As those not living under a rock already know, Google+ went from exclusive “invite-only” mode yesterday to “all aboard, anyone aboard!” with a promotion for the company’s social network on Google’s high traffic homepage. I noticed a surge in people adding me on Google+, and others who’ve been on the social network for a while can expect the same now that the floodgates are open. (Which is a very good thing, by the way. A social network without lots of fresh users on it will not survive for long.)
Anyway. Today, on Google’s homepage, visitors are greeted with this message: “Watch a live Google+ hangout with will.i.am tonight at 9p ET.”
I meandered over to will.i.am’s Google Plus profile, and while I can’t say for certain it was set up by a record company exec or a publicist, the only unique contribution from him recently that isn’t a post to one of his videos on YouTube, or a collection of PR-style photos, is this blindingly brilliant technological analysis: “this is pretty dope… i cant wait for the hang out session+” — come on, Google. Update: It’s actually him, as confirmed by Google executive Vic Gundotra. My cynicism about the celebrity-media industrial complex is misguided, for once.
You don’t need to court celebrities, though, Google gang. Unless you are trying to become Twitter 2.0. I thought you had greater ambitions: Facebook’s jugular. Between your teeth.
If destroying Facebook is the end goal, make the real argument on your homepage with some bullet points as to why Google+ is worth using:
– More meaningful connections with friends and strangers alike.
– Deeper conversations.
– Circles eliminate the awkwardness of an unrequited friend request.
– Run by a company that’s far more responsible with sensitive communications and your personal info than the 20-year-old flip-flop wearing coders at Facebook.
– The more people who use Google+, the more your Google search experience will improve and be tailored to you based on what your colleagues like.
Those are compelling arguments. You don’t need a video chat with will.i.am or Lady Gaga or anyone else to get the Internet on board your new network. You just need to tell them the truth; it’s better than Facebook.
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