Google's new social network, Google+, could either be "the future of Google's long-term revenue and profit growth," or yet another addition to the scrap heap of discarded Facebook competitors, says Tom Anderson, the founder and former president of MySpace, in TechCrunch. As the Google+ team tries to steer the new service onto that brighter path, Anderson draws on his mistakes at his once-dominant social network to offer some free advice, including exhortations to hire better product visionaries and take privacy seriously. Here, an excerpt:
Start seriously courting the journalists, tastemakers, and celebrities that are using and/or pontificating about G+. This doesn't mean Google should ignore "regular" user feedback... It just means they should have a real, personal relationship with [that triumvirate]...
I don't want to say people are "sheep," but if the general Internet population believes G+ is happening and here to stay, then they'll commit the time to try it out. Popular opinion is the biggest "filter" for most people — they don't have to try something if they've already been told it's not cool. Popular opinion is the ultimate "social search," if you will. This doesn't just apply to user counts (G+ hits 20 million!), of course. Popular opinion will shape every aspect of people's G+ perception.
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