This Week In The Google+ Help CommunityFinding your way around the Google+ galaxy
Hey everyone! Time for the latest Google+ Help Weekly Report
, where we discuss a trending topic within the Google+ Help Community!
This is a followup to a post I made in January 2015 about how to use circles https://plus.google.com/+GeorgeCohn/posts/BuSUhroey4o
.What is community, and why should I care?
In the context of the Internet, a community is a social group that share common interests regardless of physical location. In particular, people in an online community share ideas through conversations in posts, chats, video calls, and in person. On Google+, Circles were originally intended to model human relationships. Google+ Communities were added later to better support conversations around individual topics.
When you use Facebook it’s very easy to have conversations, because you’re already a part of established communities: your friends from school, family, etc. But when you first start using Google+ it’s like moving to a new city. You may not know many people at first, and you may feel awkward or feel like you’re talking to a wall.How can I find the conversations I want to be part of?
If you moved to a new city where you didn't know anyone, how would you go about meeting people? If you were interested in business relationships, for example, might you not join a local chamber of commerce? Or attend some public presentation sponsored by a non-profit that supports a particular industry?
It comes down to finding community. That’s done through conversations, and every conversation has a topic.
Many of those conversations take place in Google+ Communities. You can search for specific topics, for example “house music”, and find communities where the House Music conversations are happening. Or you could search for hashtags, for example #housemusic
, and find conversations around that topic.
Find the conversations, and join in them. Not necessarily as an expert, but as a person with passion for the topic (assuming you actually have the passion!).
Reshare the posts you feel strongly about. For best results, instead of just hitting Share, say what it is about the topic that’s important or interesting, and then hit Share. If you’re resharing a reshare, acknowledge the person who reshared it with a hat tip (h/t).
Start your own conversations, posting to Public or to a relevant Community that you've been participating in. Make sure you include a hashtag, so that your post can be found easily by anyone who might be interested, whether you already know them or not. At first you may not get much lively response, because you may not have yet built up much community around yourself. If you do see some action, give it plenty of attention. +1 the comments, reply back using plus-mentions, and do it right away. That way the person on the other end feels that you’re there.How long will it take me to get to know people well enough to be part of their community?
Probably weeks, if not months.Are there any shortcuts?
Yes. Get into hangouts. You can build relationships much faster when you can see and hear the people in the conversations you’re having. It’s the next best thing to meeting them in person, which by the way is the other shortcut.I’m interested in so many things. Should I focus on just one topic, or just go for it?
Of course, your choices depend on your reasons for being on Google+. Your topics will become your brand, the things you’ll be known for. In my opinion, if you choose a single topic and stick to it rigorously, you’ll be seen as a little boring. If you choose a huge diversity of topics you’ll be seen as unfocused.
Your best bet is to decide on a reasonable number of specific topics you’re interested, in consistently and persistently over time. Then go join in those conversations, curate and post about those topics.Anything else?
Keep in mind that relationships that take weeks or months to build can be destroyed in seconds, just like in real life. Be compassionate.► Tip of the WeekDid you know there’s a Google Dashboard that gives you a summary view of Gmail, YouTube, Google Docs, and more, all in one place?+Google+ Top Contributors
posted about it herehttps://plus.google.com/103006385532664768608/posts/XJ4fxpB6BtG
Thanks for all of your questions and insights this week. Special thanks to everyone who helped respond to these trending topics this week. Make sure to check back again next week when +martin shervington
will help to highlight the best questions and answers on the community. #weeklyreport #googleplusprotip #besthelpontheweb