Google Plus is going to be a hit! Forget the scramble for invites & initial euphoria – Just the fact that it keeps attracting people back to itself (thanks to that black bar) is a reason why Facebook’s & Twitter’s of the world have to start worrying!
I nearly spent better part of the entire day yesterday on it and I am still not done exploring it completely – After Google’s half baked and feeble attempts at Social Networking earlier, Google Plus is a refreshingly fresh & honest attempt at making people’s lives Social.
The biggest factor that Google Plus takes care of – Individual Privacy. It probably has simplest of privacy policies and user can control everything as to what is supposed to be public and what is not. Yes, initially users do have to spend time in creating circles (aka groups of people), but once you are done with that, it becomes far more easier.
Most of the serious users of Facebook & Twitter are already on Google Plus, or are waiting for Google to open up.
But what about brands? Will Google Plus be adopted by Businesses & Brands?
I would say, YES – but adoption may be slow!
Facebook, is a great place for businesses and so is Twitter – It really helps brands to interact and share with their fans & followers. Facebook’s Business & Community pages have made huge positive impact on Businesses world-wide. On the contrary, Google Plus currently looks like it has been purely targeted at individuals (and it might change as it matures).
FB & Twitter are hit with businesses because self-promotion is an integral part of these platforms. Most of them look at these platforms as Marketing Channels (which they are). Brands brag about “no. of followers” they have and how big they are in Social Media.
Google Plus on the other hand does not have this “Fans” or “Followers” concept. Google Plus users don’t have to follow a brand, business or a person. Users just have to add them to a circle and even if they do not add you to a circle you can still follow their public shares. Its not a compulsion!
So for a Google Plus user, he has a choice as to whether an update should go only to his “circles” or it can be made completely public – and I assume these will get into Google Index sooner rather than later.
Google Plus Adoption by Businesses / Brands
Google Plus adoption for Brands & Businesses might be slow initially, but over a period of time, it will surely catch on. It will be a place where Brands can put up their profiles, their “+ses” and it will be accessible to anyone and everyone without having to actually “follow” the brand.
What I also foresee is that these Business/ Brand public profiles will be integral part of SERPs (Search Engine Ranking Pages) and will be tightly integrated with search engine. This will attract lot more traffic to the brands & businesses than probably what Facebook or Twitter do today.
Having said that, a lot will also depend on how open Google Plus makes itself to developer ecosystem. They need to release the APIs at the earliest to ensure that apps are build around it. And looking at how well Google has put up the Apps Marketplace, I am personally confident we will soon see a large developer ecosystem around Google Plus.
So, Brands & Businesses need to move fast and start making their presence felt on Google Plus. Some are already on it – MTV India is the first Indian Brand on Google plus !
What do you think? Comments are Open!