LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner made his thoughts about where Google+ fits in the social network arena known to the public at an event this week.
Weiner believes that with Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn well established in the market and people already spending a good amount of time on them, you have no room or even "any free time" for one additional social networking platform.
Here's my prediction: Google+ won't usurp the throne from Facebook. It will instead grow into a strong, competitive player and much-needed alternative, much as Google's Chrome has with Microsoft's Internet Explorer. That would leave Facebook as the largest player, but one without a dominant share of the social networking market. I predict that when this game is done playing, there will be no more thrones.
Based on my investigative research along with the CN international team of researchers, here are the companies that are clearly dead because of the Google+ launch A little sarcastic. But still with some clues?
Facebook remains a behemoth, but G+ has actually succeeded in exploiting a couple weaknesses of FB that I didn't really notice until an alternative was presented: 1. Poor handling of friend lists 2. Friend decay 3. Confusing privacy controls 4. Facebook groups
Ultimately I hope that Facebook pays attention and improves its own services -- that'll be great for consumers.
How is it Google+ competes with Facebook and Twitter? I plotted Google+’s features against comparable features in both Facebook and Twitter. The objective was to understand:
- Why are people thinking of Google+ as competitor to both existing social networks? - How did the Google team make use of the best of both services? The chart below is shows where Google+ is more like Facebook or Twitter. The red check marks (√) and gray shading highlight which service a Google+ feature is more like.
For the past couple weeks, a select gathering of us (likely including many Search Engine Watch readers) have been playing with Google+. It's an interesting social media experiment by Google, but it is likely to remain that. Another "almost ran" in the social media game; another Google property that just won't quite make it. Here are five reasons why. 1. Usability 2. Verbiage 3. Usefulness 4. Purpose 5. Convenience
Bill Gross is the founder of prolific business incubator Idealab and its Twitter app builder and buyer Ubermedia; he's wrangled with Twitter headquarters over access to the Twitter API and reportedly tried (unsuccessfully) to outbid Twitter to acquire leading desktop Twitter client Tweetdeck.
But can you guess what Gross is hot on now? Google Plus - the new Google social network launched late last month that's been stealing the hearts, minds and time of many Twitter power players. Today Gross wrote that he believes Plus may be the fastest social network in history to hit 1 million users and he predicts it will become the fastest network ever to hit 100 million. That's a bold prediction that if accurate could point to some serious social networking disruption.
LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner raised a few eyebrows Monday when he forecast the demise of Google+, which has been attracting attention and gaining momentum. Speaking at a Churchill Club event in Santa Clara, Calif., on Monday, Weiner was reportedly asked if there is a limit to the number of social networks that can successfully exist. He said there is a limit and predicted that Google+will fail in the shadow of Facebook.
LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner sees no way Facebook and Google+ can both exist, and says it's likely Google+ will come out on the losing end of the battle. Weiner obviously has a slanted view on the social networking market because in his mind, no matter what the other players are, LinkedIn will always be relevant, which certainly can be disputed. But, on a meta level, he had a pretty salient observation of social network functions in a recent Business Insider article. There are three main, distinct purposes for a social network: "microcasting" all the latest goings-on in your life (Twitter), managing your professional life (LinkedIn), and connecting with friends and family.
Put it bluntly: if Twitter Is batshit crazy enough to implement even half of the things that Robert Scoble lays out, they will effectively kill their own product. Of course, we can rest-assured knowing that Twitter is very likely not[/i] this foolish. After being in business for a full five years, they must know by now that their strength is not to mimic every just-launched and hot-right-now new social network (in this case, Google+). Their strength is to remain true to what got them to where they are now: simplicity.
If Google+ really works, Google will be creating a massive amount of new "conversational media" inventory, the very kind of marketing territory currently under development over at Tumblr and Twitter. Sure, the same could be said of Facebook, but I think that story has been well told. Google+ is a threat to Facebook, but for other reasons. The threat to Tumbrl and Twitter feels more existential in nature.
Let's look at a typical flow for Tumblr, Twitter and Google+.
It has become clear to me that the real win for Google isn't slaying some other social network. It's all about what Google gains from playing its favorite game -- content.
One of the most active uses of Google Plus so far (and I'm sure many, many more will evolve) is the sharing of content -- all forms of content. I've been around Twitter and Facebook since they began public offerings, and nothing compares to the level of content sharing I've experienced so far on Google Plus.
The goal for Google+ is not to win social networking outright, or to kill any competitors, but to disrupt the social networking economy with a big enough, good enough and popular enough service that the walled gardens (Facebook in particular) are forced to open up interoperability enough that their users can communicate with the significant enough number of people in their lives that use a different social network.