Why You Can’t Beat Zuckerberg: A Lesson from Google + Launch

Critical Mass is the amount of a given fissionable material necessary to sustain a chain reaction at a constant rate. An amount necessary or sufficient to have a significant effect or to achieve a result: a critical mass of public support.

Zuckerberg knows critical mass. Just as Google+ was launching Zuckergerg explained he was “launching something awesome.” Him simply saying he was revealing something awesome made media go nuts. After the announcement everyone was hinging on his every word. A brilliant, but relatively insignificant comment that honestly was designed to steal thunder from Google+ worked as well as it could have, because after the Google+ buzz everything was back to what Facebook was going to do. Word is Zuckerburg has something awesome. Was it that awesome? Not really, a decently cool video chat service with Skype (Mail Online). From a one sentence announcement he and facebook stayed in all the conversations that stole the Google+ rising cloud thunder, no pun intended.

This foresight stems from Zuckerberg’s seemingly omnipotent understanding of social media, demonstrated by what he calls the law of social sharing (Tech Crunch).

He’s a scientist, a pioneer of the social world, and says everything will be social, educational and informative. The day of promotional blasts, yelling at you to get your attention, will die like the dinosaurs and social is the speeding comet, ozone hole, and ice age. The traditional news dinosaurs? Oh. They are dead twice.

Google deserves credit though. With the massive Google Buzz failure, they’re learning how to release social sites. First Google+ is opened to the public and bloggers go nuts. They speculate and build the hype. Then it goes exclusive. Then…poof.underground beta. Everyone is feeling like a loser that didn’t get in. They’re saying to themselves, “I’m not an early adopter ahh noob stench all over me!”

When it resurfaces, it’ll be just like another release. While it’s underground the dust is clearing. Google is listening. What is everyone saying about plus? Who’s plussing, why, how, do they like it, and how do we amass another 10 million into this? They’re meeting with their community organizers. They have their ears to the railroad and are waiting for exactly when the train is coming. By the vibration and sound they’re finding out exactly what train it is, how much it weighs, what it’s carrying, and most importantly…they’re finding out exactly where it’s going.

But alas, at the end of the day, Zuckerberg sits atop his social throne and works his magic…and it almost always works.


4 thoughts on “Why You Can’t Beat Zuckerberg: A Lesson from Google + Launch

  1. felicaann says:

    I completely agree with you Travis. I think that Google+ was a mini fad and all the buzz is back to Facebook. Zuckerburg is a social media and business genius, literally. Thanks for this shout out to Mark, he is my hero! We will see what happens with plus but for now I see it as mute compared to Facebook. Also Facebook has already answered the privacy issues that most who use plus complain about.

  2. Using the word “fissionable” is great if you audience has an understanding of nuclear physics, so that they understand the metaphor. Otherwise, I would take a little more time explaining it and perhaps tell your readers that you are defining the word “fission”.

    When you say “Word is Zuckerburg has something awesome” it makes it sounds like now, when you were actually referring to the past. So you should have used “was” and “had” instead of “is” and “has” … because FB already launched the awesome something.

    I love the rising cloud pun. It can be taken as the general “cloud” or the more specific “iCloud”, which would actually bring Apple into this discuss … nice.

    I do question whether Mark is omnipotent in what social media needs or if he just happens to be guessing pretty well; with some exceptions like the shopping service that was supposed to compete with Groupon that is getting shut down.

    When talking about the “traditional news dinosaurs” I would interject the discussion of reputation and credibility. I think the news agencies will morph into places where the reputation and credibility lie, and they may not be big conglomerate organizations, but instead places where people with a dependable track record come together.

    “Noob stench”? Did you coin this? I like it. 🙂

    G+ won’t be resurfacing … it’ll be surfacing when it comes out of trial mode.

    Likewise, did Google fail with Buzz and succeed with G+ or do it just get unlucky with one and lucky with another? Worth discussing.

  3. Tanner Simmons says:

    I really enjoyed reading about your take on Zuckerberg’s scientific scheme. It is so true though. He knows what things makeup long term success and practicality opposed to flash in the pan ideas like Myspace.

  4. Jordan Shaw says:

    I like it, I really enjoyed how you got your own voice into it and didn’t write just another stuffy old paper. It sounded like you were having a lot of fun writing this. I do wonder if you place a bit too much faith in Marc though, a charismatic leader can only take a company so far, then you actually have to have a decent product. Facebook isn’t the most organized system, and I think it may be losing touch. Yes, Marc is a revolutionary, a hero-like figure in communication and invention history, but look at the past, I can name a dozen such inventors who’ve lost everything to someone with nothing more than an idea to make it just a little better. Is this google+? Just sayin’…

Intelligent sincerity below

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