Why Google Plus 1 is more like Google Plus 100…. and then some….

Seriously geeky blog – but worth every minute to read – as Google just change the world of digital marketing again.

When they brought out Google+ (which is an ugly name to type) they knew what they were doing. But do we all know the repercussions?

If not – read on….. if you do (i doff my hat to you – you do not need any great marketing tips)

The Google+ features announced this week are not just Google’s latest social efforts, they are part of a massive brand re-invention. Search Engine Land provided a good rundown of the new features including group video chat (Hangouts), specialized content discovery (Sparks), mobile group chat (Huddle) and the Instant Upload of Android photos to a personal folder for later sharing.

In a lengthy post on Wired, Steven Levy described Google’s overarching Emerald Sea Project with a scheduled 100+ social feature launches.

Users connect on Google+ via Circles instead of a simple friend or follow mechanism. While Circles are similar to Facebook’s Friend Lists and Groups (as well as Twitter Lists), the general consensus is that they feel like an integral part of the system as opposed to an add-on feature. GigaOm described Circles as a strong response to perhaps Facebook’s greatest weakness, the problematic binary nature of ‘Friend/Not A Friend’. Circles, coupled with Sparks delivered content, should produce significant narrow casting advertising opportunities  otherwise known at the Holy Grail (for #greatmarketing.) Most early users praised the Circles interface (designed with the help of famed Mac designer Andy Hertzfeld) but All Things Digital came up with reasons why they might prove too complicated anyway.

Hangouts, the video chat, is emerging as a possible killer app that will bring people to Google+ in large numbers. It was described as a serious threat to Skype and LifeHacker provided a giddy video demo of Hangout in action

The feature set is being well received and, while Facebook has 600 million users, Google has search, maps, YouTube, Picasa, Blogger, Android and Gmail. A new dark Google+ navigation bar already appears on some Google properties. Google+ is relatively whimsical, the profile requests ‘Bragging Rights’ and it contains animations that Google would have previously rejected as time wasters.

Google+ is still in limited field trial and invites are hard to come by. Which again is the Apple way of marketing – a clever idea of scarcity and therefore desirability. Clever use of Psychology Google. We like it #greatmarketing (something we teach small businesses about guerrilla marketing)but the fact that, yours truly, can’t get access as Google is punishing their early adopters who use Google Apps – is annoying to say the least!!!

Your Marketing Trainer – don’t like to wait 🙂


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