Google+ is another social media platform. Whilst it doesn’t appear as popular as LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook it has one of the largest user bases and most people predict that it will become increasingly important in the future.
Whilst Twitter is popular in the professions for distributing content and prompting interaction, Google doesn’t use the material in tweets for its search engine whereas, not surprisingly, it does index material in Google+.
In many ways it is similar to other social media platforms as it allows you to share content – whether this is blogs, videos, audiocasts, images or comments. But it is different in that it allows you to restrict who sees each post – so it can be made public so everyone can see it or just for specific friends or contacts.
Personally, I like Google+ because, unlike Twitter, you are not restricted to 140 characters so you can provide a little more information about the blogs, articles, videos and other content you are sharing.
Google+ uses the idea of circles so that you can arrange people you follow into groups. Some people have inbound circles – so that they can easily scan what people with a common theme are sharing (e.g. property, legal, taxation, dogs, art, music etc) and outbound circles so that it is easy to share material with people who are most likely to be interested in the particular content you are sharing.
A key feature in Google+ is that of hangouts. This enables you to connect with up to nine other people for a videocall where you can also view a shared workspace and watch videos or presentations together. These hangouts can be broadcast to a wider audience by using “on air” facilities or even recorded.