How I’m Using Google+ as a Travel Blogger

Google+ (or Google Plus) has been in the social media news for the past couple of weeks. As a lover of shiny, new web stuff, I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it. I liked it immediately and there are a couple of things that have made my life easier as a travel blogger.

1. Sparks

This is where Google lets you track your interests. It’s similar to having a saved search in Twitter, but infinitely more user-friendly. I set up searches for airport parking, travel news and business travel and found some inspiration for blog posts that had eluded me via the usual channels.  That was a definite win.

2. Circles

Circles are like friend lists, but better. You can put people into circles according to how you want to segment them. People can be in more than one circle, too. And when you share things, you can share them only with the people who will be interested, rather than with everyone. You can even share with a single person (like a message). My initial impression is that it is much easier to follow a conversation in Google+ than in its closest rivals.

3. Hangouts

At the time of writing, I hadn’t used this yet, but it’s a great way to connect with up to 10 people using video or IM. Not only would this be good for business meetings (business profiles for G+ are on the horizon), but just to get together and talk about the things that interest you. You could have a regular travel bloggers’ hangout, for example.

Although initially my heart sank at the thought of yet another social network, after using it for a few days, I’m hooked. I’ve set up a circle with all my travel buddies in it (or as many as I’ve found so far.) I’m finding that I’m conversing with people whom I’ve followed at a distance and that’s terrific. If you’re on G+, then check me out here. (I’ll set up a business profile for Park Ride Fly USA as soon as they become available.) How have you found it so far?

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  1. Mack Reynolds Says:

    thanks for this post. i’ve been in the dark about what google plus actually is, so it’s good to see a brief summary of it’s offerings and uses. i’d like to use it for my own blog, but i’m just getting it started. props for taking action and getting into the thick of it.

  2. Sharon Hurley Hall Says:

    Hi Mack, there’s a bit of a learning curve but it’s easy to use and the quality of conversation is excellent. You know where to find me when you sign up! :)

  3. Mack Reynolds Says:

    haha thanks sharon! much appreciated!