Why Facebook Still Matters - 93% of Active Facebook Users Say Facebook Is Their Favorite Social Networking Site

The early adopters at Google+ seem to be in love. The Google+ project is well designed, fast, and feature-rich. It is attracting an intelligent, tech-savvy, adult audience. It is generating more real engagement and conversation than most online users have ever experienced before. Tech stars like Kevin Rose and Bill Gross are abandoning their blogs and going "all in" to Google+.

Google+ combines some of the most valuable aspects of Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn in one product. I've been tracking the growth rates and total membership of Google, which I have estimated passed 10 million users today. This is one of the most exciting product launches in history.

But remember that only a small percentage of the population are early adopters. Not everyone is unhappy with Facebook. Facebook has added hundreds of million of "late-comers" to their social network in the past 2 years who are obviously enjoying their experience there because most of them are logging in multiple times a day.

Survey data collected in the past 24 hours by our team at FamilyLink.com (a Facebook app developer with about 70 million current installs and fans) suggests that the vast majority of active Facebook users are happy where they are. As hard as it is to believe, most Facebook users have not even heard of Google+ yet.

We have 390 complete survey responses so far. (We had more than 1,000 clicks but only about 1/3 of the people who clicked filled out the complete survey.)

52% of Facebook users haven't heard of Google+
16% are waiting for an invitation to Google+
13% have heard of Google+ but don't care to try it
10% have no opinion
9% of respondents have signed up for Google+ already

Favorite Social Networking Site

When asked what their favorite social networking site or tool is, here are the responses:

93% Facebook
3% Google+
2% Twitter
2% Other
1% LinkedIn

76% of the respondents also said they use Facebook multiple times a day (which is probably why they saw our survey in the first place, while 21% use it daily and only 4% use it less than that.)

With all the attention focused on the growth of Google+, everyone should balance their perspective by looking for data about Google+ and companies that may be impacted by it: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. Some of us will be making company bets in the next few months--do we build apps for Facebook, Google+, or both?

During the coming months, millions of companies will decide how much time to invest in their Facebook fan page and their Google+ Company Profile page. Who knows what tools are coming down the pike from both companies?

And thousands of entrepreneurs and developers will make decisions about whether to build on Facebook's Platform or Google+'s API or both. In order to make the right decision, all of us need data -- data about the growth of each service, knowledge of the features and tools they are releasing, and an understanding of their Platform and API policies.

That is why I'm collecting all this data - to help my company and other developers make the best possible decision. I intend to run this survey regularly to see how public awareness of Google+ increases and how consumer sentiments shift. Four years ago I bet my company on Facebook, back when it just had 24 million users and first announced its Facebook Platform. That was a great bet for the first 2 1/2 years, but then the policies changed and our company almost disappeared.

We want to make our next company bet with eyes wide open.

Chris Turitzen, a leading social app developer, put it best: "Ever since Google+ arrived, I’ve had a relieved and hopeful feeling about being a social app developer..." He went on to explain that he will switch to the platform that gives developers the greatest viral distribution. That's one of the main things we are looking for as well.

His entire post is here: http://momentusmedia.com/blog/?p=817
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