Google Plus is a great way to connect with friends and business associates, and Google is taking some big steps to make G+ an essential business tool. Google Places has been moved to Google Plus Local, there’s now the ability to manage pages for your organization, and of course there’s Hangouts – which is probably the funnest and most useful tool on Google’s social network.
Here’s a quick getting-started guide for Google Plus.
Step 1: Get a Google Account
If you already have a gmail account, you’re all set — proceed to step 2. If you don’t have a Google Account, you’re 2 minutes away from having one – just fill out your name and username (note that you need to use a real name on Google Plus, so no “firstname.lastname@example.org.” Visit the Google Account Signup Page and come on back.
Step 2: Visit Google.com/+ and get started
Next, just go to google.com/+ and follow the instructions.
The rest of the setup is pretty self-explanatory… you’ll need to:
- Add some friends (or skip this step for now)
- Follow some interesting people and pages (Google will prompt you that “you might be lonely” if you don’t choose to add anyone yet, but you don’t need to add folks just yet if you don’t want)
- “Be awesome” (Google’s words) by adding a photo to your profile (I highly recommend this — if you’re going to use G+ you may as well be the real you), adding some details about where you work, went to school, and where you live (Google uses this to suggest people to connect with).
When you’re done with that, you’ll get access to a handy tutorial/feature tour with some easy videos. Check them out, it will be worth your time.
Step 3: Try Hangouts
If you click on “Get started” as shown above, the first thing you’ll see is an invitation to “Hangout face-to-face with friends.” G+ will show you where to click — in the upper right on “Start a hangout.”
From there, you can try a hangout. The first time you may need to install some software – don’t worry, it’s easy.
There’s lots more to learn, but that covers the basics. Hope to see you on Google Plus soon! You can find BizzyWeb at google.com/+BizzyWeb. Be sure to add our page and our team to your circles!