3 reasons why I’m changing my mind about G+

Jenny Fukumoto

I’m on Google+. But haven’t checked it for more than a month.

I think a lot of millennials feel the same way.

When I attended a SXSW fireside chat between two social media power personalities, I still had the mindset that G+ is a digital graveyard.

“You all must be Casper the ghost!” joked Vic Gundotra at the sight of half the SXSW audience raising their hands to being on G+.

According to Gundotra, Google’s SVP of Engineering, there are 100 million “30-day actives” (people who log into their profile at least once per month) and 50 million “one-day actives” (those who log in daily).

After listening to the talk, here are three reasons why I will take the time to become a more active user:

1. I believe Google isn’t indexing our information for “evil”

I know storing customers’ internet activity is the norm today, but it still freaks me out. And having my Google searches tied back to my Google+ persona has always had me wondering what that information could be used for.

It was clear that Vic Gundotra understands the importance of customers’ trust. Kawasaki asked the question that was on the minds of most audience members: Where do you cross the line?

“If we lose the users’ trust we can lose you to competitors very easily,” he said.

In other words, it doesn’t make sense for the #1 search engine to use your information in a way that creeps you out. Google needs to stay on top, and being disingenuous will bring that accomplishment down.

The motive behind capturing your information is not to start injecting ads into your photo albums, said Gundotra, taking a not-so-subtle stab at major competitor Facebook.

2. Social annotation is the advertising concept of the future

According to Gundotra, social annotation is the idea that when someone in your circles +1s an ad s/he likes, then it will show up in a relevant search for you. We have seen a more general application of this concept in location-based marketing platforms, but not in a search engine.

If Google can get this right, it means customers will need to put less effort into seeking out relevant information.

3. It’s still a baby!

Do you remember where Facebook was 6 months into its public release? We were still trying to find further value in it than keeping in touch with high school and college friends.

I believe that as G+ becomes more integrated with other social media platforms, and easier to share on, it will have the potential become more relevant than Facebook.

What do you think? Will you continue to add to your circles? Or abandon ship?

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2 thoughts on “3 reasons why I’m changing my mind about G+

  1. Another thing to point out about G+:
    The people who do use it, use it regularly and don’t post photos of a drunken night. Sites like Facebook captured attention because everyone was using it and the site became another form of communication for long-distance friendships. G+, on the other hand, has had a very loyal following of people who care about (what I would consider to be) the more important issues.
    Posts from the G+ world tend to make me scratch my chin and contemplate how a post applies to my own life, rather than taking advantage of a short-bout of ADD and tickling my funny bone in the process.
    I wouldn’t mind G+’s following remaining small, as long as the content remained the same.

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