I'm writing this post specifically for Active Rain members who are submitting content to Google Plus from their Active Rain Blog. I'm following a lot of you already, (and if we're not connected, circle me now!) and I see this happening on most of the posts coming from the AR site.
Google+ is very visual. It likes photos. When you submit a link to Google+, it will pull a picture from the link to add to the Google post. Most of the links coming from an Active Rain site end up with this little cutey:
Yep. That's it. Not very visual (unless your intended reader happens to be an AR junkie, perhaps). It does nothing to help promote the post that you've taken the time to promote on Google Plus. BUT FRET NOT MY FELLOW ACTIVERAINER'S! There is a simple solution!
When you initially submit a link to your Google+ account, you get a box that should appear something like this:
See those little arrows at the top of the picture? Use them to cycle through the various photos that can be used. If you've included any photos within your post, they'll be there. Photos on the page that the link points to should be there, too (that means YOUR AR profile pic).
Pick a clip from the post that best reflects the topic. Pick something that is enticing. If nothing else, pick your Mug Shot, Glamour Shot, AR profile pic. That way, it will at least interest people that are interested in what you write.
And while we're on the subject of Google+ posting, when you submit a link, think of it as an AR type reblog and write a brief lead-in the post box that tells people why you think they should click on the link you've provided. You'll get better results. And finally, make them PUBLIC! What's the use of promoting them if you're limiting the audience? Don't hide your work!
UPDATE: Already posted and need to change the pic? Here's how to do it