Like others, when Google+ first arrived, I signed up, tried it out, and never logged in again.
Several months went by, and I read that Google+ has more users than Twitter. I didn’t think that could be possible, I reasoned that this is probably due to the fact that many people have Gmail accounts, and as a consequence, a social profile was automatically created.
I recently downloaded the Google+ Android App and had a second look. I was presently surprised with the quality of content I was presented with.
Now, you may already be asking yourself why do I need another social networking account since I am already on Linkedin and Facebook? I would still encourage you to use LinkedIn and Facebook but let us not forget who dominates internet search. One can only assume Google will, and has already, started integrating their Google+ results into their search.
Why was Google+ created?
Facebook, and Twitter, among others, are social networking sites that have great content. The problem is, that they are closed communities, where search engines such as Google, Bing, and Yahoo cannot crawl them. At one point, Google integrated Twitter in their search results, but that relationship has since ended. Consequently, search engines are having issues bringing real-time search into your results.
For instance, at a major sporting event, Google cannot report fans opinions in real time. They can only report after a popular sports website publishes their results first, and then Google’s search engine has the task of finding and creating a link to it. Yet, with Twitter or Facebook, you can see what people are saying in real time.
Where do I begin?
After you’ve created your Google+ profile, be sure to fill in occupation, where you went to school, and the city you live in. The second step is to fill out the story profile. The story profile has a tagline, introduction, and bragging rights. The tagline is a simple description about you, the introduction is self-explanatory, and for bragging rights, I recommend putting in your academic and career accomplishments.
The next step is to fill in your work history. This is basically your resume. Be mindful of keywords you are putting in the skills and occupation section. For instance, if you are an accountant then what keywords will a recruiter search for? What occupations do recruiters or hiring managers look for? Choose keywords carefully, as they make a difference between your resume going in the right or wrong direction.
Develop your profile
When people click on your profile, what do you want them to see? Like any social media site, you can share articles you’ve read and enjoyed, but be aware that prospective employers may see what you post. I would avoid posting negative comments, associations to political parties, and less than flattering photos. You should consider blogging about industry trends in your field, or publish any research papers you have written. With Google+ you can write a full blog, or have a link to your site.
Participate in Google Communities
Google Plus has communities that you can actively participate in. There are communities on almost any topic and it is easy to join. Always comment on articles you have read and show you are knowledgeable in your field by answering questions that others post.
More and more companies are building their profiles on Google+. By following a company, you will get an inside look at what is going on and their future products. Like in Google+ Communities, be sure to comment on any posts they have. There have been instances where people have found a job because they provide constructive criticism on company’s social profile.
Lets recruiters find you
Now that you have posted valuable content in your field and developed your resume, let’s see what the hiring manager or recruiter will see. Imagine I am a recruiter, and I am searching for an account manager on Google+. I type in “Account Manager Toronto” and click on People and Pages. Google+ displays hundreds of account manager profiles. Remember, by using keywords in your resume, the hiring manager will easily detect your attributes over others.
Searching for Jobs
Often, recruiters post jobs on Google+, at the moment I was not overly impressed with the results, but I do believe that this will grow with time. What I did like, was the ability to comment on the job posted by the hiring manager, allowing instant communication. I believe, as Google+ grows in numbers, more and more recruiters will post jobs this way.
To Sum it up
LinkedIn has done a great job of keeping social professional. But from a hiring manager’s perspective, do you really get to see what the potential applicant is like on Linkedin? I always thought the resume was boring and impersonal. From being in the position of seeking new recruits, I found looking at people’s profiles on Google+ very beneficial. I got to see more than their work history, I got to see what the individual’s interests were and if they posted any interesting information associated with their field of expertise. Thus, indicating that they were following current issues and aware of new developments. Lastly, while you could argue that Facebook will land you the next job, especially considering that recruiters do use Facebook, it is worth noting that Facebook does not dominate internet search like Google does. Critically, Google+ is impossible to ignore now, especially as Google is now integrating Google+ into their search results.