Is there a smarter way for Google+ to choose "Suggested Users" to recommend?
The Google+ Suggested Users List is live here: https://plus.google.com/getstarted/follow
Here is how Google+ is generating it: https://plus.google.com/113116318008017777871/posts/LoPmpdCt3DT
It looks like they have a number of smart ideas here (that go beyond merely adding people who are already popular on Twitter, according to +Bradley Horowitz
). However, the list I am presently seeing does not yet surface those ideas - it's a pretty basic list, and doesn't yet contain even the people I would have expected in the various categories.
How could this be improved so that it isn't yet another "popularity contest" or "echo chamber" all over again (like the Twitter Suggested Users list...).
Below I've added some suggestions for how Google+ could leverage the Suggested Users list to make G+ more novel and interesting.
The key is to identify new voices who are not yet "discovered" on other networks and get them audience.
This would build those people up to have larger audiences on G+ than they probably have on Twitter. It would also mean that G+ users would follow them and start getting novel information from new voices that they might not be following on Twitter already. In other words, it makes G+ more unique, less redundant, and more interesting.
If a new wave of interesting people became stars in Google+, instead of just the same popular Twitter people getting even more popular, they would use Google+ to reach their followers here. This would turn G+ into their network of choice.
It's a clever tactical move to get more traction in Google+ from the next level of people -- let's call them the B-list and the C-list instead of just the standard A-list.
What would such an algorithm be? How do you discover new, novel people to follow in Google+ who are not already huge celebrities on the Web?
I'm interested to hear your ideas, and the Google+ team (who I am in touch with) is also interested. So please comment here. Perhaps this could lead to something new.
Here are some of my own ideas:
1. Klout Integration
G+ should integrate with Klout and suggest influencers to follow in each Klout topic area. Influencers should have a minimum score of 50 or 60 to be suggested. Targeted suggestions could be made to people who are interested in topic x to the top Klout influencers for topic x. (Disclosure: I'm a Klout investor)
2. Identifying G+ Influencers
G+ should look for people who are very active & influential on G+ and reward them by suggesting them. These would not merely be people who post a lot, it would be people who get a lot of comments and whose posts are re-shared a lot. In addition to the big celebs, there are probably several bands of people who are not famous yet who are getting this kind of traction in G+ and are worth promoting.
3. Nomination System
Why not add a way for people to vote for people to be added to the Suggested Users list. On any person's profile, or on their posts, you can "Nominate them " for the suggested users list. If someone gets enough nominations they get on the list.
4. Sections in the List
The suggested users list should have four sections:
(a) Popular Voices (the standard big celebs and Twitter-celebs)
(b) Emerging Voices (people gaining traction and influence in G+ who are not yet famous here)
(c) Influencers by Topic (people with Klout scores > 60, by topic)
(d) Recommended for You (personalized suggestions for influencers you might find interesting)
5. One Line Bios
Provide at least some biographical info for each person in the list under their name - such as their one-line bio. For example, it would be good, in the "News" category, to know what publication each journalist writes for under their name.
Please add your own suggestions!