A Tale of Two Kingdoms (or: Why Content Creators Shouldn’t Ignore Google Plus)

Those of us who create content (for a business or for our own pleasure) want to make sure it’s read, watched, or listened to. We also want people to find it. Being found on Google depends a lot on our social activity and, especially, Google Plus.
a view from the ground by darwin Bell, on Flickr
a view from the ground by darwin Bell, on Flickr

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…” Just kidding!

In the competing kingdoms in the world of the internet, social media platforms are springing up like mushrooms in a dark and damp forest. Who will save ye fair maiden? Who will slay the dreaded dragon?

Seriously, the resentment toward the Biggest of the Land from its serfs is directed toward Lord Facebook. We love it for convenience (friends and family, looking at photos, secret groups, login key) but we hate its grandiosity, its advertising, and its intelligence. Like a Lord in the age of Robin Hood, we are served by the Master but we are not free.

There is another kingdom that we’ve all scoffed at and, since the wave debacle, we have lost our faith in. He is one of the most lovable and noble big brothers of them all — Google.

Wait. I may have taken this analogy too far.

But seriously, folks.

Those of us who create content (for a business or for our own pleasure) want to make sure it’s read, watched, or listened to. We also want people to find it. Being found on Google depends a lot on our social activity and, especially, Google Plus.

Facebook or Twitter: Image Creative Commons Showing The Ropes by Pete, on Flickr

Do I want Facebook or Twitter for my Business?

What’s better for my business: Facebook or Twitter? How do I decide? Here are some factors to consider.

It’s a tug of war of sorts.

Facebook copies Twitter. Twitter copies Facebook. This goes on and on. Call it competition, tug of war, or innovation. Regardless, it’s good for the consumer.

Who has the bigger audience? Who has the most spam? Who’s trying to pry into your personal details?

So, I’m a business, which should I use?

I’m always amazed at this question. Why not both?

But if you really have to choose, ask yourself this:

  • What do you want to achieve?
  • Who do you want to reach?
  • Do you want to build up one and then the other?
  • Can you devote the time to doing them both simultaneously?
*Disclaimer 1: Twitter and Facebook could change any of what I’m about to point out at any time. This post was written on August 19, 2014.
*Disclaimer 2: It’s hard for me to be objective. Everyone who knows me knows I favor Twitter and my own numbers support that. This is my best effort to present objective pros and cons.

Below I compare Twitter and Facebook by feature. I apologize for the length, but every business has different needs, people who will be using the platform, and how (mobile or desktop) they will use it. You’ll need to consider them all to choose.

First Things First

Facebook and Twitter have entirely different cultures and different rules, protocols, or expectations.

Respect each platform for its own benefits, audience, and culture. I beg you not to connect the two so that you Tweet to Facebook or Tweet from Facebook. Just because something is easy, doesn’t mean it’s good.

You will be judged for being lazy, disregarding either audience, and people will wonder if you’ll ever respond. (Ya, I said it.)

Read: “Social Media: Different Platform, Different Language” by Carol Stephen

Audience Size

According to Facebook, they have “829 million daily active users on average in June 2014.” That’ too large of an audience to ignore this platform. A lot of people have recently said it’s not worth posting on Facebook anymore. I disagree.

Twitter has 271 million active users.

They both have massive, growing audiences. This won’t change. They haven’t jumped the shark or lost out like Myspace.