The Google+ euphoria finally seems to be settling down. There’s no doubt that Google’s second innings in social media started with a bang – Google+ came, saw and conquered the hearts of people all over the world. Google+ had the wow factor and it hit other social media networks where it hurts the most.
However, despite the initial enthusiasm over Google+, I never believed that it would emerge as an alternate to Facebook, Twitter or any other social network for that matter. I know of several people who were quick to jump ship from Facebook and Twitter claiming Google+ would eventually rule them all.
Though Google finally tasted social media success with Google+ and it’s a great ambassador to the cause of social media, I can’t help question if it has the legs to compete in the mainstream social media segment and for how long.
Facebook took about 35 months to get 25 million visitors. It took Twitter more than 30 months and it took Myspace more than 20 months to reach the 25 million-user mark. In contrast, Google+ has crossed this landmark in less than 30 days. Call it the launch hype or the might of Google’s marketing machine, G+ started off on an impressive note.
However, unlike Facebook which boasts of a 750+ million ‘active’ user, Google+ has fallen short of being able to keep users hooked. It started off with ‘let’s see what Google+ is about’ and once the curiosity was over, a lot of people haven’t looked back at Google+. On the other hand, there are hardcore G+ followers who believe it’s a cult social media network and it’s here to stay forever.
None the less, I still have my doubts on whether G+ can sustain its astronomical growth figures.
For the last several months, we’ve been hearing that Google+ business profiles are coming ‘soon’ and now the delays are beginning to hurt Google big time. Google could have made serious inroads into the business segment with a timely release of G+ business profiles. However, it instead chose to impart G+ a fun flavor with interactive gaming.
In my opinion, G+ needs an active business user community in order to compete with Facebook in this keenly contested lucrative segment.
The Facebook Effect
You don’t mess with the big boys or else you end up paying for it. Google+ publicized Facebook’s weaknesses and leveraged the same for promoting itself. As expected, Facebook hit back in style, coming up with one killer feature after the other including smart lists, simplified privacy, innovative features like timeline, improved advertisements etc.
I’ve come across a number of Facebook addicts who jumped ship to G+ and have made Facebook home again in wake of the recent changes brought about by the world’s leading social network. To make things even more interesting, Facebook recently launched the ultra cool iPad app, an area where G+ lacks badly.
Coming back to my original question – is Google+ dead, dying or still alive? I’d say it’s premature to claim that Google+ is dead. However, there’s no doubt that G+ has lost some of its aura and it would be interesting to see if it’s got the legs to compete in mainstream social media. What do you think of the future of Google+? Please share your opinion by leaving a comment.