New Social Media, Google Plus – Have You Been Invited to Google Plus Yet?

New Social Media, Google Plus – Have You Been Invited to Google Plus Yet?

What does everyone think about Google Plus? Right now it’s available by invitation only so someone has to invite you to join it.

Google Plus links all of your Google accounts (GMAIL, Google Docs, Blogger etc…) together and associates them to a social profile. In creating this “Social Networking Platform”, the idea was to do something different and become more competitive with social sites like Facebook. It is an interesting concept but is it really that different from what already exists within Social Media sites that are online right now.

The idea is that instead of posting info that everyone in your contact list is able to see, you can create “Circles”. A Circle is like a mini group, when posting content you can make it so that only selected Circles can see the content.

The Circles component of Google Plus is intended to stop you from sharing information with people in your contact list who you may not want to share with. You may have friends, family, colleagues and acquaintances in your Social Media contact list. You may not want a co-worker seeing your family photos from the weekend barbeque for example. Google Plus attempts to solve this perceived problem by making it easier to organize “who” can see “what” information.

The question is, does it really make it easier? Is the problem that social sites which currently exist don’t provide the ability to control privacy/sharing settings to control “who” can see “what”, or is the issue more to do with not caring, having enough time or “know how” to keep our privacy settings up to date?

For those who are hooked on other Social Media like Twitter or Facebook, does this feature really entice you to jump ship?

Facebook offers custom privacy settings that enable you to control contacts in your list that can see the information you share. It takes moments to change this setting and you can customize each component of your profile to disable co-workers and others from seeing your personal photos, wall and other information.

Twitter offers the ability to sort your Tweets into lists. While lists don’t address the issue of who you share your information with, it does enable you to group, list and/or sort your Tweets by categories that you create.

With Google Plus, the Circle aspect still carries an administrative burden, in that you have to think about what Circles you want to create, who you want to add and keep it up to date. If someone wouldn’t bother to take a few moments to update their Facebook privacy settings, why would they take the time to create and administer Circles?

If you don’t keep your Circles current, as relationships evolve and you add more contacts, your Circles could become an administrative disaster. Imagine having hundreds of friends, all dispersed into these Circles. We guess the more Circles you create, the more complicated it could get =)

We’re also not sure how different a Circle is from a group. If you create a group on Facebook, only group members can see the information shared there.

So from an innovation prospective, we are not convinced that Google pulled it off. At the end of the day the proof will be in the pudding and the pudding will be the number of users who not only sign up but commit to spend time there. We have heard reports that Google Plus has already exceeded over 20,000,000 users and it is still beta, the question is, will it become another My Space (something many of us have but don’t really use or visit often).

Has anyone tried Google Plus yet? If you haven’t and you want to, send me your email address and I will invite you. Courtney@assureassess.com or call (888) 766-1221 ext 8, www.marketingforce.ca

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