Google Plus just added the pages feature and companies worldwide are eager to use it. Twitter added the ‘action’-feature, which is a kind of Twitter timeline. With these adjustments the similarity race between the three leading social media players has entered another stage.
How do marketers decide what to use? They better don’t. Twitter is very small compared to Facebook and its penetration differs widely from country to country. Google+ has just started, is the smallest player so far, but Google as a platform has a much bigger user base than even Facebook. And you never know where your target group or parts of it communicate.
Being a marketer you better have a Facebook page, build a Google+ page and you want to be present on Twitter. And if you know of any other target group agglomerations – be it on Foursquare, or in one of the numerous communities and forums – then your brand better has a presence there too.
That does not sound very strategic. But it is not a matter of strategy. You need a strategy, but whatever your strategy is, you also need to establish online presences that have a chance to collect followership. So plant your seeds into all platforms and check what works.
Unfortunately, this means to play along with the competitive product developments of today’s internet companies. But chances are that these adjustments will lead to a fragmentation of usage and we will enter the next stage of social media development (and hopefully find a better word for it). One such development could be the consolidation of social media audiences. Another possibility could be the tiring of users to constantly update and read updates. Or the platforms could take to more aggressive feature battles that are not to the benefit of users.