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Is it possible to make a post which notifies the users who are in a circle I have shared it with?

I understand that this would be ridiculous if I was to share a post with a huge circle, but if I have a particular circle of friends who I wish to speak to, is there a way of notifying them without having to mention each user in the share every time?

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"Notify" in what way?

People can choose to be notified1 by your posts (either you specifically or a Circle that they've put you in). But you're not in control; they are.

Elsewise, you can check a box to "also send email to {circlename}" which will do what it says, but a lot of people have been complaining about this feature being abused. (I've gotten my fair share of G+ spam from people I don't really care to hear from. It earned them a "blocked by Al" badge.)

Otherwise, no, you can't foist a notification on someone who would rather not be notified about your posts.2

1 In other words, get Mr. Jingles to alert them to the post in the Notifications panel.

2 Unless you use the trick you've already discovered of including them by name instead of the Circle you have them in.

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If I share a post with someone in particular, they get a notification (notification as in Mr. Jingles displays the post). If I share to a group, they don't – Curt Jul 11 '13 at 14:37
Exactly. Unless they've chosen to receive notifications when you post. – Al E. Jul 11 '13 at 14:38
In the beginning it was possible to click on a circle and select "notify" in a pop-up baloon, but it was since removed (as it was probably abused). – lapo Mar 24 '15 at 12:18

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