Outstripping both Facebook’s and Twitter’s launches, Google+ has reached 20 million new users in just about three weeks. The new Google platform is proving that social networkers are not too inundated with daily posting responsibilities to take on yet another social media platform. Clearly, they seem all too happy to.
From a birds-eye view, Google+ is really not that different from Facebook. It has a cleaner look and easier functionality. The big news is its feature called “circles,” which enables users to group their “friends” into categories. FB has a similar feature, but it’s clumsy and inaccessible to post-view settings. Google+ will let you share posts with specific “circles,” so you can easily hide AND share those, um, outspoken posts. With Facebook, you are limited to public or private posting, with not much in between.
So, big deal, right? Well, maybe. But what brands and marketing professionals need to keep in mind is that this is a Google product. Yeah, Google did fail us with its “Wave” and “Buzz” platforms, but it seems this time Google has incorporated the lessons learned (and not learned) by itself and its competitors. So it’s now an attractive Google product.
For businesses, that means the targeting and test-marketing potential for brands is enormous. If Google+ gets this right, and successfully incorporates all the geo-targeting, analytics, and search capabilities Google is best known for – well, brands just might decide that Google+ is a better choice than Facebook.
But – it is more likely that brands will have to *sigh* and just add Google+ to the ever-growing social media toolbox. For now, Google+ is just for non-biz users but has plans to release “business features” before long. We’ll keep you posted.