Friday, July 20, 2012

Google +- Flash Gordon or Flash in the Pan?

What is Google+? It’s designed to be a social networking tool. But according to the companies’ upper floors, it's just supposed to be support for other Google applications. To be help rather than be the Mothra to Facebook’s Godzilla. But with customer satisfaction for Facebook waning, while Google +’s rises, you do wonder if they giant butterfly will have more sequels.

People who use Google + say that it’s almost antiseptic. Clean lines, colors ranging from blue to white back to blue again, with hints of hunter green. Along with the slow fade outs that we’ve come to know from all Google products. Google + seems to be for the professional, getting your name out there while also keeping up to date on what is happening in your industry. While Facebook is for vacation pictures, Google+ can help point you in a direction of whether it’s a good idea to redesign your companies web page to include an RSS Feed. At least at this time, it feels like your personal life really has no place on Google +.

To many a professional this would save a lot of headaches. LinkedIn is more to show you off to prospective employers, and the corporate website is really to show off company to prospective clients. So using Google + to show your boss and co-workers that interesting new article you saw about marketing, while not having to worry about them finding those awkward family photos you put up so you grandmother could see them. Pulling together a hangout so everyone can hear that speaker you saw last month and discuss it can put you leagues ahead of the competition.

Many will decry the fact that they have to use more than one platform for different facets of their lives. Yeah, suck it up. As your co-worker I have no interest in knowing how much you love Tru Blood. As your friend I don’t need to see your blog article about agricultural trends in the Midwest affecting your market share, ever.  But this raises another question, if this is a place for my professional life, and not my personal life will it truly ever catch on? If you ask around people say they  care a great deal more about their personal life than their professional. So how will Google + ever dominate or even stay afloat against the Facebook juggernaut?

Google +’s idea is to swim with instead of against Facebook. Facebook has made some blunders on their own (I’m looking at you, timeline), and this is making more people look at the competition. Google + looks more like the future as well, just due to the fact that Facebook hasn’t updated their pages since, wait, never? Innovation doesn’t need to be constant but it probably should be every couple years or so.

Having Facebook on every thing that has an internet connection is great, but that’s not so innovative anymore. So this is where Google + may have the upper hand, they have nowhere to go but up. Facebook has to try and reinvent the wheel, but without the wheel being too different or users will come after them like the villagers in Young Frankenstein. So there is a market for Google + but them maintaining and/or overtaking Facebook looks unlikely. But if Facebook doesn’t try to update to keep up with Google + the villagers will start heading to the lumber yard.