In just shy of a month, Google Plus had created a community 25 Million strong. In all of the hysteria of selective invites and profile creation, Google had created one of the fastest growing website in the illustrious albeit short history of the internet. There were those who saw the meteoric rise as a sign that the writing was on the wall for Facebook and its flimsy definition of privacy.
However, that hasn’t exactly been the reality. The reason for the initial buzz falling flat should be all too familiar to Google. Last time, however, they were the beneficiary of the phenomenon. The easy recent comparison would be Microsoft launching Bing with ad budget in the millions. Google was able to stand pat and watch the well-funded upstart try to chip away at the empire that it had amassed. Not that the reminder is needed but Google remains king of the search.
With all that being said, there is great functionality to Google Plus, features that have yet to be widely discovered by the general public and could give Plus staying power.
- Focused Sharing: Plus allows the sharing of content to select circles, you could say social media via scalpel. You can share works articles with your colleagues or post your weekend plans with friends, you have the tools to choose the intimacy of your networking. This comes in handy when you don’t want coworkers or parents to see your updates. Intimacy is vital to Plus and could very well be the differentiator between Facebook and Plus in the long run.
- Authentic Social Experience: Facebook has become a true place of business, with pages and likes becoming a focus of most modern marketing strategies. If businesses begin to lessen the social experience, there is a chance that more and more users could seek out a new network the way that they left MySpace en masse.
- Google Integration: One advantage that Google has over Facebook is that there are numerous reasons that the internet population is already using some Google functionality. Gmail, for example, has built a base over the course of seven years. Switching between Gmail, Google Docs and Google searches will create a more seamless internet experience.
If Plus can foster the feeling of genuine connection that is being seemingly drained from Facebook, it stands a great chance of rivaling the current king of social networking and not becoming victim to the crash after a sugar rush.
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