Google Plus: time to take stock?
As a performance measurement analyst, but no less adept and user of social networks, I firmly believe in the voice of the consumer (Voice Of Customer). It is well known: what better than to get direct verbal feedback from your own customers or users. So I wanted to reconcile the two, and conduct my own survey on the use and adoption rate of Google's (not so new) social network, I named Google Plus. To do this, I used… the Facebook questions, in a survey which is, I must add, nothing scientific, but the results of which speak for themselves while corroborating my own opinions on Google+.
I must admit: I took this survey because I have had difficulty imagining a bright future for Google's social network since its first weeks of existence. Of course, like everyone else, I was overexcited when I managed to get my premiere invitation, during the breach that had opened up at the end of June, before Google decided that very evening to close the invitations. I was learning about Google+'s great user interface, "circling" and getting myself surrounded by the few people who got access, and sending invites when it was still possible. I post from time to time. But, quite quickly, weariness won over me. Tired of seeing only articles on Google Plus that talked about the fluguring rise and numbers of Google Plus users, tired of seeing that Google Plus only interested technophiles and geeks, I went there less and least, for today only go for a walk once a month, and again. I expected a refreshed Facebook, I found a mixture of Facebook and Twitter (especially by the non-existent principle of reciprocity) which represented another social network to manage. In a word: disappointment.
So I wanted to conduct a quick and unscientific survey to get an idea of the use of Google Plus among my 385 Facebook friends. To add a modicum of legitimacy to this poll, I should point out that my Facebook friends are both savvy geeks and "normal" social media users, and that I opened the poll to friends of my friends, to seek votes outside of my own network of friends. Finally, I tried not to influence the votes too much with open-ended answers.
The question: "Google Plus Survey: Are you an active Google+ user?" I want to get an idea of its actual adoption. Thanks !
Here is the detail of the possible answers accompanied by the number of votes received for each of them:
- Yes. I'm going to give up Facebook soon! (0 votes)
- Yes. I found the balance between Google+ and Facebook. (7 votes)
- Not really. I go there from time to time to see what's going on. (36 votes)
- No. I don't know... I don't care! (29 votes)
- Nope ! I already have my network on Facebook, why reinvent the wheel?! (5 votes)
- Uh… what exactly is Google+? (0 votes)
THE RESULTS DISCUSSED
If we analyze the results of the 77 votes of my Facebook friends and their friends, certain conclusions emerge very clearly:
- Everyone knows or has at least heard of Google+, but no one is ready to completely abandon Facebook in favor of Google+,
- 12 voters are certain of their choice: 5 voters said they had no interest in Google+, 7 voters said they had found the balance between Facebook and Google+ (and have continued to publish on Google+ regularly since),
- 65 voters are still hesitant about Google+, they consult it from time to time, or do not feel attracted more than that by Google+.
I believe that one word can sum up the results of this survey: uncertainty.
Many people, like me, got on Google+ "because they had to", "because they had to stay in the game". Today, their Google+ network is there, just like mine, a little abandoned. And we go back to see what's going on from time to time, in case a revolution comes up. Out of the question, however, at this point, to permanently give up Google+ and delete your account... in case a major change takes place!
From my point of view, I expected such a breakdown of the results, but I wanted to corroborate it with the help of a survey. And even if, once again, this one is not scientific, the answers obtained do not seem to me a surprise.
AND AFTER ?
At a time when articles on the impending death or decline of Google Plus since its launch abound on the web (to Google's chagrin!), where the famous business pages are still slow to arrive and where business opportunities on Google's social network are currently only at the ideation stage, it seems to me that Google should work even harder to raise their new little toy.
It is also possible, and this is only my humble opinion, that Google+ arrives too late on the chessboard of social networks. A kind of “too little, too late“, more than 5 years after the public version of Facebook and the launch of Twitter.
What do you think ? Do you believe that Google+ still has a future? Do you think Google has more than one string to its bow and is preparing a revolution, or that Google+ will meet the same tragic fate as its predecessors Wave and Buzz? Let's discuss it!