What’s the point of Google+?
I’ve had a couple of conversations with people who can’t see the point in Google+ recently (one of them on Google+, funnily enough). Even social media experts aren’t convinced yet (Gemma Went tweeted this morning that she wasn’t spending much time there).
I’ve started playing around with it more over the past few days and have been enjoying it. In looking for a USP I do feel it offers something that neither Facebook nor Twitter do – the capability to include everyone in your life on one social network.
A lot of the conversations I have in my job revolve around the boundaries of work and Facebook. Should staff add external contacts as friends on their personal Facebook accounts? Many don’t, and personally I agree with this, choosing to keep Facebook very much for personal friends who I am happy to share all with.
Twitter, on the other hand, I use more for work connections, and the people who follow me tend to be more from the digital marketing side of my life, which is fine. But I then risk being irrelevant to that audience if I tweet too regularly about the latest DJ mix I’ve downloaded or albums that I’m listening to. So I tend to keep the content I share more digital-related.
But what if I want to share a link with both groups of people? Or just one person that I’m only friends on Facebook with but I want to share that content with them in private?
This is where I see Google+ coming in, and the circles feature is perfect for this. Share with as many, or as few, people as you like, sending content about particular topics to particular circles, but being able to keep all of those contacts in one place. It’s actually more flexible in the way it lets you communicate than either Facebook or Twitter, which I think is its USP.
It’s obviously early days yet, brands aren’t on there and there’s no advertising yet – Google haven’t gone as far as they can with this product. I would expect to use it more frequently over the next six months, and look forward to seeing what is in store for brands.
But then what would I know? I quite liked Google Wave!