When Google+ launched in 2011 it turned out to be a damp squib. It was described by many as the party that nobody came to and came in for a lot of criticism. However, 2 years on and perhaps it’s fairer to say that G+ wasn’t a failure at all. It was just a little slow off the blocks.
Now that there’s a party that we can all join, how can employers take advantage of the functionality to build brand and community? How can we use the rather nifty functionality to take advantage of what could be the most powerful tool in your armoury for having conversations with the people you need.
The answer’s quite complex and certainly more than we could cover in a single blog. So, we’re tackling this in a five parts. Each week we’ll cover some of the individual features that G+ offers its members and look at how others have successfully used the site to their advantage.
But is it really a party that we want to be at? Is the kitchen full of interesting people or should we come back a bit later when more people have arrived? After all, a social network isn’t very social if nobody’s using it, is it? We’ll, something that might surprise most of you is that G+ is actually the second largest social network, behind only Facebook.
In May 2013 it had 343 million active users. This means that people were regularly sharing content with the public, their circles and updating their profiles. That’s a 33% increase from the same point last year meaning that it’s outpaced Twitter for growth.
What’s even more interesting is the fact that this growth only looks set to increase. As this research from searchmetrics shows, by 2016 G+ could well take its place as the most popular social network.
It’s hardly surprising when you think about it. It’s free, clean and streamlined. Not to mention the unique features it offers its users and the fact that one password gives you access to all of Google.
If you have never been on G+, I’d suggest taking a few minutes to activate your profile. You don’t need to set up loads of new information – if you use YouTube, Google Maps, Gmail, Google Drive, Google Docs or any of the Google suite, then you simply need to enter the same username and password.
We’re not saying G+ is the be-all and end-all. There’ll always be a time and a place for Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. But G+ sits in nicely in it’s own niche:
G+ is where you speak with people that you’d like to know.
Next week we’ll talk to you about Google Circles. We’ll explore what they are, how they’re used and what you can be doing to build individual talent communities that are united by the same passions and interests.