And a Partridge in a Pear Tree

You can also check out the all the posts from 2010 and 2011 here, and don’t forget: If you wrote a post in 2011 about today’s topic (Google+), PLEASE leave the link in a comment below to share with the community!

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