At BTW images, we embrace social media, recognizing it not only helps to get the word out about our company, but helps us communicate to current and future client.  Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn are all social networks that we actively post updates.  We even post to YouTube, a semi-social network.  Doing so not only helps to spread the word about our company, but also gain ranking in the search engines.

When Google+ launched, we quickly jumped on our developer invite and set up individual accounts (branded accounts came later).  Google made it effortless to integrate into our workflow since our work on Google Analytics and Google Adwords keeps us logged in and the network knew who we were.  Once the network opened up to the general public, we quickly found some of our friends and clients and connected with them.

But the excitement quickly wore off.  Not just among us, but our friends and clients.  We noticed more and more the lag of people posting on Google+, but there was no one idle on Facebook.  Was it just one too many networks to update?  I browsed the posts today and noticed no one had updated since November 2011.

For us, we use Hoot Suite to keep our networks updated.  We can write a post and push it out to many networks.  So the additional network was no burden on our marketing.  But for the average person, they embrace a single network and use the native interface.

Currently, Google+ boasts 85 million users.  More users post photos on Google+, tend to chat more, and tend to like the interface better than it’s competition.  On my personal Facebook page, I have friends, family, clients, etc.  But where are they on Google+?  I call out to them and all I hear is an echo…

It is hard for a new network to get buy-in from the public, since a social network is not worth the time unless you have someone to be social with.  With the enormous amount of users on Facebook, the giant is certainly the way to go.  Google could implement the best cutting-edge technology and still not get the average person to get on board.

So how can Google win?  The company needs to embrace the business community.  First, the LinkedIn community is certainly up for grabs.  I love LinkedIn, but it is certainly a underused and featureless business connection medium.  Since my time on the network, I don’t recall anything new being added.  Luring over their users would be a great start.  Second would be to embrace the businesses themselves.  Google+ rolled out branded pages much later than their initial launch.  People love to visit company pages on Facebook to get information and special deals.  Most advertisers ask you to visit the Facebook page vs their own web site.  People are on Facebook, and once you like the company, you automatically get posts integrated into your news feed.  Getting businesses on board would in turn attract the average user, and let them experience the social network they have long tried to avoid.

But until then, we will keep updating the network.  So if you happen to be in Google+, come hang out with us.  We can listen to our echoes together.

Thanks for reading.