"Add some features & we can charge more."
"Build the social media tool & they'll switch as long as we give it away for free."
Let me start this post by stating I am in no way endorsing either Facebook or Google+ as the winning platform in the silent but very loud virtual boxing match we all know is happening.
The purpose of this post is to explain WHY I believe people are not going to immediately migrate to the Google+ network just because they are ticked off at Facebook.
A few facts: (Source: Facebook)
- Facebook has 750 million active users
- Average Facebook user is connected to 80 community pages, groups & events
- Average Facebook user creates 90 pieces of content each month
- Facebook users install 20 million applications every day
- More than 30 billion pieces of content are shared each month.
- 250+ million people engage with Facebook on external website every month
- On average 10,000 new websites integrate with Facebook every day since social plug-ins launched April, 2010.
- 2.5+ million websites have integrated with Facebok
- 250+ million active users currently access Facebook via their mobile devices
- 200+ mobile operators in 60 countries work to deploy and promote Facebook mobile products
Bottom line, the social ecosystem looks a lot different now than when Facebook came along. MySpace didn't have the footprint, the mindprints or the handprints that Facebook does today.
Facebook knows more about us than half of us know about ourselves. You can read a post I recently wrote on this topic "Got Facebook Data? They Got Yours!"
Do you really think that Facebook is going to give up that easy? They aren't going to let the launch of a beta platform keep them from continuing to build out their platform, grab more of our data and figure out how they can monetize every click, share, like and look we give them for free!
We like Google+ because it's NOT Facebook!
I have really enjoyed my time on Google+ as a beta participant. However, when I really think about why I am enjoying it, it is for all the reasons that go against what it would take to knock Facebook out of the ring.
I like the fact that it's just us geeks. I love the fact that I can have more personal conversations with people I have only sent a few tweets with prior.
There is something about removing the "Facebook" like that makes people feel more real, more connected and less intimidated. Is it also because the masses aren't on the platform yet. However, it's also because we aren't confined. We don't feel controlled. We aren't yet worried about if our post is going to show top or bottom of a news feed based on how many +1′s we have. There is no Google+ edge rank... YET!
What is an ecosystem, really? And why can't it move like the good ol' days?
It shouldn't be that hard to move at least a portion, maybe 250 million people during the 2nd half of 2011, right? Wrong, think again!
1. Facebook has ruined it for other honest players. Our guard is up. Facebook has taken advantage of our privacy. They've taken advantage of my grandma and my mom as most people don't have a clue where to look for their privacy settings.
2. The ecosystem has a love / hate relationship with Facebook. Bottom line we love to hate them.
3. Aunt Marybelle, Granny & dad aren't going to move to Google+ before Christmas no matter what happens.
4. You'll still post the baby pics on Facebook for granny to see even if you live on Google+ all day with your geek buddies.
5. Even if they wanted to move, moving 750 million people can't happen over night.
6. Granny doesn't hate Facebook as much as you do.
7. Many businesses just invested in Facebook business pages, training for sales, customer service, PR and marketing teams.
8. Social media & marketing agencies are not going to push clients who have invested in Facebook to jump ship to Google+. Why would they when they have a multi-million dollar retainer developing, designing, and managing their online presence and ad placement much of which is Facebook. Agencies wouldn't think to push clients to Facebook until there is a majority and return on investment can be better justified even if intangible in numbers.
9. Yes, early adopters will obviously jump on both ships. However, to move an ecosystem we're talking about more than early adopters.
10. Similar to #1, we have been burned. We all know Google has a plan to monetize. We fear Google+ will start to copy it's virtual boxing partner, Facebook.
So the question we have to ask ourselves...
is Granny really the deciding player to decide what platform has a chance at knocking Facebook out of the ring?
Check out Robert Scoble's entertaining article on why Granny won't use Google+