“Oh no! Please, not another social network,” you may think, but if you already approach it like this you won’t have use for it anyway. If you feel different about it, however, and are open minded enough to simply say, “Hell, why not? Let’s give it a try and if it sucks, I am outta there,” then you might want to read on.
Why am I saying that Google+ will have huge advantages for composers and musicians in general? (Please keep in mind that I am not trying to compare it to other social networks. We all know what’s possible with them … and what’s not!)
At first sight it might look a bit irritating, but once understood, the concept of Circles make big sense. Basically, Circles are nothing more than lists you are able to create for specific people. You can create a Circle for all your clients, or one for all the musicians you might considering hiring for your next project. You may create a Circle for friends and one for family.
The possibilities are almost endless. Just a few examples:
- You have close friends, spread around the globe and you feel like sharing some private news but don’t feel like involving all of your clients? Simply set up a specific Circle by only involving your friends!
- You are looking for a guitar player to hire for your next project. Isn’t it a great option to only send a post out to your “hire musicians” Circle and leave the stream “uncluttered” for your clients or friends?
- One of your hobbies might be Lucid Dreaming and you want to share and spread your experience but also learn from other people. Put them all in a Circle.
This is really a great feature! A Hang Out is nothing less than a group video chat conference. Wouldn’t it be simply cool to hang out with your bandmates who are spread around the country and working out a new idea? Wouldn’t it be of great advantage to have a video conference between an audio director and a co-working composer discussing an upcoming project? Wouldn’t it be awesome to directly talk to your hired remote musician to discus that violin arrangement?
Woot? Yes, a huddle is basically a “text chat” between two or several members on your mobile phone. It works really well and gives you the option to arrange, e.g. a changing meeting, letting several people know that you might be late due to a traffic jam or whatever … you get the idea!
The Stream and your posts
There is really lot to the Stream and how you can post content on Google+. One of the strongest features is that you are not limited to 140 characters—you can almost write a full-length blog post. I couldn’t say it better than +Mike Elgan did:
Instead of saying, ‘I’m going to write a blog post now,’ or ‘I’m going to send an e-mail,’ or ‘I think I’ll tweet something,’ you simply say what you have to say, then decide who you’re going to say it to.
If you address it to “Public” it’s a blog post.
If you address it to “Your Circles” it’s a tweet.
If you address it to your “My Customers” Circle it’s a business newsletter.
If you address it to a single person, it can be a letter to your mother.
I’d say this is pretty revolutionary.
I simply have to agree with him!
I hope I was able to give you a bit of an insight of what is possible with Google+. In my opinion, social networking is vital, important, and necessary—especially as a self employed composer. Please consider that Google+ is still in beta and I am sure there are lots of awesome features to come.