To Google+ or Not To Google+ – The Next Step in Networking


Any of you following me on my Facebook profile will know that I have been experimenting with Google+ the past week or two. Like all new social networks, it takes time to drill out the bugs and make any new service smooth and efficient. Google+ has already achieved that with their basic interface and the circle and hangout facilities look very promising from the perspective of authors and musicians. What is holding Google + back is the fact that the network remains invitation only and the integration with Facebook is pretty basic at the moment. Crucially, I have just managed in the last few days to sync Google+ with my Facebook and Twitter feeds. That’s an important step forward for me and for The Independent Publishing Magazine.

About a year ago I began to integrate Facebook more with this site, allowing users to sign in here and comment using their Facebook account, while still maintaining all the facilities offered under Google’s products – Google Reader, Blogger, and Buzz, which I did use for a short time. Most followers here will know (or should now know) that a year ago I stopped posting daily news items to the pages of The Independent Publishing Magazine, and I began using my Facebook profile for that purpose. The site here became specific for service reviews, articles and longer discussion. So anyone wondering why I don’t post here as much as I used to do, (sometimes up to 6 to 8 posts a day), need to get yourselves on over to my Facebook profile for your daily dose of up to date news.
I am impressed so far with what I have experienced on Google+, and although at an early development stage, Google+ offers something Facebook has not been able to offer – the ability for me to be able to connect with authors, publishers and readers by their status and interest. Now, what do I mean by that?
Up until now, when I chose to impart information to my fan base/followers; any information had to be blasted out to all in the hope that it reached the right person. My readers were not hung up on how I published a book, or what was the best service to use for an author considering independent publishing paths – they just wanted to read my books. Likewise, followers of the site and Facebook profile switched off when I posted and discussed topics on writing or more personal issues on my books. A couple of months ago, I created a dedicated author site for my readers, and decided that the Independent Publishing Magazine should just be about that – the world of publishing.
So, where is the future?
Followers of this site will notice no changes – you have all been magnificent in your support of The Independent Publishing Magazine over the past four years. Many of you joined me on Facebook when I shifted the daily news stuff over there two years ago – and nothing is going to change about that. Facebook friends will notice the news feeds will emanate from Google+ more and more as a source. But what I would say my Facebook followers should consider – if they have set up a Google+ account – is to follow me over there, because that will allow me to more accurately understand fellow authors, publishers, media professionals and readers. I will be better able to tailor my connections with you. I am hoping for a far better connection within Google’s circles and hangouts.
The age-old problem using Facebook to promote and connect is throwing the tin of paint at the proverbial barn door. Some of it will hit and make a connection – some of it won’t.
This is also all new ground for me, so, for the moment, I will leave you with the above thoughts.
Thank you for all your support and comments.
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