With all of the mixed reviews about Google Plus we decided to run a Linkedin Poll to ask how many people are actually using the Social Platform. The survey spawned a lot of discussion on the topic and interesting results.
The survey yielded 302 responses and feedback was split right up the middle. More than 60% of the respondents were managers, executives and business owners. In the end, 52% of respondents said that they are using Google Plus and 48% said they are not. Of the respondents who said that they are not, many commented that on a personal note they didn‚Äö√Ñ√¥t see how Google Plus was much different than Facebook and wasn‚Äö√Ñ√¥t alluring enough to convince them to make a move.
Some other comments that we noted were that many professional respondents had commented that in fact they prefer Linkedin over Facebook and Google Plus. This is interesting because professionally I too prefer Linkedin for BTB networking over all platforms but tend to gravitate towards FB for networking with friends and family.
Of the respondents who said that they are using Google Plus, many mentioned that they were using it for their business and had integrated it into their Social Media Marketing efforts. It seems that more businesses have jumped on the Google Plus bandwagon at this early stage in the game. With the integration of ‚Äö√Ñ√∫search‚Äö√Ñ√π with Google Plus many have speculated that it will be the feature that drives many people off of Facebook and onto Google Plus. We tend to think that the integration of the search feature will make Google Plus more appealing to brands who want to be found on search, but I don‚Äö√Ñ√¥t know how appealing this feature really is to consumers.
The problem is that without people jumping on board, sharing and checking into Google Plus regularly; that only leaves brands to market to other brands. Some of those who indicated that they had registered to Google Plus personally indicated that while they had registered, they weren‚Äö√Ñ√¥t really checking into it regularly or posting because they didn‚Äö√Ñ√¥t have as many contacts that are active on Google Plus as they do on other Social Media platforms.
The question is will Facebook TimeLine change all that? The blogosphere is lit up with Facebook customers complaining about the new Timeline view and we wonder if Timeline view will be the final straw for individual Facebook users that pushes them over to the clean and user friendly Google Plus interface. I try not to cast personal opinions in my articles but I personally do not want my Facebook account switched to Timeline and think that it could be a dangerous mistake for Facebook to force mandatory Timeline view on its users. It is a drastic change and people can be resistant to change. I am going to run a Linkedin Poll about Timeline view this week and will report the findings next month.
One thing is clear; it seems that where individual Social Media usage is concerned many people only have room in their hearts to be consistently active on one platform at a time hence all of the feedback from people comparing Google Plus to their current Social Platform of choice. On a personal note, I still lean more towards using Facebook than Google Plus. On a professional note a brand cannot help but have a presence on all of the main SMM platforms. I think that 52% of respondents indicating that they are using Google Plus at all is a pretty good number considering that it has only been available to individuals for less than a year and to brands for less than 3 months. It will be interesting to see how this platform continues to evolve in 2012.