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What’s Up With Google+?

Still scratching your head about this whole Google+ thing? Before you write it off, learn about how Google+ can help your site or business.

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Not wanting to be left out of the social media popularity club, search engine powerhouse Google offers users Google+. Oh great, another social media tool I have to master… or do I? Let’s go over a few Google+ features and highlights and see if it’s a right fit for your social media strategy.

The idea of Google+ was to offer a similar experience to Facebook. And this isn’t Google’s first attempt at social media (remember Google Wave and Google Buzz? Yeah, we don’t either). So what’s different this time around?

What is Google+?

In a nutshell, Google+ is a social media tool that attempts to integrate the whole Google experience. That means you’ll be able to connect with Gmail and Google Maps, without the fuss of additional accounts. Once you’re in Google+, you’re hooked into your friends through Circles. You can create different circles of family, friends and co-workers, that way, you can keep them separate.

Google+ is about connections, data and people. Instead of trying to knock Facebook out of the picture, Google is using this social media experience to gather more information about you. And before you get all Big Brother on us, this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. When Google gathers more data about us, it can give us a truly personalized web experience.

What is Google+ Good For?

If you’re a blogger, you’ll want to set up a Google+ account. Google incorporates Google+ in the search results – and considering that about two-thirds of people use this search engine, you want all the help you can get to pop up first. Another plus (get it?) is that you’re setting up a profile, you’ll be asked to upload a picture – this is super important! When some Googles you or your blog, your picture will come up beside your blog post on Google’s first page. It’s another way to add an air of professionalism to your name and what you do (we’ll go into setting this feature up in another article).

And remember when we said that in Google+, you can create circles that are made up of certain friends or connections? This is great if you’ve got a targeted message. Unlike Facebook, where your updates are broadcast to everyone in your friend’s list, you can send an update to a particular circle of connections. If you’ve got a deal for VIP customers, then send an update just to them. Or if you want to share a picture of the party you threw last weekend – well, that would be something to share with just your party pals.

Do you have your Google+ account set up yet? What’s your experience with this social media site? Do you think that Google has way too much information about you already? Leave us your thoughts in the comments section below.

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