July 14, 2011

Google+: A Full-Court Press on Facebook

As seen with the hefty valuations of companies like LinkedIn (NYSE:LNKD), Twitter and Facebook, the social networking space is too important for Google (Nasdaq:GOOG) to be a laggard.

True, the company has had several missteps, like Buzz and Wave. But its latest attempt, Google+, may have the right stuff.

Keep in mind that Google has a good track record when it comes to dominating big markets. Just look at the company’s online video business as well as the Android operating system.

So can Google+ do the same? What will be the impact?

Here are some thoughts from top people in tech:

Bismarck Lepe, the co-founder and president of products at Ooyala: “For Google, this is not about creating the most popular social networking site. With Google Search, Chrome, Gmail, Android and YouTube, Google has more web information on more people than any other company in the world. With Google+, Google is validating the trend of the personalization of content. Today the consumer is in the driver’s seat.”

Chad Bockius, the CEO of Socialware: “Of course, one must pay attention to technology news like the availability of Google+ coming from a firm with the scale and resources of Google, but the jury is still out on how Google+ will impact the other social networks. Yet for business executives, they should be thinking about how they want their firms to work with social media regardless of the network. Google+ once again shows that social media is not waiting for them.”

Aaron Everson, COO of Shoutlet: “Google+ is the only possible, formidable competitor to Facebook due to its existing business model and integrated services. Google has made it abundantly clear that it’s consolidating a number of its product lines in an ‘all in’ move to Google+. They disabled the Twitter-powered Realtime Search feature that displayed tweets on search results and will clearly begin integrating Google+ activity into the search result pages. They’ve also folded in Picasa (photos), Chat, and Voice & Video (Hangouts), and even contacts and suggestions from Gmail. And don’t forget the 500m+ users on YouTube. Connecting the 50m+ Gmail users and integrating photos, videos, calendars, business apps, checkout, and other features could give Google a real shot.”

John Corpus, CEO of Milyoni: “Having Google+ enter the scene is a double-edged sword. On the plus side, competition is always good and Facebook may have to modify its roadmap and policies to accommodate Google+ advantages and keep third party developers loyal. On the downside, if Google+ is as successful as early signals seem to indicate, then Facebook merchants will have to split their budget to reach both social networks for maximum coverage. It’s like having two newspapers in town, you have to advertise twice.”

Lyle Fong, the CEO and Co-Founder of Lithium: “Active Facebook users at some point face a conundrum – either they don’t accept friend requests from all of their coworkers, acquaintances and distant family members and risk being viewed as elitist, or they accept all requests to be nice, but then find themselves having to censor or sanitize their own posts. In either case, Facebook becomes less useful over time. Google+, with their circles functionality, can be game changing if they can address this core problem.”

by Tom Taulli,

News, Social Media Marketing
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