The Hello Bar is a simple notification bar that engages users and communicates a call to action.

Google Plus – This Time I’m Doing It Differently

Google plusWe all make mistakes. I know I have made my fair share of them. Given the choice I would do some things over – differently. Like that time I went bombing (that’s when you throw snow balls at passing cars, at least that’s what we called it in New York) of all the cars, I hit my mom’s best friend driving by in her brand new black Ford Escort – my friends and I ran until I heard Stephen Daniel Garner! – CRAP, Busted. Sure, it’s fun hearing about it 23 years after the fact but still, I would have done it differently if I could.

Another thing I would do differently is in regards to social networks – like oh, say – Facebook. Last week I was one of the lucky ones to give Google Plus or Google + however you have come to know it a spin. I like it. It’s different than facebook, I can’t say better at this point but different is in a way better. When I joined facebook I LOVED IT! I was able to connect with old high school friends, college friends, Navy buddies etc. It was great! I could go there and see what my “friends” were up to and get an inside look at what was going on in my old school stomping ground – Syracuse, New York – what’s up fellas! Anyway, that was then and this is now. Lets talk about what my NOW on facebook looks like and why I am going to do things differently this time around with Google plus.

When I log into facebook, like most people – I do so to catch up with old friends, see what is going on in their lives, what recommendations they have for me – ya know, movies, restaurants, products etc. But there is a problem. I am constantly annoyed by people I don’t know, rather people I don’t [really] know asking me to like their facebook fan page, paste something on my profile for the day to show support for something or come to some AMAZING event in Florida, did I mention I live in Phoenix? Oh and the real estate listings! I wrote about some of my challenges with Facebook in 10 Ways To Lose Friends And NOT Influence People. I am a former title rep for a national title insurance company in Phoenix Arizona, when I was a title rep I accepted every friend request from anyone and everyone. People I didn’t even really know. Sure, it’s great to have “friends” on facebook, at least I thought it was until my precious news feed, that valuable real estate on my profile started filling up with JUNK. “Beat the bank! Check out this beauty! Honey, stop the car!“We’re the best real estate brokerage” “Congratulations to these 1,000 agents that have joined XYZ REALTY” I know other consumers were annoyed by the same things because I started noticing searches on my website – through Google for “How To Remove Real Estate Agent From News Feed”. Even better [or worse actually] the people that update facebook for the sake of updating – “I just had a sandwich! I have to go to the bathroom. Obama is an idiot. Democrats suck! I’m tired”. Ya know, those kind of updates that don’t really serve any purpose – for me. And lets face it, it is all about me. Logging into facebook becomes a chore when people I really don’t know, businesses and brands want to sell me something – something I didn’t ask for. It’s no different than being forced to wade through the junk mail at home to get to the stuff I really want – or need, like bills, checks [hopefully] and explanation of benefits. So this time around I am doing it differently.

As I said, I joined Google plus last week and it is really cool, I know all the facebook fanboys are not going to like hearing that but I really like it. One of the things I like is the privacy settings, ya know – that’s the thing that facebook clearly forgot about or maybe didn’t even care about. I can separate my connections on Google plus into Circles. Circles is all about sharing, but not about sharing with a mass group of “friends”, but instead targeted sharing with my various social groups. What ever Circles I have created: Friends, business, affiliates, realtors, loan officers, what ever I want.

Hangouts. Hangouts is Google’s group chat feature. Instead of asking a friend on Google plus to join a group chat, I can “start a hangout” and I’m instantly in a video chat room all alone. At the same time, a message goes out to my social circles, letting them know that a friend is “hanging out.” The result is my friends can join in if they want. Did I mention it’s VIDEO chat?

Sparks. Sparks is a recommendation feature for finding interesting content. The sparks feature is a collection of blog posts, photo’s video’s, and other content grouped by a similar interest. For example, the “real estate” spark will have a listing of recent and relevant content about real estate.

Mobile. This is something that is currently missing for apple fanboy’s like myself. I understand there is a Google + application for Android Mobile devises but nothing for iPhones as of yet. This is something that will make breaking up with facebook a lot easier.

So as you can see Google plus is pretty darn cool. I’m actually looking forward to spending more time on it and away from the “f” word – facebook. Facebook is and always will be an important part of my life both business and professional but I’m really looking forward to doing it differently with Google plus.

What about you? Do you see yourself using Google plus?

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Hi I'm Stephen Garner, I'm just a guy in the title industry {in Phoenix} trying to change how real estate agents market themselves and their services. To that end, I teach my clients HOW TO leverage sales technologies like WordPress, Content, Video, Camtasia, Final Cut X, iMovie and indexable IDX solutions to convey value and help your ideal client find you online when they are most interested in learning about you and your services. I work for escrows. Hire me!

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  • Jeremyrsmith01

    “Soooo much laundry to fold and then cleaning bathrooms….ugh!”

    -Every stay at home part time real estate agent/juice rep errrr multi level marketer.

    • Stephen Garner

      Exactly Jeremy. I took this littleGem off FB a few minutes ago ”
      It’s a great start to week… i am ready to start teaching my Open For
      Business …………..I love my life!!@@”
      WHO CARES?