My name is Michael Rolfe at Koozai.com, and I’m going to talk to you today very briefly about something that happened which was a big event in 2011, which was the advent of Google+. So in June 2011, Google+ was launched as a limited release and now already has well over 40 million regular users. Google+, if you are not familiar, is Google’s social network. So, of course, immediately the comparison comes that it is a Facebook competitor. In some ways, yes, but more importantly, no, there are some features about Google+ which make it unique and different to using Facebook to socialise and share data and content.
For example, there are circles. You group all of the relationships you have into different circles, so one for clients, one for employees, friends, and acquaintances, and so on. It makes it very easy and straightforward to share content just with specific groups.
Another great feature about Google+ is the Hangout feature. People can get together in groups of up to ten and watch videos together, comment together, and video-conference together.
One other feature you might be interested in is Business Pages. If you have a brand you would like to promote to relationships via Google+, you can do this with Business Pages which then help get your message across.
There is a fundamental difference you see with Google+ compared to Facebook or any other social network at the moment, and that is the way the strategy is to use a social network to integrate all the Google products together. This is using, for example, the +1 button. Facebook, for example, is a closed network. You go onto Facebook, whereas Google, with the +1 button, if you +1 something in say Google Images or News or Search, then that populates the whole of the Google ecosystem. For example, if then you are on Maps, you might see that one of your friends has recommended a local restaurant with the +1 button.
Hopefully, they would hope anyway that it will all come together and it will be the newest and latest social network that everyone gets on board and uses for 2012 and forever after. With Google Buzz already having failed Google, who knows what will happen. But hopefully in 2012 we will find out.
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