Two-Minute Drill: How to Share a List of Google Contacts

One of the problems that we’re solving with the FullContact Address Book is that it’s needlessly difficult to share a list of contacts when you primarily use Gmail and Google Contacts. While it’s a bit of a pain, it can be done a couple of different ways, so let’s jump in and take a look:


What a pain! Fortunately we’re fixing this with the FullContact Address Book. Inside of the Address Book you’ll be able to make lists to your heart’s content, then share them with whomever you want. Have you signed up for the beta yet?


Transcript: How to Share a List of Google Contacts

Hey, it’s Brad from Full Contact. One of the problems that I run into pretty often is that I need a list of my contacts that I can share with other people, and that way we can all collaborate on projects together. Maybe I’ve got a group of people that I’m working with as far as getting some blog content up, and all I really need to do is share that contact list.

Well, unfortunately, Google Contacts doesn’t make that very easy. As a matter of fact it doesn’t work hardly at all.

As you can see here I made a list of my most contacted people. Now if I go up here and I click on the More button and I want to manage delegations settings of these people, you would think that that would apply only to the list that I want. And unfortunately, that’s not the case. As you can see, it wants to delegate all 840 of my Google contacts and that’s not what I want at all.

So let’s get out of that and then let’s take a look at something else here. Maybe we want to export these contacts, so let’s take a look at that. And we can do either selected contacts – the group that I’ve got working right here, which is my most contacted – or all of my contacts.

So if we want to go for my most contacted, we can export that as Google.csv, Outlook.csv, or a vCard format, and then somebody else can import that into whatever contacts management solution that they’re using. Now the obvious problem here is if my contacts update their email address or their phone number or what have you, then that list that I’ve exported is now out of date and it doesn’t really solve any problems because it doesn’t keep that list updated with the people that I’ve exported it to.

One option that you have is a third party app called Gmail Shared Contacts. Ignore the fact that the site’s not exactly the prettiest thing in the world – it does seem to work. Unfortunately, it’s going to cost some money to get all of the features and pricing that you want. Like for instance, the big one here is Share with a Group of Users. Well, if I can only share with one person at a time, that doesn’t do me much good. So I’m going to pay nine euros per month in order to get that. If have I have team, let’s say I’ve got 50 or 60 people on my team, that’s going to be 250 euros a year for my team to be able to share those lists of contacts with other people. They also put a limit on the storage capacity, of course. Unlimited groups and unlimited contacts are going to cost you money as well. So that’s perhaps is not the greatest answer for all of you out there, but it does work.

Now let me give you a little peek into the future. So if I go in here in my FullContact address book you can see that I’ve got a few lists already. And if we got to full contact employees and then I want to go in here and share this with people, all I have to do is change my share permissions right there. And I can add anybody who is also a full contact user. If they’re not a full contact user, it’s going to send them an invitation so that they can be a user as well. You can go in and add different people and give them sharing permissions inside of a list, and once you’re in there you can easily select who can view, who can edit, or you can simply delete them and remove their permissions entirely.

So that’s what’s coming for you very soon. But for now, this is all we have and this is what we have to work with. So it’s a bit of an imperfect process and it doesn’t do exactly what we want it to do, but it is possible. That’s your two minute drill, talking about sharing lists of contacts from Google. Thanks for watching. I’m Brad from FullContact.com.