Google Plus

Google Plus let me in!My palms were sweaty with anticipation. Standing on the outside looking in I felt like the last kid picked to play right field in the sandlot game. All those feelings of high school loserdom came roaring back in one hot blast until…

…it arrived. My invitation to join Google Plus. No longer would my face be pressed against the glass. I could now read the endless blog posts and expert ruminations on how Google Plus was the next best thing, will improve your brand and put Facebook out of business without a trace of envy.

I could experience it for myself. I was among the chosen. I was no longer a contender – I was somebody!

Credit Google for doing a bang-up job of building anticipation for Plus. The blog world was simply agog about this new platform. There is nothing like a healthy dose of curiosity to stoke the marketing machine. Remember Fahrvegnugen?

If you are sitting on the edge of your seat waiting for your chance to join the inner circle of Google Plus (oh, that’s a joke only us Google Plus users will get)- relax. This baby isn’t going anywhere for a while and  there is absolutely no reason to jump into the fray immediately. In other words – the hype far out paces the reality.

Think of Google Plus as Facebook Lite. A lot of similar functions – but with different names. The learning curve is not steep but…it is a learning curve. If you are reflexive with Facebook it will take you a little time to figure out Google Plus. Nothing dramatic, mind you, but time you could be using elsewhere. Like on Twitter. Or Linked In. Or writing a blog post.

I m not here to bash Google Plus. There are a lot of interesting features. The design is simple. Adaptation will be easier because we already “understand” how social platforms work.

However, despite the fact that Google Plus will have about 20 million users in the first two weeks – it is still a beta product. What you see today will not be what is released to the general public (whenever that is). There is some integration with other Google products but that is far from complete. (I do recommend using Chrome if you are a Plus member as the integration is pretty seamless). There is no functionality for business pages akin to Facebook – but Google says that is coming.

The folks at CNET came up with a pretty good list of “issues with Google Plus and you can read that here.

In the end, Google Plus becomes yet another on-line time suck. It will take you time to get acclimated to the new surroundings. It will take time to build a community equal to what you have on Facebook. It will take time for Google Plus to reach the relevance of Facebook. Most importantly, it will take time to see if Google Plus is worth your time.

Google Plus will also force us to come up with new terminology. We “friend” people and “like” brands on Facebook. We “follow” people on Twitter. We “join” on Linked In. “Connect” is overused and too generic.

What will the Google Plus word be? We’re thinking “add” – as in “Add Me on Google+”

Your thoughts?

Steve Allan, Social Media Specialist

SMThree

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About Steve Allan

I am a Social Media specialist uniquely focused on the management, messaging and marketing of social media platforms for non-profits and small businesses.
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3 Responses to Google Plus

  1. Elias Shams says:

    I finally had a chance to check out the Google+, and to find out how it’s different from other social media channels. After spending two days of goofing off and circling with other people on the site, the differences are all about our PEE PEE 🙂

    Twitter: I need to pee pee!
    Facebook: I pee peed!
    Foursquare: I’m pee peeing here!
    Quora: Why am I pee peeing?
    Youtube: Watch this pee pee!
    LinkedIn: I pee pee well
    New myspace: let’s dance while pee peeing!
    Google+: Let’s all pee pee in a circle
    http://awesomize.me : HOW AWESOME DO I PEE PEE on Twitter, FB, Foursquare, Quora, youtube, LinkedIn, myspace and Google+

  2. A very good article about G+, but I am still very new to social media (have never used FB) and for me it is not easy to know where to begin in setting up a profile and how all this will work as many of Google services are or will be connected together within G+ frame.

    One point, as I can see it, is that G+ (and Google in general) expect most people to have a rather open profile (through these circle) with some info or something else that would start a conversation (or stream) with strangers on their hang out or sharing features built into Google. There are very few provide such content in their profile which at this stage of beta level will let their profile be informative enough or even open in that way, so I guess it will not work until there is another way to make contact or people realize that they need to have a more open circle to let people in.

    Another point are that GDocs seem to be far from integrated into Hang out which would be a natural part if you want to collaborate writing a paper or making a project of some kind. Sparks seem to be just a short version of Google search engine, but with limited control for what kind of info you will get and I feel a bot overloaded by Buzz, Stream etc. What is the purpose with two services that in many way are very much the same and intervene with each other?

    In this way I think wordpress or blogging sites work better as a base of communication with unknown persons then these profiles do at G+ and you will not get overloaded by information which I think can be problem if it continue to just throw social media products out in the blue without any real thoughts on how use them.

    //thoughtline

  3. Deloras says:

    Wow, fantastic blog structure! How long have you been blogging for?
    you made blogging look easy. The full look of your
    web site is fantastic, as neatly as the content!

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