Thursday, April 9, 2015

Google Plus Tips: Communities at #GrowingCirclesHop

Welcome to our 61st G+ Growing Circles Hop!
Today we continue along with our series of Google+ Tips, sharing some basics about G+ Communities for Week 5.

Using social media, we love a good sense of community. Facebook has "groups." Google Plus has "communities." The idea for the two is essentially the same - a sense of community, being part of a group with a common interest or goal. Communities offer a place for users to share ideas, ask questions, get answers, be social and network.

To get to Communities, you can choose the option from the drop down menu within your profile view.

Once there, you might see communities you've been invited to join at the top. Below that, communities you've already joined. And at the bottom, you should see recommended communities under the title "Discover Communities." These are recommended to you by Google, based on your interests or other communities that you've joined. (You can also get to the recommended communities from the top navigation bar.)

At the top right corner, directly below the navigation bar, you can search for communities with the search box and type in key words (examples: blogging, handmade). If you don't find one that suits you, you have the option to create one of your own too!

Once you find a community and join it, this is what it looks like:

The example above is a Blogging Community that I created back when communities were brand new. It's called Blog It Up and is open to the public (so you are more than welcome to join). I must admit, though, that many times it is a "post and run" type of group, which is often frustrating for me.

There are all kinds of great communities for every kind of niche: mommy, parenting, fashion, makeup, food, blogger, products/services, small business/entrepreneur, blogger tips, business tips, social media, and even Google Plus!

I've labeled important highlights of a community page in the image: 

  • Pinned posts will be at the top, and they will show a green pushpin icon in the upper right corner. 
  • The community description is at the top right, where you can find all the details of the community. 
  • There is a categories list on the left sidebar, but I have found that the categories are rarely used. 
  • The notification setting is important. Once you're in a community, if you don't turn off the notifications, you'll receive an email with every member post or comment. Your inbox can become quickly overflowing with these (trust me!).

Now that you know the basics of G+ Communities, we encourage you to browse and discover. There are many great communities that offer lots of helpful information. 

If you have any questions, please leave them in a blog comment. =0)
If you find a great community, come back and share it with us!

~ Kim, 2justByou Blog

See our other Google Plus Tips in the series:

Week 1: What is G+?
Week 2: Importance of Circles
Week 3: Using Circles
Week 4: Categorizing Circles

Now, let's party!
Use our Party Hashtag when you share a public post as part of our party every week. Your G+ post could be our next Party Hashtag Feature! And remember: You need to use the party hashtag AND link up. =0)

*** We're also extending the party. It will stay open until Friday night at midnight, EST! So don't be shy, come and visit on Friday too, and search our party hashtag in G+ to see awesome content for TWO days instead of just one! Share your posts!

Please welcome our April Co-Host, food blogger Marilyn from Marilyn's Treats! Be sure to add her to your circles.

Don't forget to use the party hashtag:


To make the most of this link party, please follow the rules below.
1. You MUST add your hosts and co-hosts to one of your circles before linking up. 
2. Link up your personal Google+ profile, blog or business G+ pagesOR -- you can link up a specific G+ post of yours - but NOT your blog URL. 
3. Publicly share a post - (new or old) on G+ and use the party hashtag #GrowingCirclesHop
4. Connect with others by clicking on your #growingcircleshop hashtag, or enter "growingcircleshop" in the search box at the top. Engage with at least 2-3 others by a Share, +1 and/or Comment. 
5. Add new friends to your circles! Be social. 
6. Grab a button for your blog, if you'd like. Help us spread the word so we can keep trending on Google Plus each week! (You can edit size to fit your blog in the code).
Check back on G+ and +1/comment on the party posts with our hashtag #growingcircleshop until Friday night.

LINK UP below!!! You can now link up your G+ profile page -OR- you can link up a specific G+ post that you've already publicly shared using our party hashtag!  

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Biz W said...

I sure appreciate the G+ tips because I'm pretty new to it and quite clueless :) Joining in on the party for the first time. Thanks for hosting!

Angelique Ouellette-Tower said...

Thanks again for hosting & for sharing your wonderful google+ knowledge
PS - If you haven't hopped on board the Great Blog Train there's still time - we are traveling to British Columbia CANADA:

Heaven Smiling said...

Thanks, Kim!

The Art Bug said...

So helpful G+ tips, Thanks for hosting and sharing!

Katie Crafts said...

Thanks for all these tips! Google+ is one of the things that kind of gets away from me, so the info is good to have!

Candace Creates said...

I was so glad to see this is going to be today too! I was in bed sick all of yesterday. Thanks for the tips and the party, Kim! It's always great to join you.

Natalia Khon said...

Great web-sites to browse!

lorenabr said...

Very cool tips!