One more reason I question if Google+ will make it

There has been a lot of talk and speculation about Google+ – and if it is too late for the network to now start to flourish. A LOT of talk.

Google+ seemed to take off early on, when it was first introduced and people were excited to get on, c

heck it out, and see the features. And many of the features of G+ are cool, really quite a bit better than what Facebook offers (the list includes the ability to edit a post, better-looking pictures once posted, ‘circles’ to better organize your database and those who you want to follow, and so on). Early on, people signed up in droves as things were really exciting.

I was among the first to sign up, and I really liked it.

But the floodgates didn’t open soon enough. Many who wanted to sign up couldn’t (all in an effort to keep it special and build more excitement, I presume). So I was left waiting to engage with many people who didn’t add a G+ profile as they either couldn’t get in (or didn’t know how), or they decided they didn’t need to move over as they already had a Facebook profile.

I found myself waiting, and waiting and waiting for others to join the crowd at G+. But they never came on over. It was disheartening.

And on top of all that, business pages took forever to be introduced. That really, REALLY hurt Google+.

And so last week, business pages were finally introduced and early word on the street seems to be positive. So my thoughts were back to maybe Google+ has a chance to make it and can spark interest again….

Until I got this email from Google+ less than a week ago:

An email invite to join Google+

Yes, you read that right. Google+ is inviting me to join. To join! I guess they weren’t able to check their database to see if I was already “in.”

Some might say this isn’t that big a deal, but I think it is. To me, this just means the Google+ folks don’t have their act fully together. I always think it is the little things that count, and I would even dare to argue this is a big thing. Anything that makes a company or product look silly – well, I think everyone would agree you want to avoid that.

But maybe you have different thoughts about the past, present and future of Google+. I definitely want to hear about it.

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9 Responses to “One more reason I question if Google+ will make it”

  1. I hate to think that Google might have another social media flop on their hands, but you might be right, Laurel. I have to admit, I have not put time into Google+ since it’s inception. The big three are time consuming enough for me at this point. Plus, I wanted to see if it would go anywhere before I really invested in it. It doesn’t appear that it is, sadly. I say sadly, because I think it could really be a great asset to people who want to improve their online presence. I wish it would have garnered more interest, but frankly, I just get bored there. :(

  2. Google tries a lot of things, not all of them work (and some of them work really well for a lot of people, but not enough to justify keeping around – I’m looking at you, Google Notes). And, the database snafu I don’t see as that big of a deal (I personally have…probably 15 google email addresses?). What they need to do is get the timing right on what works, and capitalize on all the stuff Facebook and Twitter are doing that don’t work for so many (Twitter activity, for example). I still have high hopes for Google+ as a filtered, curated (by me) much more focused social platform.

  3. I agree with Marivic (also I’m looking at YOU, Wave), but I think also that the SEO factor of a Google product weighs in here as well. Right now, it seems like it would be most valuable to certain types of audiences, and that might be enough to keep it around for awhile while the later adopters check it out.

  4. These are great comments everyone, thank you. It is so true that what is important to one person isn’t to another….and these social media channels have the challenge of needing to be meaningful to many get the scale they need to make it work. I guess if later adopters will come on board, it will be by the end of the year….I’m for one highly skeptical that these late-goers will come on over. When a lot of people are voicing skeptacism, people start to doubt and hesitate and not act. (see this article from Slade on Nov. 8th: http://www.slate.com/articles/technology/technology/2011/11/google_had_a_chance_to_compete_with_facebook_not_anymore_.html)
    As an aside, I really REALLY want G+ to work since I like so many of the features. My fingers are still crossed.

  5. I agree laurel. I waited for google+ to flourish and found myself updating both fb and g+ which fetl annoying and lame, so I also waited. Then I forgot about it. People are still using fb even w it’s flaws.

    I agree that it was bad for g+ not to have you in their database already.

  6. My thinking is the biggest mistake they made was launching without an API. I still don’t understand that strategy. Almost 5 months without an API? Crazy.

    So they now have one, and developers are starting to release apps. Like this one from a guy I used to work with.
    http://plusbounce.com/

    We’ll see, but I’m not holding my breath on Goog+. Google is overly focused on products, imo, instead of platforms, but that’s a different post.

  7. That is an interesting point, Philip, thank you for your insight. And thanks for weighing in, Miri!

    One thing I failed to mention before is that the email address where I got the invite to sign up with G+ is the same email I used to sign up many months before…..that is where I think the details really matter. I see this time and time again with everything marketing. The devil is in the details as is impacts branding, confidence and ultimately decision-making.

  8. First, I can’t figure out why everyone expects in 2-3 months that Google+ should be over taking FB. We have become so jaded in our expectations of membership growth. It takes time to review a new site, decide what it brings to the table and invest our precious personal time decide how we want to engage.

    Secondly, few of us are of Chris Brogan’s status. That is, they can post a picture on FB that says “I have moved” and have your audience go with you. Now, I don’t expect that people left FB for Chris Brogan, but they do follow him over there instead. Patience is a virtue while we deal with our day jobs and wait for friends to test the waters.

    Third. As far as getting an email after you have already signed up… well no system is perfect. It may be an irritant, but if you really liked the stuff you tried when you signed up, why would you let a simple email bother so much. Now if you got 10 emails, then I would be irritated.

    Fourth. I believe that we need multiple presence points on social media. 100% of your business contacts, friends, or family are not all in the same place on social media. We go where our passions or business drives us. For social business to work we need to have a place where our contacts can connect with us where they want to and feel comfortable. From a pure business perspective, you need multiple social spaces, and one location where they can find it all to make it easy. I use Xeeme.com in that way.

    Just my jaded opinions today.

    Wendy
    My social presence at xeeme.com/wendysoucie which does include Google+

  9. Wendy, thanks for weighing in and you raise some great points. Agreed, people are fully impatient….and multiple social media channels are needed. You get me wondering if G+ will be more of a “professional discussion” channel – and not one where my mom and aunt and artsy best friend will come over to. My professional friends are on, my non-business friends and contacts are not. We’ll have to see.

    I wouldn’t expect G+ to have taken over FB, but I think G+ would have hoped for more excitement to be building and building over time, and for the numbers and buzz to still be healthy and generating postive press (which I haven’t seen recently….).

    And yes, little things shouldn’t be an irritant – but based on how I observe people reacting to the little things – I see tolerance (and patience levels!) are definitely down.

    Again, it will all be interesting to see where this goes. Very interesting.

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