Blog Post

The competitive prospects of Google+

Google+ looks like Google’s best effort yet in social media. To get a handle on industry reaction to Google+, we did a quick survey over the Fourth of July weekend of 451 GigaOM readers on Google+’s chances for success, its competitive weapons and its likely impact on other social companies. In a new research note at GigaOM Pro (subscription required), we analyze the results.

Why does asking GigaOM’s readership make sense? Because, as we suspected, they’re radically early adopters, as the 69 percent of respondents that said they’ve tried Google+ shows.

Source: GigaOM Pro

We asked this early adopter audience what kind of impact they expected Google+ to have on the competition. What did they think? As shown in the chart above, survey respondents think Google+ will have the biggest impact on Facebook and Skype, while companies like Twitter and LinkedIn won’t feel as much heat.

Why Facebook and Skype?

A few select quotes from the survey’s open-ended responses (the best of which are in the research note)* may give you a clue.

On Facebook

“Google+ has the potential to be a Facebook without the ‘my life is better/worse than yours’ component. Instead, it can shift the focus from digitally stalking your ‘friends’ to making authentic human connections how and with whom you choose.”

On Skype

“Google+ makes video chat an obvious choice rather than a secondary offering just to remain competitive. Initiating a hangout is intuitive. Combined with Circles, Google+ can be a place to share information with friends, family, and coworkers — even as a place to get work done — that moves the ‘social network’ idea to the next logical place.”

That’s not to say that Google won’t have to work hard to compete in the social media space, and the company’s past flops in this area only underscore that fact. For more on Google+’s competitive outlook, and to see more of the survey results, read the full research note at GigaOM Pro.

*To protect the identities of the respondents, we have not included names with any of the quotes.

Disclosure: Automattic, the maker of, is backed by True Ventures, a venture capital firm that is an investor in the parent company of this blog, Giga Omni Media. Om Malik, the founder of Giga Omni Media, is also a venture partner at True.

8 Responses to “The competitive prospects of Google+”

  1. Facebook come and popular early, then came google +, what they will be equally great, or just the opposite, but both have their respective advantages, we’ll see

    • @AS – Thanks for your thoughts. We did want to share some of the results with the GigaOM readership, so that’s what we did here. We made it clear in our post we were asking for opinions for a research piece for GigaOM Pro, as well as offered an incentive in the form of a chance of winning some gift card for those that took the survey.

      • Michael,

        Thanks for the response. Yes, I do understand that you guys were very upfront from the beginning about sharing the results on Gigaom Pro and I appreciate that. When I responded to the survey, I had just gotten into G+ and used it for only a few hours. But now that I have been playing with it a lot more, I am curious what the initial survey results were. So, I am wondering if you guys might make an exception this once and open up this piece to all your readers.

        Another suggestion I have for you guys – open up all or selected old Gigaom Pro articles after a certain time (2 years?) has passed, when you are confident that there is not much more value in keeping them behind the pay wall. In fact, by doing so, you might actually get some more mileage out of those old pieces than you would otherwise. Something to consider?

        Thanks again.

        A S