I checked out the new look on Google+ and, for some reason, my first reaction was how ‘Facebook’ it looked. The two are nothing alike, yet that was my initial reaction. Perhaps I’d spent too long on Facebook. When it comes to Google+, I do wonder how social it really is. Sure, you can create your circles, and you can share content, but it doesn’t have the same social feel as Facebook, or Twitter for that matter.
Social media seems to be polarizing. There are rumors that Google’s search algorithms favor Google+ over Facebook likes, and whilst Google will most likely deny it, I can see how they would want to push their own social media site forward. They claim that 170 million people have upgraded to Google+, big numbers, but still not a patch on many of the other social media sites. How will these social media sites pan out over the next 12-18 months – I think they will further polarize. Here’s my rundown:
- Linkedin – currently the premier B2B site, and that’s where it will maintain it’s strength. It’s also a great place to search for talented people to poach if you want to increase the skill level in your business.
- Facebook – the social media channel of choice for those that want to engage with a broad audience
- Google+ – the SEO channel of choice to boost search rankings quickly
- Twitter – the ‘I’ve a got a deal for you today’ broadcast channel
- Youtube – video storage and sharing and the increased monetization of video
- Myspace – the art channel, particularly music aimed at youth
- Pinterest – marketing channel for the three F’s – food, fashion and family
- Blogs – and yes, blogs are social media, and they provide the real one-to-one interaction that customers look for
There’s no doubt that, over time, Google+ will become a strong social media site. It is at present dominated by people representing online businesses, particularly marketing people. If Google+ is to make any headway into the true social media stream, it will need to attract the mom and dad audience that Facebook has achieved in recent years. Until then, it may well stay a marketing and SEO social media channel – and that’s not terribly social.