Thursday, August 23, 2012

Thursday Review—Google Plus, One of My Favorite Social Media Networks

Google Plus has given us more control over how we classify our networks through circles. We don’t simply have to friend someone or follow them. With this network we can decide when, where and how we interact with them.

For me this difference is key and it’s intuitive. At least for me, I already group the people I interact with into categories. True, some fit in multiple categories, but even that is possible with Google Plus Circles.

Also, in the Google search engine, everything you post has extra SEO. (Search Engine Optimization – how high your post ranks when someone searches for that topic or for you).

Another thing I really love about Google Plus is the Hangouts. It’s a place where you can video chat with up to ten people at once—and it’s free. You can even record and broadcast from this feature.

If you don’t have a Google Plus account yet, you can go to to sign up, or view your account.

Once there, you need to fill in your profile. Most important—upload a photo. Remember, only spammers and newbies don’t have a profile photo online. You also will need to choose your cover photo. There are several defaults to choose from, or you can upload your own photo.

Now you'll notice a line of seven or eight icons that you’ll need to become familiar with:
  • The first looks like a house and it’s your HOME key. 
  • The second is a circle with a head inside it. This is your PROFILE button. When you click this you go to your profile. When you want to change your profile you click this button then the EDIT PROFILE button. 
  • The third looks like a compass and is a place to explore Google+ 
  • The fourth is a calendar and it’s where you can add events. 
  • The fifth is a camera and it’s where you can upload photos 
  • The sixth is s stylized square and only occurs after you’ve added a professional page. 
  • The seventh is two interlocking circles and this represents your CIRCLES. Circles are the way you categorize and organize your friends and acquaintances. It’s what makes Google + different from Facebook. You don’t have to have different accounts to keep everyone separate—you only have to put them in different circles. 
  • The eighth icon is a local tab that recommends businesses and things local to you. 
Today we’ll concentrate on your profile.

Click on your PROFILE button and then your EDIT PROFILE.

Upload a photo.

Give a quick introduction about who you are.

Fill in your occupation.

I also recommend you fill in the following fields
  • Your email address. 
  • Your nickname (if different from your legal name). 
  • Profile discovery—if you’re trying to work as a freelance writer or get known as an author you need to make your profile discovery PROFILE VISIBLE IN ANY SEARCH. 
  • Website 
  • Twitter Link 
Here’s a quick note about circles.

Google Plus comes with several default circles:
  • Friends. 
  • Family. 
  • Acquaintances. 
  • Following.
I started with these defaults, but almost immediately began branching out. Now I have fun with it. I have a circle for besties (a complete girl term), buds and even terminally boring. And the greatest part is no one knows the category I’ve put them in.

So let’s back up and I’ll tell you how to operate your circles.

Go to your Google Plus page and click on the Circle Icon.

You’ll see several clickable links under the standard icons:
  • People in Your Circles. 
  • People Who've Added You. 
  • Find People. 
Click on Find People and the list of names below these will increase. You can also include people from other address books.

To add someone to a named circle, just drag and drop them inside the circle. If you want to start a new circle, add them to the unnamed circle. You can click on that circle and name it at any time.

If you click on a circle you can rename it or remove people from it. To remove someone just drag and drop them outside the circle.

Please feel free to add me to your circles! You can find me under Edie Melson. I'd also like to add you. Be sure and leave a comment telling us about your experience with Google Plus, and your Google Plus account name.

Don't forget to join the conversation!


  1. Thanks for the scoop, Edie! I rarely get on Google+ but I just read that they're the year's fastest growing social media network. Looks like I need to spend a little more time over there.

    1. Susan, it's a small but very dedicated group at Google+. And I'm totally in LOVE with the hangouts! Thanks for dropping by, Blessings, E

  2. Thank you for the great post. You shared some good tips. I have kept in one of my files to review. Thanks again, God bless you

    Glenda Parker

    1. Glenda, I'm glad it's been helpful. I'm looking forward to your series with Jaime. Blessings, E