In June 2011, Google launched a platform that changed the social media landscape as we knew it. For the first time, a real challenger to Facebook had emerged - Google+.
Google+ is a social network and recommendation engine that borrows some of its core elements from both Facebook and Twitter. Like Facebook, users are able post rich content and detailed status updates to their profile and have this content show up in other user's newsfeeds. Unlike Facebook however (and similar to Twitter), Google+ users are able to follow anybody that they want to without requiring their target to accept a 'friend request'.
However, the really unique feature of Google+ is 'Circles.'
Circles allow users to create custom groups of people that they would either like to receive updates from or send updates to. Even though Facebook and Twitter have both introduced 'lists' which are somewhat similar, circles are by far the most robust and customisable social media audience segmentation tool available out of all the social media platforms.
From a business point of view, the ways you can use circles are only limited by your own creativity! Send exclusive updates and insights to just your clients, share cat photos with just your family or even share news to all of your circles AND to their extended circles.
But there's so much more to the platform than just circles. Check out this video from +Martin Shervinton to get a quick overview if you've never used or seen Google+ before: