Social Circles aren’t invented by Google – but they did capitalize

The new Google+ is on the rise. 20 million users already in what seems an overnight success in social media. A new social media platform to add to Facebook, Linkedin, and Twitter, assuming you are on one or more, not to mention the social interactions of Yelp, FourSquare, and so on.

What is Google+? Check out the web for more info, but its another social medium that has some of the same interactions as the others, but with a slight difference – you can separate your interactions by group – work ppl in one, family in another, buddies in a third, fantasy football contacts in a fourth, students in another, and so on. This allows you to think about what you are going to share or say, and then designate who you are going to share it with.

This way you can use a single platform to show how excited you are about your recent fantasy football acquisition without letting your boss know about it. Or share a great article on leadership practices without having your football buddies say “what..?”

Did Google+ invent this separation? NO. But a big pat on the back for creating a platform to leverage that.

Its not an unusual practice to use LinkedIn for professional, Facebook for personal, and Twitter for X. In fact, I have been doing that for some time, and I have been teaching that platform to students at NYU since MySpace was an actual space 🙂 The separation of your brand is critical to future jobs, your career, and even how people relate to you. To illustrate the point, I rarely post professional stuff on my personal FB page – I leave that to the Aspen Advisors FB fan page.

I do find it odd how I know things about people who I interface with professionally on FB. I know their children’s names, when they have babies, what their backyard looks like, and what they had for dinner. On LinkedIn, outside of the occasional person who wraps FourSquare or Twitter to their LI account, I don’t know ANY of that stuff.

And maybe that is what Google+ will really offer – an easy and clear way to separate the different facets of “your brand”. It will be interesting to see how Google+ allows you to integrate with other social media, and how people who have yet to break into social media will use the tool.

But the NYU professor’s lesson has been personified and aggregated (probably no thanks to me btw) – separate your circles, be deliberate in how you message to select audiences, and intake messaging by a specific mindset so you can process more effectively.

As for Google+, I declined my initial invitation. I am sure I will get another. I am so used to separating already 🙂 But if someone asked me and they were just getting started, I probably would tell them to check it out if they were invited.

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