Who uses Google+?
In popular marketing mythology Google+ is as dead as the proverbial dodo. However, it really does depend how you view it because while claims of percentages of users who are actually active is pretty low compared with other platforms (ranging from one to 9 percent depending on who you ask, and when), that’s still 22-200 million people, so it’s hardly insignificant.
At the beginning the network was, like most of the others, strictly invite only so there were a lot of early adopters (like me) and tech nerds (er, yes) and IT geeks on the platform. Many of them created accounts that then went fallow, which is why the active users figure is apparently so low.
So who is actively using Google+?
• 74% of users are male
• 26% of users are female
• 55% of users are from the US
• 18% of users are from India
• 6% of users are from Brazil
• 5% of users are from the UK
• 4% of users are from Canada
But that’s just to scratch the surface because to be honest Google+ is a little different to Facebook or Twitter, or even Pinterest, in so far it’s about your online contacts, whom you have had conversations with, whom is in your digital ‘circles’. Consequently it starts from the premise of what interests you the most and then develops that, which is why passionate online people, from food bloggers to tech gurus, feel right at home here.
So if you are looking for Generation C, of whatever age, this is your go-to platform.
Why use Google+?
The photo quality is astounding. Google+ is designed to allow anyone to upload high-resolution photos without interfering with the quality of the image, and it shows. It also lets you edit comprehensively and upload good video, something that can’t be said of most of the competition, although the Facebook/Instagram babes have made great strides forward in the last year.
Then there’s hangouts, which is like Messenger or Whatsapp on steroids, and far superior to Skype for office/client chats and meets (and as a company with staff who mainly work remotely, we thoroughly recommend).
Finally, there’s the SEO goodness. What can I say? It’s a Google platform. They may have discontinued the Author facility, but the SEO goodness is still very much present AND IT WORKS.
Is it for you and your business?
Well, that depends on whether the people who use it are the people you want to connect to. For finding and connecting with a specific audience, yes, especially if you are looking for predominantly male American audience, probably of the tech and/or creative mindset, yes and yes again. Best to check out groups in your niche and see how active they are.
Also, if you want to improve your own personal brand search ranking or the SEO to your website, then yes, it’s a good call. Just remember to add a link and use keywords/hashtags, be consistent in what and how often you post (weekly is better than monthly, but monthly is better than five a day for five days and then nothing for a year), join in (groups, chats etc), and be friendly – but then I would say that about any social network! 😉
Good luck, and let me know if you have any other insights to add in the comments.