Jul
11

Google+ won’t win.

It may ‘win’ for a year or two, but it won’t win in the long run — it isn’t the ‘Facebook Killer’ that everyone is heralding it to be.

When people say ‘Facebook Killer,’ they really mean ‘Next Big Thing.’ Most people don’t care about the ‘Killing Facebook’ part of it — they care about the next big innovation that will become the primary platform by which they connect with people across the globe for the next 5 to 7 years. It isn’t Google+.

You can’t kill Facebook by creating a slightly-improved version of Facebook. Why? Because no one wants a better Facebook. They may say they do, but they don’t. Steve Jobs (a master of innovation) famously says, “You can’t just ask your customers what they want, because they don’t know what they want.” In reality, they want something new entirely — something they haven’t even thought of yet.

Whoever can create an online platform that connects people in a completely-unexpected, simple-to-use, fully-integrated, and universally-accessible way will dominate the web for the next 5 to7 years. Barring serious improvements, it won’t be Facebook, Twitter, or Google+. When it does come around, you won’t even realize you need it — until you do.

Every industry has a Facebook. Unless it’s a necessity, don’t spend time creating better Facebooks. It’s not sustainable. You’ll never change the world by creating slightly better products than your competition. Develop a product that no one knows they need, then convince the world that they need it. Create an entire market that didn’t exist before, and force your future competitors to follow your lead.

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  • Travis Cochrum

    I like it. Good thinking as usual. People will probably end up primarily using one or the other to save effort and google+ could take a chunk of users but it is not going to suddenly be the only product on the market because it is the same product that is already there.

    • Anonymous

      Thanks, Travis – you’re dead on. Thanks for reading!

  • Johnny

    A big complaint about Facebook: their updates. They update and everything feels foreign again. I could see an exodus happening if Facebook doesn’t improve this. Average user may look at it and say, “if I am going to learn a new social network site, might as well try plus.” Perhaps.

    • Anonymous

      Thanks for reading, Johnny. Exactly! But that’s only going to last for a couple of years until the next big thing comes around. If you’re Google (and you’re going to spend 10 or 15 million dollars developing a new product), it seems like a waste to create something that you’re target market “might as well try.”

  • John Fox

    yooooo Ryan. this may sound dumb bubt did you write this or just repost it?

    • Anonymous

      Hey John – thanks for reading. Everything published on ReCorporate is entirely original, unless I or one of the other authors clearly quote something from another source. Why do you ask?

  • Dave Robinson

    I think Google+ will be a success, that does not mean it has to be as big as facebook. what google+ does is a bit different then what facebook does. lets not forget the goal of faceook “to take the experience of being in college and put it on the Internet” when i log onto facebook, the first thing i do is check out my “notifications” see who friend requested me, and when i get bored i profile surf, see what’s going on with people i have spent more time with on facebook then face to face. what google+ seems to be doing is making more a variety of different things. i can video chat with a group of friends, or one friend. i can read an artical and if i like it i can “+1” it. these are all things i can do with out google+. i don’t think google+ is just trying to mock facebook, i think they are trying to mock skype, twitter, 4square, flickr, and linked-in as well, and i think they can pull it off because, well its google. there is no way they can get as big as Facebook, but they can defiantly compete…

    steve denning and you have alot of the same things to say.

    • Anonymous

      Steve – great points. I agree with you almost entirely.

      I’m on Google+, and I’m the first to admit that there are alot of great things about it. My point, however, (as I mentioned in other comments as well) is that at some point in the next three years there will be a disruptive technology or product that will enter the Social Media space and be the “next big thing.” I don’t think Google+ is different enough from Facebook to be that “next big thing,” and if you’re a company that’s going to spend millions of dollars building a new product out, why not go for the jugular and try to be that disruptive product that turns everything on it’s head?

      Yes – several people have emailed me the Steve Denning article from a few weeks ago. It’s a fantastic plece, he just doesn’t go quite as far with his point as this post did.

  • Anonymous

    I don’t think it’s a Facebook killer, but there is a product doing social network entirely different.  Glassboard is putting privacy first.  Imagine that.  One of the creators and accomplished programmer Nick Bradbury posts on the new direction he believes we could or should go.  I really do like his approach.  Here’s his blog post:

    http://nick.typepad.com/blog/2011/09/privacy-is-important.html

    P.S. I am not associated with Glassboards but I really like the idea.  I hope it catches on.

  • http://www.joelle.de/ ekine

    It (the next big thing) could be the decentralised web. Have one online account with the provider of your choice and connect to any profile on any provider without signing up for other accounts. Just let the servers connect to each other. >  joindiaspora 😉

    joe ekine