- The Mistaken Identity of Google+
- Google's Reach
- Understanding the Social Ramifications of a Changing Internet
- Choosing to Ride the Wave
In this digital age, businesses are constantly looking for new ways to leverage social networks to help them grow and stay a step ahead of their competition. In the past, companies had focused their time and energy on networks like Facebook and Twitter, but with the addition of Google+ in 2011, these organizations are beginning to rethink their social networking strategy (see Figure 1).
Figure 1 The social networking giants.
The Mistaken Identity of Google+
One of the biggest mistakes companies make is thinking of Google+ as a social network. While Google+ certainly offers huge social aspects, it's much more of a social membrane, meant to connect all of the Internet, than just another social network. (Figure 2 shows how rapidly it's growing.) By contrast, Facebook is a social network. It has considerable power in its more than 850 million users, but the network itself works within the closed system and framework of Facebook.
But Facebook's real power is actually in the data it collects and stores about its users. Many people fail to accept that, at the end of the day, Facebook is an advertising company, just like Google. The difference between the two is that Facebook's power is limited to reaching the users on its network, while Google has its fingers in more of the Internet than you may realize.