By B.L. Ochman
Dear Google: You’re doing a great job of promoting Google Glass. Launching GooglePlus? (Which I love!) Not so good. In fact: terrible.
Google has generated huge amounts of earned media with a Tom Sawyerish promotion of Google Glass. They got people to apply to spend $1500 on the prototype and then doled out the first 8.000 samples to the people likely to spread the most interesting news about their uses for Google Glass.
Google chose well. There’s been a Google Glass marriage proposal and a Google Glass video of an arrest and an NBA draft pick interview caught on Google Glass, plus scores of “my first Google Glass days” accounts.
Why Everyone is so confused about Google+
Effusive praise of GooglePlus – arguably the most important social platform yet – not so much. In fact, there is a lot of “Google+ is a ghost town”. There’s even an “I hate GooglePlus” Facebook page!
And, dear Google, do you want to know why so many people are confused about GooglePlus? Because Google has published too much information, too many videos, and mountains of instructions that can only be described as unclear.
Here, for example, is Google’s explanation of the +1 button that is Google’s version of the Facebook Like (but not really.)
Impossible explanations abound
I defy anyone to read this and understand the difference between Hangout Parties and Hangouts on Air
I’ll explain – Hangout Parties are video chats you can have with friends and family. They aren’t recorded and you won’t end up with a video you can post on YouTube. They are only for the invited guests.
Hangouts on Air are automatically recorded – and any number of people can watch them if you’ve told them the broadcast will be happening. The videos are automatically posted to your YouTube channel, if you have one. (By the way, Google ruined the way yours looks a couple of weeks ago when they turned your cover photo into a big black blob without telling you) You can edit them and search optimize them from within your channel.
Then there are just plain Hangouts. Which are not recorded. Got that?
Ample rewards for learning GooglePlus
Want to learn about GooglePlus? There are user forums, user communities, Google’s own myriad of posts, videos, PDF, slide shows, and blogs.
Why is there so much information? Because engineers run Google. Brilliant engineers who create really great products that they are not good at explaining to ordinary mortals.
Google’s making Google Plus sound a lot more complicated than it is. The bottom line is that GooglePlus is so rich in features and benefits to engaged users that if can make one’s head spin. But that’s a good thing.
And the reward for taking the time to learn about it is better search placement, hugely active communities of specialists and experts who gleefully share information and kindly help newbies.
Don’t believe the naysayers.
They are, in a word, wrong about GooglePlus.
If you need a guide, I’m available for hire and I’d love to help you learn to take advantage of the many wonderful features of GooglePlus, teach you how to make it work for your brand, and turn you into a convert.
Dear Google: Call me! (917-566-5855)
And, dear Google, I’m also available to consult to you on how to simplify all the “help” information you’ve created.
You’re spot on, BL.
After hosting the helpful webinar with you as the guest expert, and your crystal clear instructions, Google went and changed everything on Google+. I can’t count the number of times I try to do something, or find something, or share something on Google+ and end of up just scratching my head….and leaving.
BL Fans: If you’re reading this and you’re thinking of hiring her to sort through the mess, do it! She’s fabulous.
Thanks for the plug Joan! I’ve spent a whole bunch of time keeping up with GooglePlus and I think it’s a terrific platform.
I can’t wait to show brands and entrepreneurs how it works. Guy Kawasaki said “GooglePlus is the Apple Computer of social media platforms.” less people use it, but it’s the best!
Great article, B.L. As an advertising strategist, it is very important for me to keep up with the evolution in social media. While Facebook’s growth has been phenomenal, G+’s growth has been nothing short of stunning, and I confess it got ahead of me for a while! Another very helpful person to connect with for his great video tutorials on Google hangouts is Ronnie Bincer. http://www.youtube.com/user/VideoLeadsOnline
Ok, I used to be a fan of google+ until my account was suspended. Because of my user name. The same as my email account name, which no one at Google seems to have a problem with. I am a hairdresser. My clients call me Hairgod. What is so offensive about that? The worst part is, I tried several times to contest the suspension, but Google+ just simply ignores me. So if you are such an expert, and I believe you are, what can I do? And I am starting to wonder if I even care.
I wish I had an answer for you. If you have another email address and another G+ page, you can contact Google there. or try them on Twitter, or LinkedIn.
Sorry, but they’re notoriously unresponsive to issues with us “little people”.