Social Media and KloutInteresting questions being asked in the blogosphere. Obviously, Google + has drawn a lot of attention since its launch, but already people are discussing its demise.

Cynic that I am, it is hard not to wonder whether the mass exodus from Facebook to Google + and the breaking of the FB habit, was an intended or unintended consequence of G+. For instance, from checking FB every day, for both clients and personal reasons, I actually find that on a weekly basis, I now *only* remember that FB exists because of the need to check client sites. On a personal basis, the vast majority of posts to the FB wall are automated anyway from other social media posts such as Stumbleupon, Twitter, Delicious etc.

Do I check Facebook hourly any longer? No. Do you?

It is interesting how far behind the major brands are with actuality, in that now nearly every TV advert has a facebook.com/thisisus URL rather than a website URL. But have your audience moved away from FB? Have you invested a vast number in Facebook marketing only to find that the numbers are falling away?

Google + has only just worked out verified accounts i.e. those for people who wander the internet under pseudonyms, handles etc. Business accounts have not yet been rolled out and to be honest, you would not choose to invest marketing budget in Google + if you were a brand anyway. Not yet, anyway as there is far too much work for our Mountain friends to do yet.

Google + may leave a legacy of Hangouts – the only thing I personally feel right now stands out from G+ – but it is being surpassed by sites such as Subjot.com on a daily basis. Circles lose quite spectacularly to Subjot right now. Probably because the subject structure is given to you whereas no-one can tell you what to name any circle you choose to put friends in.

Infinite choices on the Internet are not good.

What comes next? Well, the first thing has to be that everyone is now exhausted with trying out new things, new places to check in, update a status, share, or rabbit about the inanities of their day. Enough now!

Whatever comes next that will pick up an audience has to be a game changer, not a rehash of what has gone before. In a way, that may be why Google + has failed so far. It was too “samey.” There was no mould breaking. It just became another drain on your time.

It could have been amazing, but with hindsight, maybe Google and Facebook were so busy trying to do outdo each other, they forgot the customer/ user experience. They forgot us!

If Google had only launched Hangouts, as a stand alone option, it would have taken off. Interestingly, Hangouts can now be started within Youtube and it surely will not be long before you can start, record and broadcast a Hangout with minimal fuss. THAT will be a winner.

As part of the big picture of Google +, and particularly for marketers and brnads, little else, right now from Google + seems to stand out sufficiently to detract marketing budget from any of the other equally outdated resources that the Board love.

Yet, Stumbleupon drives 50% of social media traffic according to the latest stats – how much social bookmarking are *you* doing???

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About the author:

A practising internet marketing consultant since 1996, Lindsey Annison helps companies improve their website marketing, online PR and information architecture. Lindsey is also a qualified adult education lecturer and author. As co-founder of the Access to Broadband Campaign, she has been instrumental in the provision of high-speed internet access to rural areas in the UK. Lindsey is also a past winner of Silicon.com's Outstanding Contribution to UK Technology