Over the last few weeks, we’ve been delving into the world of social media and how it can be useful to nurses, whether they’re entrepreneurs or bedside caregivers. My first post was about social media in general, one post focused on Linked In, and the follow up examined Twitter. Last week, Facebook was in our sights, and now Google+ is the topic for today!
In response to the massive presence of Facebook around the world, Google put its money on Google+ as its answer to Facebook’s enormous market share, and many of us have been slowly (or more quickly, in some cases) embracing Google+ as another viable medium for communication, sharing, learning and marketing.
For personal use, Google+ can be a wonderful way to share with friends and family. This platform allows you to create “circles” with whom you can elect to share specific posts or information. Unlike Facebook, which makes not sharing particular posts with specific individuals rather cumbersome and not at all user-friendly, Google+ is very easy to navigate in this regard.
Google+ also allows the sharing of photos, the creation of “communities” (similar to Facebook’s groups), as well “Google Hangouts”, video-based conference calls that anyone can join once invited.
For nurses, the use of “hashtags” (search terms preceded by the “#” sign) are extremely useful and robust. Typing in “#nurse” or #nursing” in the Google+ search bar can yield hundreds–if not thousands–of hits, and one can find groups, corporations, bloggers, laypeople or communities that are posting about, talking about or otherwise engaging in conversation about that particular subject.
Personally, I find Google+ extremely useful in terms of searching for the hot topics in nursing, and I greatly enjoy my interactions with other nurses on this robust platform.
Many nurse bloggers and entrepreneurs have a presence on Google+, and nursing schools, hospitals and nursing organizations are also jumping on board. Google+ can also be a great place to visit when looking for work, since various organizations are posting positions on this growing platform as a way to reach out to potential candidates.
From Medscape and the ANA to Lippincott and many statewide nursing organizations, nurses’ individual and collective presence on Google+ has exponentially increased the reach of the nursing profession into the social media landscape.
I encourage readers of this blog to explore Google+ as a social media option, and to consider Google+ as an alternative, especially when you’re experiencing what many people call “Facebook Fatigue“.