So you are a business owner, maybe a small brick and mortar store. Over the past year or so, you developed a business page on Facebook. You’ve invested time in posting and replying to posts, worked hard to built ‘Likes’ and done what’s necessary to develop a relationship and engage with your community on your page. Maybe your business is on twitter as well. I am sure you have found out that is a real investment of time.
Now here comes Goggles beta of Google +. While at this time Google + is only for individuals they have said that by the end of the year that they will be opening it up to brands and businesses. So what does all this mean?
As a business owner who in this economy is probably doing more for less, that’s exactly what Google+ means for you, more for less! The pundits are predicting that Google+ will reach 100 million users faster than any other medium. If that is the case where are these 100 million people coming from, you guessed it, Facebook, and twitter.
Is Google+ so different and people have so much time on their hands that they’re going to dedicate more time to social media or will the time come from Facebook and Twitter? I’m thinking the latter. It something that has happened with traditional media.
Much like as a business owner you buy a specific radio format in your market. A low rated station flips its format to the same format that you are buying now. Does that mean more people will listen to radio, nope. It means that you are paying the same amount to reach fewer listeners, and maybe you now have to buy both stations instead of the one to cover that formats demographic. Fragmentation at your expense.
Looking for a positive? Think of the SEO possibilities that Google+ may come with. It is certainly a huge advantage that Google controls the alga rhythms of SEO. What do you think is going to rank higher, a Google+ page or a Facebook page? So not all may be lost for the small brick and mortar business owner, there could be some decent trade-offs.
Competition can also bring the best out in companies and services. I would expect to see Facebook make some tweaks over the 6 months and who knows what they may come up with. Certainly, this is not the end of fragmentation but only the beginning, but remember that the stronger your presence in social media is, the easier it is to adapt and move your presence to a newer better platform.