Nov 072011

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13 Nov: Using G+ in different sectors – with the launch of G+ for business there’s been a flurry of posts about using G+ for particular purposes. I’ve listed some at the foot of the page.

On 27 October I attended the latest Social Media Club Copenhagen meeting on Google+ . It looks fine. Only thing is, I’m already overloaded with Twitter plus RSS feeds, and have sketchy presences on Facebook and LinkedIn. I’m really not looking for another tool to play around with, but I wanted to know if G+ offered something different.

The first speaker, Mads Kristensen, compared Google + to a candy bar. Now Danes love their slik and I wouldn’t want to overdo the metaphor, but I don’t like candy and isn’t too much bad for you? There’s a tax on it here you know…anyway, Mads described G+ as a combination of Tumblr (short multimedia posts), Twitter (hashtags, updates) and Jaiku (shortlived Finnish social network). Opinion was divided on whether posts on G+ were more thoughtful than on Facebook or Twitter, or whether people talk too much when not limited to 140 characters. I’m still a bit stuck on why you can’t just post to a blog if you’ve that much to say, but I suppose G+ increases visibility and makes commenting rather easier.

Mads’ main point was how good G+ was for knowledge sharing, and how you could use it like RSS. I’d certainly be happy to RSS people’s streams if that’s the only way to get to stuff, that’s how I first used Twitter, but as with Twitter there must be other things you can do with it. If it’s just more stuff it’s just adding to the noise.

Another speaker, Sanne Fabiola Christensen, uses G+ to meet new people and get inspiration. When she first joined she invited all her Twitter connections over, but found she was getting everything twice. So she has strategically gone out to find new people and has some daunting circles, such as 300+ people who work at Google. She dips in and out and doesn’t (I assume) read everything in her stream. I wonder if that’s an early adopter thing – I scan my RSS feeds and purge Twitter once a day most of the time. But circles are an attractive concept worth watching, particular as they are now shareable. My Twitter followers are a very disparate bunch – if I could tweet to a list I would probably tweet rather more.

Sanne also demonstrated a (video) hangout and mentioned that Danes seemed shy about participating in them. It’s not just a cultural thing though – me too, I’m an anti-social networker, thank you. In hangouts the video shows the person who is talking loudest – nice touch. I can see how hangouts would be useful in a work context,  but they don’t really fit for me at the moment.

I do get the idea of G+ as adding a social layer to the Net, and integration with other Google services could be tasty, but I’m not convinced it’s something I want on a personal level. Like all these tools it come down to how you use it. I’m information rather than people focused, and pick the channel which offers the right amount of content for me. I don’t follow SMC CPH on Facebook, for example, but get what I need from their blog and following on Twitter.

On the other hand, it will be interesting to see how G+ is used in different sectors. For example, Alan Cann of the University of Leicester has written a series of posts on how he is using G+ with his students, and The Community Roundtable explores G+ for community managers, calling for nested circles and also wary about video.

Finally, a little about the event organisation to follow up my previous post on SMC CPH’s April meeting. Booking this time by Amiando, which does much the same job as Eventbrite. I downloaded hashtagged tweets from Searchhash – there were around 75 during and shortly after the event, a manageable set for some manual analysis, although perhaps too small to offer anything really meaningful.  As an aside, it’s interesting how tweets offer more value when you have actually been at the event.

G+ for…:

  2 Responses to “Google+ at #smccph”

  1. As you mentioned, the absolute trick to adopting Google+ is not to try to replicate an existing network such as Twitter but to create and curate a new network of active Google+ users who will add value to your experience there.
    I’m A.J. Cann on Google+ :-)

  2. Thanks – enjoying your work!

    The thought of G+ pages unfortunately makes me wilt, but I’m sure someone will come up with a way of using G+ before long which will entice me.

    It’s taken me a while to find a way of using Twitter which suits as well.

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