5 Tips for Using Google Plus Communities Effectively (for Google+ Community Members)

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Google+ Communities - A Rich Medium

Google+ is awesome, in my opinion. And so are Google+ Communities. They provide an extremely rich medium to connect with like minded people, or individuals working in same field or with similar interests. Google Plus Communities can be used for targeted promotion also, since you know the common interest of the people visiting a particular community.

If you’ve just started using Google+ Communities, you might find these tips useful. Please check them out, and if you find them useful, leave feedback in the comments box. If you don't find what you're looking for, please post your question in Google+ Help community. You could try posting it here in the comments box too, I'll try to help you the best I can.

Want to Show off your Community Shares? But be aware of duplicate posts on your Profile's Posts Tab
Want to Show off your Community Shares? But be aware of duplicate posts on your Profile's Posts Tab | Source

1. Avoiding the Display of Same Post Multiple times in your Posts Tab

This is something that beginners will not quickly realize.

On Google+, while sharing a post with a Community, you won't be able to share it with your Circles. In fact, you can share a post with only one community at a time.

That would typically result in sharing a post multiple times - with different communities on same topic, and with your Circles and/or Public.

Although, your community shares will not be shared with your circles, but your Profile's Posts Tab is a different story altogether.

The repeated shares will be reflected on your “Profile” - Under “Posts” tab - and a visitor would see same posts shared many times. To avoid this, simply uncheck the “Show your Google+ communities posts on the Posts tab of your Google+ profile.” as shown in the image.

This option is enabled by default. Unchecking it will make sure that the posts you share with any communities are not visible on your profile page. But if you do want to show off your communities shares, you'll have to leave this checked.

It is advisable to share a post with Public, or your circles first and then with any communities, so that if someone in the community checks your post and comes to visit your profile, s/he is able to see that post in your profile’s context too. Moreover, post on your profile will show the number of shares, the larger this number is, the better impression you create on visitors.

To make this change, go to: https://plus.google.com/settings

Why Share Multiple times?

You can share with only one community at a time. If you want to share with public or circles also, you'll have to share again.
You can share with only one community at a time. If you want to share with public or circles also, you'll have to share again. | Source

2. Sharing with a Community without Visiting it

Whenever you want to share a post, originally posted by you, or by someone else, with a specific Community you've already joined, you don't have to visit that community. Simply Click on “Share what’s new” (or on Share button on an already shared post) and then click inside the box labelled “To:”. Delete “Public” and “Your Circles” by clicking on crosses*

Now, click again in the box and you'll be presented with the options - “Your Circles”, “Public”, “Extended Circles” followed by all your circle names. Keep scrolling down, and you’ll see the names of communities you've joined with number of members in each.

Click on the community name, and you'll be asked to choose the section of the community in which you'd like to post. Click and Share, and you're done.

*optional step, since when you share with a community, you would anyway be presented with a dialog box, “If you share with people or circles, you can't share with a community” - click replace here if you hadn't deleted Public and Your Circles)

Post to a Community from Anywhere

The Communities you've joined will be displayed along with number of members when you click in the "To:" box and scroll down.
The Communities you've joined will be displayed along with number of members when you click in the "To:" box and scroll down. | Source

3. Searching for your Posts/Shares in a Community

Unchecking the option “Show your Google+ communities posts on the Posts tab of your Google+ profile.” as shown above, will cause your community shares are not showing up on your posts page. If you want to check out all your posts with a community on a later date, go to the community page, and search the community for your post by typing your name in the community search box.

This will list all your posts, also the ones with any activity by you (comments etc.).

But if you have a very common name, you might see posts by other people who share your name.

What have you shared till now?

Check what you've shared by searching for your name in the Community Page Search Box
Check what you've shared by searching for your name in the Community Page Search Box | Source

What Google has to say about Google+ Communities.

4. Post in the Correct Section / Sub-Topic / Category

The Community owner(s) might have created some Sections to categorize the posts in the community, check which section is relevant to your post before sharing.

You'll find a list of these sections in the right hand side, click on one and then share.

Even while sharing without visiting the community, like mentioned above, you can choose and post in the correct section. This keeps the community posts nicely organized, and the visitors can easily and quickly check the conversations/posts under a topic which they find the most interesting.

The community owner/moderators may delete your post, if it’s spam or is posted to the incorrect section.

Choosing a Relevant Section is Important

Help the Owner and Moderators to keep the community organized by posting in relevant section.
Help the Owner and Moderators to keep the community organized by posting in relevant section. | Source

Community Settings

Configure the Community Settings as per your Preferences. Share your community with others, invite others to join.
Configure the Community Settings as per your Preferences. Share your community with others, invite others to join. | Source

Yes, That's the HubPages Community, Have you joined it?

Have you joined the HubPages Community yet?

  • No, I didn't know about it, will join it asap! (Welcome in advance :D )
  • Yes I'm a member.
See results without voting

5. Community Notification & Other Settings

When you visit a community you’ve joined, you’ll see a bell icon along with text “Notifications Off” or “Notifications On” followed by a gear icon. Simply click on the bell icon and you can toggle between notifications on or off. If you’re joining too many communities and keep the notifications on, you’ll be buzzed all the time. So make sure that Notifications are on for only those communities which interests you most, and if you would not want to miss any posts from that community.

The notifications settings default to off for public communities, and on for private communities. So if you’ve joined a public community, then you don’t have to change the setting unless you want to be notified about each post in this community. And, if you’ve joined a private community, make sure that you configure this setting according to your preference.

The gear icon will let you invite more people to the community, or to share this community with one or more of your circles and/or other communities or public, leave the community if you desire, or even report Abuse.

Also, you can choose what amount of posts from this community would you want to see in your home stream. You can choose from Standard, fewer, or more according to the amount of interesting posts you think this community will have for you.

Feedback Time, please vote.

Did you find these Google+ Community tips useful?

  • Yeah I did, will be helpful in future!
  • No, didn't find what I was looking for. (Please mention your question in the comment box, I'll be glad to help)
  • Some of them were useful (Which one was your favorite? Mention in the comment box)
See results without voting

Conclusion: Share Posts Relevant to the Community

To utilize the full potential of Google+ Communities, always share posts which would be relevant to the community. That way, you can redirect traffic to your website, connect with like minded people, start interesting and valuable discussions and conversations.

While interacting with others at any Google+ Community, treat other members with respect and be kind. And off course, report any posts you feel are spam/irrelevant/posted to a wrong category/abuse etc. That will help the moderators to keep the communities organized, spam free and neat in general.

© 2014 Anusha Jain

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9 comments

agvulpes profile image

agvulpes 2 years ago from Australia

I have found the Google + thing very confusing ! However these tips above have cleared away some of the fog .

Thanks for the tutorial :)


anusha15 profile image

anusha15 2 years ago from Delhi, India Author

@agvulpes Google+ can be a little overwhelming for beginners, I agree, but trust me, the gain after learning is more than the pain's worth :)

I'm glad you found the tips useful. Thanks for stopping by and commenting.


Richard-Bivins profile image

Richard-Bivins 2 years ago from Charleston, SC

Great tips... I haven't been very active on G+ until recently but I'm starting to get the hang of it.


anusha15 profile image

anusha15 2 years ago from Delhi, India Author

@Richard-Bivins Thanks so much for your appreciative words. I hope your experience on Google+ is great :) Thanks again for stopping by and commenting


SatendraSaini profile image

SatendraSaini 2 years ago from India

nice post............................


Pat Hall 2 years ago

Ok I recently joined a community. I would like to thank them for invitation, but when you go to the community to leave comment it then goes to another box that shows discussion then different titles. So do I leave the thank u in discussion or go to the title the owner is under like beauty to leave my comment to thank them for invitation. Just a little confused.


anusha15 profile image

anusha15 2 years ago from Delhi, India Author

@SatendraSaini: Thanks for stopping by and commenting

@ Pat Hall: If you know the owner, and you want to thank him/her personally, than you can go to his/her profile page and leave a private message. But I think it would be beneficial for the community also if you rather create a public post in a relevant community category, Discussion looks just fine, and thank them in your post. That way, visitors to your profile will also know that you've thanked these guys for invitation. (Unless, off course, you have chosen the setting as shown above to not show your community posts on your Profile -- Posts tab.


Blackspaniel1 profile image

Blackspaniel1 21 months ago

I had no idea communities existed. I just share with the world, and have little attention to my posts.


anusha15 profile image

anusha15 21 months ago from Delhi, India Author

@Blackspaniel1 - That happens. Better late than never, and communities specially on G+, are a great means to share with the relevant and interested audience. Thanks for stopping by and taking out time to pen down your experience.

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