Remember Google Buzz?  Going to revolutionize email, update our wardrobes and become the go to app of the New Millennium?  Well, if you don’t remember just Google it.

In any case The battle of claiming the top spot in global social networking scene has taken a yet another twist with the arrival of Google Plus a few weeks ago.  This newest entry into the social networking grid is being projected as the biggest threat yet to the existing behemoth – Facebook. It will be interesting to see how Google Plus rolls out in the coming few months.

Here’s a quick look at the plus and minuses of Google Plus and how they might impact the Hospitality Industry:

The Upside

Google Plus has plenty of features that give it a definite edge over arch-rival Facebook. For example – Google Plus has Circles – users can add their friends to their groups and get updated in real time.  Google+ also offers the ability to use applications such as Google Docs and calendar with its circles. It also features applications like ‘Hangouts’, a unique video chat feature that allows users to initiate group video chat with friends and even watch Youtube videos together.  This will make sharing dining experiences and tips even more interactive and immediate.   ‘Huddle’ is another feature of Google Plus, a group messaging app that can be integrated into both Android OS and iPhones, which will make an immediate impact on GPS marketing.  There is also the option to instantly upload videos and pictures with one touch of the Google Plus button.

The Downside

One of the most virally addictive aspects of Facebook is the endless number of apps and social games that members play with each other.  As of now there is virtually nothing on Google Plus like this so it has to grow based solely on the functionality of the features it offers.  The most ironic drawback to Google Plus is the fact that you can’t search for people nearly as easily as you can on Facebook.

The Skinny

Google Plus has the potential to be a player on the social media scene – but in terms of delegating limited resources to manage your social media profile I’d say take a wait and see attitude.  While this could turn out to be a challenge to the virtual hegemony of Facebook, just remember Orkut – if you don’t just Google it.