I know what you’re thinking. I just spent more than 1,200 words talking bad about Google and now I’m writing about them again. Well, not quite. Strange as it seems, I can separate Google Plus, or G+ from this point on, from the other monster, even if there are some connections that are fairly sneaky. To me, G+ is a social media site, and thus I see it differently than Evil Empire #2 (after the New York Yankees).

I’ve started to gain a new appreciation for G+ over the last few days or so. And it’s all come from a fluke that I didn’t know about, that I’d perceived meant something else, and it’s actually been working pretty well for me in one way, and it’ll take time before I notice if it’s working for me in other ways.

Whenever I had been posting anything on G+, I was selecting specific circles of people to allow to see it. Suddenly though, I started getting messages whenever certain people were posting content, and I realized I was getting notifications because I’d been included in a specific circle of someone who wanted me to see what they were posting. What I thought happened is if those people signed on and checked that particular circle they’d see what I’d posted; it never occurred to me that anyone might be getting notified by email that I had included them in on something.

I wanted to stop doing that because, well, I was now getting irritated by having things always being sent to me, especially by people I didn’t really know all that well, but knew well enough to include in a G+ circle. But try as I might, I couldn’t figure out how to get it done without having to select a circle.

What did I do? I went to Twitter of course, and I threw out the issue there. The only response I got was from a local guy who said he never had any problems posting anything without having to select a circle first. So I tried a few more times without success and it was driving me nuts.

That is, until I noticed the setting “Public”. I’d never noticed it before, and strangely, after I did notice it I thought I’d be blasting anything I posted out to the masses. Instead, what I learned is that if you select public, it puts out the message for anyone that has you in their circles to see. You’re not sending it to anyone in particular, and that’s exactly what I wanted to do.

And then a curious thing happened. I started having people commenting on some of my posts and sharing them, even +1’ing them (who ever thought that would become a verb?). And some of these people I didn’t know, as they had me in one of their circles but I hadn’t added them for my own reasons, but this was something new, something I hadn’t expected. G+ really hadn’t been all that social before; now it seems to be more social than ever, so much so that I added a G+ follow button underneath the Twitter bird to the left.

Over the last few days I’ve added anyone who’s +1’d something I put up or shared or said something to me to a circle. And get this; G+ has moved into the top 10 referrer list as far as driving traffic to this blog, whereas they were nonexistent in the month previous. It’s also become the #4 referral for my business blog; stunned.

Now it seems I may need to come up with a strategy for working on G+ as opposed to the random things I’ve been doing there. At least it’s finally in the conversation stage. Maybe you should think about it as well; I know our buddy Ileane has been talking about it a lot lately, especially when it comes to a new feature called Google Hangout Live, and it seems she knows what she’s been talking about.

Well of course she does! 😉
 

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