On June 28 Google launched the Google+ Project, which is billed as real life sharing, rethought for the web. Simply put, Google+ is a social network that allows you to easily communicate with various groups of people, each in a specific and decisive way.
Google+ is currently being marketed towards individuals as social destination. Through the videos and content produced by Google, Google+ is marketed as a way to separate your work friends from college buddies, and family from acquaintances. Google+ allows you to communicate with each group of people separately, so that you can feel more comfortable sharing information with the group of people that you want to.
Aside from personal relationships, Google+ is going to have an impact on businesses. But as with every social network, platform or tool, it will have a different type of affect and purpose for each organization. Here are a few things that all businesses can expect:
1. New features for Facebook pages: After Twitter became popular Facebook quickly modified its news feed to include real-time updates from users, and it is no secret that Facebook employees (including Mark Zuckerberg) have been quick to sign up for Google+ and ask people for their feedback. Expect Facebook to soon offer some of the features that Google+ members find most beneficial.
2. Better internal communication: Google+ could become an extremely valuable internal communications platform, especially at large companies. It allows businesses to separate people by department, level and location, and have focused real-time conversations on every topic within those groups. In some ways, it is like a Yammer on steroids. It can also be beneficial if businesses want to conduct real-time meetings via the web, especially if people are in different geographical locations.
3. A new channel for better user relationships: Businesses using Google+ will have the opportunity to directly communicate with circles of users. Using Apple as an example, there could be various set up to communicate directly with Apple users. One can be made up of key enthusiasts, influences and evangelists, one of early adopters, another of general users, and even location-specific Apple customers. Apple can then communicate with each one of these groups differently, in a way that will best engage each audience member.
These three areas address what we should expect to see from Google+. However, it is important to remember that this platform is still very young, and a lot can change depending on how well (and quickly) it can attract and handle users, and how people decide to use the platform.
Also please note that Google+ is currently available by invitation only, and it has been difficult for many people to get on the site. The best thing to do is find someone who is already registered that can send you an invitation, or sign up on the homepage and wait for an email invitation from Google.