This post is 3rd post in this G+ Crash-Course for Photographers Series. Find the other posts here!
This is my third article in this series. Since everyone who comes to G+ was first on Facebook, sometimes G+ can be extra confusing because Facebook has us programmed to do it their way! Posting is just one of those things that have a few little twists that we need to discuss. Here are the components of a Status Post, and the rules and etiquette involved:
The MESSAGE text
Content is still king. So it is a universal social media rule to be engaging with your posts, draw people in, and do your best to stimulate conversation.
That said, there are a few really awesome upgrades to the posts at G+. One is, while Facebook posts are not searchable, G+ post ARE, so you can craft your posts with keywords if you want them to be found on Google’s Search Engine. You don’t even have to make them hashtags for them to be searchable.
To help their robots in crawling your posts, they have provided a few formatting options for us, that helps robots get the point! First, keep in mind that the first line of text is considered your “Title”. You don’t have to use it that way, but if you have a topic and can make a title, use the first line and also BOLD it. That brings me to the next formatting tip…there are no little formatting buttons to click to make your text bold. But G+ has three text commands that you can use for Bold, Italics and Strike-through.
For Bold, *Surround the text you want to Bold with asterisks.*
For Italics, _Surround the text you want to Italic with underscores._
For Strike-through, -Surround the text you want strike-through with dashes.-
This is what it would look like if you typed the above exactly how I typed it, in your G+ post
Formatting just helps for the readability of your post, and getting your point across.
A word about #hashtags. Don’t overuse them. Try and limit yourself to three, or mix them into the text so they make more sense.
The ATTACHMENTS and LINKS
Pretty much every time you post, you need an image. Sometimes you will just upload a picture, but many times you are linking to a blog post. In the case of linking to a blog post, the same rules apply like they do in Facebook. You may need to delete the blog post preview and upload an image from the blog post. Just like in Facebook, you never know what you are going to get. You can either get a full width pic with the title of your blog post below, or you can get a tiny thumbnail with your title to the left. Here is an example:
I have no idea what makes the difference. But just be aware of it, because you do not want the preview on the right! G+ is so image based, and even though there will be some click-throughs to your blog, you will get a LOT more engagement when you post a single photo.
Think about it. People scrolling by who don’t want to click to your blog, will STILL +1 a photo that they like. They may also Comment or Share. You want all that love on your post, because it literally gives Google juice to that blog post, whether people clicked over or not! So put the link in the text of your message, delete the preview if it looks like the example on the right, and then post the best photo from blog post!
While Facebook just takes your post and does what it pleases with it (I think they are hiding my posts in a top secret file somewhere since no one sees them!), Google actually gives you choices. When you want to update your Status, you have to choose a “group” to send TO in the To: box. The choices are Public, Your Circles, Extended Circles, and then a list of your individual Circles.
Rule: Almost Always Post PUBLIC
Posting Public means that your posts will show up in the Newsfeeds of everyone who has Circled YOU. They chose to follow you and want to see your posts. If you don’t post Public, they have no way of viewing your posts unless you Circle them too and post to that Circle.
Posting only to “Your Circles” or one of your Circles means that your posts will ONLY show up in the Newsfeeds of people YOU have Circled…people you decided to follow. If they didn’t Circle you back, then they probably didn’t want to follow you. So now, you are actually spamming them because they are getting a Notification that says “Such & Such shared a post with you” up in their Notifications in the top left of their G+ panel.
When you post to a circle, and people get notified, you start to look like you are trying too hard. Other people are practicing good etiquette and respect for other G-plussers by not sharing this way, and they expect the same from you.
Every time you share this way, it will annoy them more. And even if they did Circle you back, people get annoyed when they get a notification every time you post. Just let them see it in their newsfeed. You posted it Public, and they will see it. If they miss it, that is better than sending a notification. Better to post it twice in one day on your Status to Public, than to send to Circles and have people get a notificaton.
There is an option for people to MUTE you if they find you annoying. And people who get notifications every time you post will mute you fast.
The only time to post to one of your Circles is if you have a specific message for that specific group of people. For example, I have a group that I might send a private message to once a month and also click the “Send and Email to” check box at the bottom. But those people know they are in this group, and why, and they know I”m not spamming them.
And last on this subject, if you don’t post Public, then Google will not be able to show your post in their search engine when people use your keywords because by chosing a Circle and not Public, you are essentially sending a Private message to a specified group of people.
Another type of posting is when you SHARE someone else’s post. This is a really awesome thing to do! Share great photography and great content that you love and think your followers will love. This is the greatest form of engagement with other G-plussers. But there are just a few things to keep in mind when you do it.
- Always mention the person who originally posted it in the text of your post. It increases their Google juices when you do, and most importantly, they will get a notification and will be able to see that you shared their content.
- I like to provide context to why I shared it. Is it a photo I liked…why did I like it? Was it a great article? Why?
Here is a recent SHARE post from my profile:
This particular subject has more to do with what your audience expects than any of my opinions. But many people say that on G+, good networking is that 20% of your posts should be your own content, and 80% should be sharing other people’s content. Since I don’t post multiple times a day usually, I don’t always follow that. But I usually don’t post more than once a day for my own content, and if I find great content to share, I love sharing it!
Do you have any questions about Posting on G+? Comment on my G+ post below!
This is an actual embedded G+ post. You can +1 and comment right here!