While everyone’s talking about Google Plus being some type of game-changer well before it’s even had wide release, many are already asking if it’s going to be the Facebook killer. Even though it’s a premature question, it’s a good one. After all, when Facebook came out, Myspace was the preferred social media forum and, in the space of a few years, it took over. Now Myspace is practically a non-entity and was sold off for a fraction of what it was purchased for. This has led many to ask if Facebook has a shelf life and if businesses should start focusing their attention on Google Plus as the premier way to network.
It’s obviously too soon to tell, but Google has made great strides to dominate the online world. It already has become the top search engine in the world and has made forays into the mobile, software, and other various technology fields. Google Plus is just another part of the company’s strategy to become a global leader in the communications market. This all comes at a bad time, depending on your viewpoint, for Facebook as it’s come under a lot of scrutiny for its many privacy issues and negative blow back from statements made from founder Mark Zuckerberg. Google is capitalizing on Facebook’s hard times and is making changes to freshen the face of social media and improve on Facebook’s static approach.
It’s not all buzz, it seems, as Google is adding some pretty interesting features that are sorely lacking with Facebook. For starters, Google Plus is a fresh face that is offering ease of use and navigation. Facebook has used a mostly one-size-fits-all approach to its site while Plus is looking to create an experience that can be formatted to give the user more control. Perhaps the biggest issue that Facebook has is its privacy. With Plus, the user is given much better privacy settings where you don’t have to be worried about who you’re interacting with or who will see the information. It has also created many links where you can access your email and links. Basically, it’s a one stop shop for all things social and communication.
As far as the business world is concerned, social media is becoming just as important as Virtual Office or cloud services. Plus could become a powerful business tool that will make it that much simpler for private companies and users to interact. Through an improved implementation of what Google calls “circles,” you’ll be able to create and manage networks within networks that are easy to share with. No longer will users have to create separate accounts to interact with business partners, clients, and friends. The circles feature will maintain user privacy and eliminate the clutter. People, and business, will be able to work through circles and control every aspect of their online relationships. I shared my thoughts on Google+ as a cloud computing solution for business in my recent Social Media Incubator post, “The Next Big Social Media Site for Business.”
Whether businesses should start switching over to Google Plus for purely social reasons is another matter. Doing so would be a bit premature given that Facebook still supports hundreds of millions of users. The network is still too powerful to neglect, but that may change in the near future. Google Plus may become the new way that individuals and businesses interact with each other as social media is further integrated into our everyday lives.