Since the upstart of Google Plus, it has been increasing its popularity at a very fast rate. Shockingly enough, at a faster rate than Facebook had when it was first started. Google Plus has recently climbed over 170 million users sharing information and ideas with their social circles, all within its first year of operation. Facebook, while it is clearly the most popular social media platform, may not be in the driver’s seat for too long, with Google Plus right on their back.
First, let’s look at the positives of each site. Facebook has top quality privacy settings; you can even make it so that your friends can’t view everything on your page. Privacy settings are a huge factor among social media sites because you never know who is going to try to get in contact with you, whether it is people that you know or that you don’t know. In addition, Facebook is much more business friendly than their competitor Google Plus. A small business can create a fan page with a purpose to build business, and in many cases, it does. People like your Facebook fan page and that travels through their social circles, and in addition to people liking your page you will get more business due to folks wanting to see what the hype is about. Take a local restaurant (a favorite of mine is Tweed’s) for example, if a local person likes your page and has a few out of town friends visit, they won’t need to ask where a good place to go is because they will have seen on Facebook that your place is local favorite.
Google Plus has a couple of useful tools as well. They were the first to institute the video chat tool, which is really convenient for users that conduct business online. Google Plus also has the Circles tool which makes it possible to put different people into different circles, and from there you can decide what content you want which circles to see.
Now, for the negative things regarding these social networking mediums: There is the fact that Facebook constantly make changes that their fans might not necessarily want. Take the timeline for example; it is not a Facebook favorite, yet by May 2012 everyone will have to have one. Another down side to Facebook is that even though they have top notch privacy settings, most of the applications on Facebook can access your personal information, make posts for you and send requests out to people that you might not actually want. For Google Plus, I find a downside with being forced to use your real name, it is personal information that some people might not want out for the whole world to see. In addition, Google Plus has an uncomfortable feel to it.
To compare the two to present date, it is obvious the Facebook is clearly the better social media platform. However, Google Plus is on the rise and with more additions to come Facebook may be in more trouble than they realize.