Monday, June 2, 2014

Google Plus 101: The Basics

Photo courtesy of Edie Melson
By Laurie Epps

There are so many social media forums, but how do I know which one's the most beneficial? For me, I follow writers such as Edie Melson, but I also follow trends. There's a few websites that I like to do that with, but I just googled it when I was starting out. You'll see if you do this, that the trends are pretty much the same no matter which one you choose.

So, to guide us through the pro's and con's is my mentor Edie Melson. We're continuing with our reading in her book, Connections: Social Media and Networking Techniques for Writers. The publisher, My Book Therapy is a great resource to learn writing techniques, enter contests, and learn how to create your fiction novel. It's a tireless resource that chalk full of industry insight.

Here's the low-down on Google Plus:

  • Google Plus is a new, and upcoming social media platform.
  • Google Plus is a cross between Twitter and Facebook.
  • As the name implies, Google Plus is powered by Google.
  • Therefore, anything you post to Google Plus has exaggerated SEO*.
  • Google Plus divides your friends into deliberate circles, but most of us compartmentalize people anyway.
  • The best part is that nobody knows what circles they're in.
Feel free to add me to your circles. You'll find me at:

Professional Page, or Personal Page?

  • Edie recommends that you start with a personal page, and add a professional page later.
  • The main difference is that on a professional page that you can't add someone until they've followed your page.
  • Like Twitter, you need to follow other pages you find relevant, and hope that they follow you back.
  • One of the biggest complaints about social media, is the confusion with privacy settings. A key advantage to  Google Plus is that the site allows you to customize your own settings.
  • To learn about the different options for privacy, check out pp. 100-101 of our text for exact instructions.

Connect Activity:
Spend a little time on Google Plus and get to know some of its unique features such as hangouts. Hangouts is special to google plus, and you can design a room where you and ten of your "besties" can hang out.

Come back next week, and we'll talk about Klout.

Laurie Epps is a recent graduate of Anderson University majoring in Creative Writing. Already Laurie is most published as a feature article writer, essayist, and poet. A seeker of beauty and world traveler, Laurie hopes to grow into a career in travel writing illuminating the many stories that make us human despite our differences. Currently, Laurie also has a Thoughtful Thursday column dedicated to the fine art of poetry.

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