Google provides all the tools you need to create, present, and share documents. Andy Wolber explains how you can share Google Docs with Google+ to increase engagement.
Google provides all the tools I need as a presenter to create, present, and share slides publicly. I create and present presentations using the Slides app in Google Drive. For online meetings, I share the slides in a Google+ Hangout. I share the presentation with Google Drive’s share feature to make the presentation “public on the web,” which allows anyone to view it (Figure A).
A publicly shared presentation.
Share slides in a Google+ post
Google+ offers the best way to share slides online. Visitors view presentations by clicking on the presentation within a Google+ post. Slides may also be viewed full-screen or even downloaded (in PDF or PPTX format). As with any Google+ post, people can respond to the slides by commenting on the post.
Follow these steps to share slides in a Google+ post:
- Make sure your Slides app share settings have been set to Public on the web (Figure B), then copy the link (URL) to your slides
- Go to Google+, and in a new post, click the Link icon
- Paste the link to your slides
- Add text to provide context or further explain the slides
- Click the Share button
Create presentations with Google Apps, then share slides in context with Google+.
Share the link to your Google+ post
I encourage you to create a short link to the Google+ post with your slides. This way, people see your post, your slides, and your Google+ profile all on the same page. This is better than other systems that display slides without any context or just show shared files in a list of documents.
Here's how to create a short link to your Google+ post:
- Click the drop-down arrow in the upper right corner of your post, and select Link to post (Figure C)
- Copy the displayed link
- Go to your favorite link shortener, such as http://goo.gl
- Paste the link into the link shortener, and copy the resulting link
Give people a short link to see your slides, comments, and Google+ profile on a single page.
Get more feedback on slides
In a way, Google+ provides a third option for document collaboration and comments. You’re probably familiar with the first two: allowing people to edit a document, or allowing people to insert comments in a document. Posting your slides as described above also allows people using Google+ to comment on your post, which is the third way to obtain comments from a broader community (of course, you can always choose to disable comments).
Share slides with private groups
You can also share a presentation privately with Google+. Instead of sharing slides with the Public, you can restrict viewing to a specific Google+ Community, or even specific Google+ users. Organizations using Google Apps can restrict viewing to other people within the organization. To do this, just identify the specific set of viewers in the To: field when you create your Google+ post.
Restricted posts and slides will only be seen by the people who are members of the group you specified. For example, I sometimes share a set of slides with a Google+ Community of students in a class I teach. If a student shares the link with a non-class member, that non-class member will simply receive a prompt to login. No one will be able see the post unless they’re a member of the group.
Not surprisingly, Google+ sharing works not only for Slides, but also for Google Docs and Sheets.
Replace your intranet
Google Apps combined with Google+ can serve as an intranet that people actually use. Setup a few Google+ Communities for various groups within the organization (and follow a few tips to get started). Use the document sharing features described above to take information sharing and collaboration to a new level.
Sharing a document is helpful, but sharing a document with context -- and the ability to comment -- encourages even more collaboration.
How do you use Google Apps to share and collaborate? Let us know in the discussion thread below.