Google created a bit of a media frenzy when they first launched Google+. They limited the number of invitations that they sent out. They also limited the amount of bandwidth that they made available. Getting an invitation wasn’t a guarantee that you’d be able to actually get in immediately. (I had images of trying to enter an exclusive nightclub and not being able to get past the bouncer.) Was this part of their plan to generate buzz and anticipation? Some of my favorite bloggers were tweeting and posting on Facebook that they were in and were offering invitations. It certainly appears to me that it was an effective marketing campaign.
The Buzz over Google+
I was very interested in receiving an invitation. Sure, there may have been a little of that I want to be the first kid on the block amongst my blogging friends to get in. Why not? Being able to tweet or post on Facebook and offer to pass out Google+ invitations did present an opportunity to get on people’s radar screens. After all, we do need to build awareness and good will don’t we?
Not all bloggers were anxiously waiting to join this new network. Many still haven’t joined and some people have no plans at all of participating. I’ve been reading lots of posts and comments that say we don’t need another social network and we’re spending enough (maybe too much) time already trying to manage all of the sites we’re on. I don’t argue with these sentiments at all. After all, if it’s not impacting our business in a positive way, should we be doing it?
A Business Strategy for Joining Google+
I firmly believe it all comes down to personal decisions and business strategy. What would be the benefit(s) to you to join Google+? As for me, part of my business strategy is to build awareness of my consulting skills. It’s important to me to be knowledgeable about social networking. (After all, it’s one of the classes that I teach.) Another benefit to me is that by establishing my presence early, I may get noticed by some of the more popular and well known bloggers in my field. (I’ve written about the benefits of “Stalking the Popular Kids and Getting More Traffic” before.)
My initial impression is that Google+ is helping me to build brand awareness. After being notified that they’re in my Google+ circle, some bloggers are putting me in their circles. Now, that alone is not going to help me drive traffic to my site. It’s up to me to develop and implement a strategy specific to this new social networking site (a.k.a. opportunity).
Let’s hear from you! What are your thoughts about Google+? Do you think it’s going to be another Facebook? Do you feel you’re maxed out on social networking? Are you on Google+ or want to be? (I’d be happy to invite you. Just use the contact form to send me your gmail account.) If you’re interested in learning more, here are 2 articles I’ve found that may give you some additional insight:
How to Get Started With Google+, Your Complete Guide (You’ll find lots of screenshots and detailed steps by Kristi Hines on her guest post for Social Media Examiner.)
Why Google’s New Second Generation Social Network Google+ Will Threaten Facebook (Jeff Bullas offers some insight into Google’s strategy for Google+.)