For the first time ever, I have become an early adopter. I have a Google+ account! I managed to get an invite while access is very restricted. You may be wondering what Google+ or Googleplus is. Well Google have just launched Google+ as their version of a Social Media platform in the last few days. The best description I have heard about it is: It is not Facebook, but it is like Facebook.
So what do I think?
Well, I think, the best way to describe it is, it is like being invited to a show house that is very modern in design and everyone is ooohing and aaahing about the architecture of it and commenting about the sky lights and the design and I am wondering whether it could ever feel like home and would my furniture fit in here?
Aspects I like
I like the name, it fits perfectly with how we think of groups of people we know. It is very intuitive and fun way to put people literally into circles. It is a built in feature so you group people from the start rather than later, when your drowning in updates.
You can put people your Facebook Friends into groups, but it is not obvious and most people I work with are unaware that you can do it. Twitter allows you to manage your news stream by putting people into lists, but again it is not an obvious! But, what happens when you have more circles than can fit on a page or friends in a circle that become too small to see?
I haven’t yet been able to work out the etiquette: if someone you don’t know puts you in their circle, is that okay? Google+ seems to be a blend of Facebook and Twitter. Facebook operates on a reciprocal relationship: You both have to agree to be friends. Twitter operates on a non reciprocal basis: Anyone can follow you and you can follow anyone, it doesn’t have to be mutual. I think that Google+ is more like Twitter in this way, but is marketing the circles concept as about friendship.
It is a wonderful concept, it makes it very easy to have virtual get togethers and groups can watch videos together and comment about it. Immediately exciting to me because as a coaching or training tool this could be really brilliant! I want to have an explore, but…where are my friends to have a play around with it. They are on Facebook or Twitter. They can’t get into Googleplus at the moment and are they going to come aboard, anyway?
And wait… I heard on the grapevine….Facebook are announcing their launch of a video meeting room in the next few days. If Facebook can offer a similiar thing and all my friends are there anyway, which one do you think I would choose? Even if the technology isn’t as good.
I like the idea behind that you can find articles that interest you all in one place, think as the platform grows this will become a big feature. In some ways it is a lot like LinkedIn Today!
At the moment the new house does not have any locked doors. You can look up absolutely anyone and see their profile and their posts. If you are on Google+ try it out. Type some random name, select someone you know absolutely nothing about and see how much information you can find out about them! Even if you block someone, they can see your profile and your posts, by searching for your name.
At the moment you can share posts to particular circles, but there is nothing to stop one of your circle to share the information with everyone on Googleplus. I know it is something that they are working on, but at the moment, don’t post anything that you don’t mind the world seeing.
Do I feel the need for a Social Media Platform? No, but then again, I am the type of person who grumbles when they change the shelf layout at my local supermarket.
Do I feel that Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn are not performing for me? No, I am having fun and getting great results for my business.
Do I have the time as a business owner to spread myself across, yet another platform? No, but if it becomes popular, I will make the time.
Will I be part of the Google+ community? I don’t know. At the moment I am there out of curiousity. As a Social Media Coach and Trainer, I will be keeping a close eye on it. But, unless it starts getting populated in a big way with people I really care about, I don’t think so, not yet. Most of my friends and the businesses owners I work with trail behind in adopting technology. Joining Facebook and Twitter is still a big thing for them.
Ultimately, I am a sociable person. I prefer to hangout with my friends.
Have you tried it yet? If you are on it, I will add you to one of my circles. If you want an invite, let me know your gmail or googlemail address and I’ll invite you!