Google Plus More Then Social Media
Google Plus is an enigma. Those who use it will boast about its benefits, those who run it will boast about its massive user base, those who depend on it will compare it to Facebook. But can anyone honestly back up this data with anecdotal evidence? You can drown in data that Google Plus has over half a billion people per month “using its services” – but are those services Google Plus, or are they the more popular applications Google operates that are under Google’s umbrella, like their app store or Gmail or Youtube?
Facbook Vs Google Plus
This isn’t a hate on Google Plus. Some of their communities are very nice, the user interface is good, the hangouts are excellent. In fact, in many ways it’s a better version of Facebook. But that’s kind of the problem, it’s a slightly better version of Facebook, but it’s no more than that. It’s not enough to get people moving across to their service. There’s no unique selling point that tells your average person why they should join Google Plus.
Is that the reason Google Plus have been incorporating their accounts across all other services? A lot of users of Youtube were left frustrated, angry and disappointed by Google “enforcing” their social network upon Youtube users. To comment on videos now, users of Youtube must have their account attached to a Google Plus account. Maybe it’s the vocal minority (200,000 signatures on a petition online still only represents 0.2% of Youtube’s monthly user base), but the changes for many haven’t gone down well.
Google Plus & YouTube
From a business perspective, the interesting question is how can Google plus help me? Well, ironically enough, it’s actually the search engine benefits of the social network that really make it stand out. Google are synergising their offerings – maps, search, videos, everything is converging closer and closer together. And if your business is on Google Plus (which is basically what Google local is becoming) it might help your search ranking. This is where more things tie in together, if Google can get people using Google Plus (and we mean actually USING Google Plus) and collect even a percentage of the wealth of data that Facebook has about its users, then it can deliver much more personalised search results – based on interest and friends.
The interesting battle, in amongst all this, actually lies within the search engine realm. We’ve seen with Facebook’s graph search, they’re trying to develop a search engine that can harness the power of their users, and the information of their users. Facebook is going one way, Google is going the other – and they’re both headed towards the same space. For your business, Google Plus might seem unnecessary, but it actually could be crucial.