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How to Use Google+ for Social Media Engagement

Among the newest social media sites, Google+ (often abbreviated as G+) hit 400 million users in September 2012, according to Vic Gundrota at Google. Even though Wikipedia reports that only 100 million Google+ users are active, that's still a lot of users.

Despite its large user base, Google+ can feel much more intimate than other major social networks. Google+ has a fast-moving stream, similar to Twitter, and it offers many of the same multimedia and interactive features as Facebook Pages. Yet Google+ conversations somehow manage to feel more interconnected than on Twitter and more cohesive than on Facebook.

Members of Google+ can communicate in a number of ways:

  • Post to their G+ streams, whether the posts consist of text, photos, videos, or links.

  • Add a +1 rating (similar to a Facebook Like) to posts or photos.

  • Share a post from someone else in your stream.

  • Comment on posts.

  • Text-chat within Circles.

  • Video-chat in Google Hangouts.

  • Live-stream video by chatting in Google Hangouts on Air.

You can also target messages to specific groups by using Google+ Circles or groupings of connections and create as many circles as you want.

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To become familiar with the features, try out Google+, and start with a personal account before expanding to a Google+ Business Page. Definitely reserve your G+ Page name now even if you don't start updating it. You can see that Red Bull posts photos and videos of extreme sports to its Google+ Business Page.

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