Google+ is a lot more fun when you’ve been added into relevant circles.
Sure, it’s great to be added into hundreds of circles because you’ll get more visibility for your posts, but it’s more important (in the long run) to get added into relevant circles by people who care about what you’re posting.
You see, by networking with people who share your interests will lead to more meaningful interactions for you inside Google+.
Here are 8 tips to help you get into relevant circles today . . .
1. Optimize your profile to inform others about you.
If you want to get added into relevant circles, you need to introduce yourself in the “About” section of your profile. What do you do? What are your interests? What type of content do you write or share? If you don’t tell others about yourself, it’s difficult for people to circle you — or even know what type of circle to add you into.
2. Circle people who have similar interests as you.
On way to start getting active and noticed in Google+ is to find interesting people to follow and engage with. Simply circling them doesn’t mean they’ll circle you back, but you might eventually get circled by engaging with them with thoughtful comments. Here are some sites to help you find interesting people on Google+ . . .
You can also find people by topic when conducting a Google+ search and selecting “People and pages” to see who Google recommends you check out.
You will also get suggestions on who to follow by going to your current circles and selecting “Find People” to see who Google recommends you should follow.
And you can find thousands of people who are in shared circles (by topic) in this Google spreadsheet managed by Chris Porter.
3. Circle pages that you find interesting – and interact with people there.
Now that Google+ introduced pages, you can now join conversations with people who share a similar interest by circling those businesses, organizations, or topical pages that you find interesting. It’s a great way to find more people you might want to circle, as well as participate in a bigger conversation that can get you noticed when writing thoughtful/useful comments. You can find pages by searching for a topic in Google+ and selecting “People and pages” (similar to finding people in the above screenshot). Pages are signified with a gray box next to the name. For example, here’s how our page listing looks:
(As a side note: I hope Google+ makes it easier to search for only pages rather than mixing in people since it’s not that easy to find pages yet.)
4. Comment on relevant posts in your stream.
Don’t comment on a post just because the person is popular. Sure you might get seen more, but you could also get lost in the crowd. Focus on adding thoughtful comments to whoever posts something that really interests you. In fact, you’re probably more likely to get circled back (and get more future interactions) by someone who doesn’t follow that many people – or have many people commenting on their posts. Don’t focus on activity of comments and shares, focus on adding to the conversation of thoughtful posts anywhere.
5. Share interesting posts with your followers.
If you really like someone’s post, and think it could add value to your community — share it with your circles. Sharing interesting content not only helps you bookmark valuable content for yourself, but also can get you noticed and circled back because your name can get attached to the original post. For example, this morning I posted an article in our new circled.us page about an article to help new Google+ users. Minutes later, Engage Media shared it and commented to let me know. Their activity in sharing my content caused me to check them out — and eventually follow them back.
6. Optimize your posts with hashtags.
Another way to get found in a Google+ search is by adding keyword hashtags to your posting (similar to joining a topical conversation on Twitter). You simply tag your post with a “#” and keyword (e.g. #googleplustips, #food). Now when people search for topics and/or search for hashtags on that topic, you could show up and get noticed.
7. Update regularly.
Aside from having a good profile page, it’s important to show that you’re active in Google by posting useful content regularly. Posting regularly is especially important if you want to stay circled with people who uncircle inactive people from their account. During Spring cleaning, some people start uncircling inactive people who aren’t active in their stream to make room for others. They can either sort people in circles by those that recently updated — or use the “Uncircle Inactives+” Chrome plugin to remove inactive people in bulk. If you haven’t posted recently, you could get dropped in bulk this way.
8. Promote your Google+ profile in relevant places.
Let others know about your profile by adding a link to your email signature. Also link to it in other social networks to let others know about your Google+ profile in Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. You can also promote it by linking to it when you comment on blog posts.
Above all, remember it’s not about the number of people that circle you, it’s about getting circled by people that share your passions and interests. That’s the group you want actively following, and the group that will be interested in the content you produce.
Special thanks to the following Google+ members who contributed their thoughts in my #CircledSurvey: Shannon Bolin, David Bleecher, Jeneva Ray, Tasha Schmidt, Anja Austermann, Dawn Mentzer, and Katie Elson Anderson.
What advice do you have to help others get circled? Share your thoughts here.