Two days ago, I did a 15 minute video blog about why I thought Google may have finally found a way to do social and to drive a wedge in the Facebook monolith. The video quality wasn’t great, so I’ll summarize here:
From all the previews I’ve seen, the Circles feature looks really promising. I’ve always wanted an easy, intuitive, built-in way to share certain things to specific groups, and I feel like Facebook’s lists and groups are too cumbersome, mostly because they were an afterthought. By all accounts, Google+ was built around the Circles concept.
Google users don’t need to opt into Google+ or rebuild their entire social graph. Google+ is a social layer, the big picture of all the other services combined (see black bar). If you’re already on Google, you’re already on Google+ (once it rolls out to you). Because so many of us who work in creative fields or freelance use Gmail as a professional address, Google+ is a natural place to begin drawing circles around what we want to share privately, with friends only, with family, and with bosses, coworkers, and clients. This may mean that adults who are already using Gmail will be the early Google+ adopters and will use it for easy sharing to their professional and social graphs. Which leads me to the next piece:
If creatives and other professionals in their 20s-40s make Plus their own, the Facebook demographic might get much, much younger This is what happened to MySpace. Maybe it sounds far-fetched, but Facebook was built for college kids and has been retrofitting for adult use ever since. Google+ was designed the managing of adult relationships (business, personal, and so on) as a core concern. It’s different by design. I’m going to hop on soon and see if I am right.