Tag Archives: Blog

Social media presence is not what your product needs


Today everyone blogs and we expect everyone to have their own blog, Twitter account, LinkedIn profile etc. Being present on as many services as we can. We can then measure measure engagement levels with one of the many different approaches (number of followers, sales, replies or even Klout rank).

What often don’t see is companies taking a deliberate decision not to be present on every social media fad, but instead decide to focus on a few communication channels and spend the rest of their resources on their actual product.

The one company that does this beautifully is twidroid. They make a deliberate stance that they don’t do tech support over Twitter and that you should use email. Their message is simple and it helps drive customer to the right medium.

We can take this a step further and take a look at different ways some of social media tools can be used:

Facebook Page
Is our audience on Facebook at all? Is this a replacement of Newsletter or do we expect to do tech support and discussions here? Do we just count number of fans so we have more than competition?

Twitter account
Do we plan to become a leader and Tweet  about our industry or do we just push announcement every once in a while. Is this account to do tech support over? Do we want followers or engagement? How personal is the voice of the account?

Do we position ourselves as progressive thinking company that regularly writes in-depth editorials or do we push product announcements and speaking gigs. What would be most useful for our business goals (hyping up vs. consumer focused)?

LinkedIn and everything else
While we all love new social networks the only real question is – do we actually reach anyone on that platform?

Do you know why your social media presence is structured like it is? Or is it legacy setup already?

Personal branding, social media and pretty pictures

In spirit of eating my own dog food, I’m publishing the presentation that I’m giving tomoorow at my old faculty to undergrad class about things I live and breath – twitter, social media and branding. Probably not much for veterans reading this blog but I was surprised how many good case studies I could do from your blogs. Kudos to @anjarenko, @anejmehadzic and @jernej 🙂

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Find of the day: Quince: A UX Patterns Explorer

Being subscribed to a million of different obscure mailing lists and blogs has some advantages. Every once in a while you grab announcement of a rare gem early. Today I receivend an email about Quince – A UX Patterns Explorer by Infragistics.

It’s a visual representation of some of interface patterns used in interface design field. Idea behind these patterns is that if we manage to standardize on certain ways of doing things, then the overall usability and user experience of your interface will benefit from it.

So the big problem is – how do I learn patterns? The usual way in * design profession is that you observe the world around you, take note of remarkable work of others and observe the problems of your users to iterate to a solution.

The other approach is to dive into one of these pattern sites, see how others solved similar presentation/navigation/input/ .. problem and get inspiration from it. Quince is one of such solutions.

Quince browser
Quince browser

It has a wide collection of different patterns together with examples, rational and screen shots. All neatly organizable and browsable. It also allows community to add and vote for their own so it has potential to grow with time.

The bad? It’s done in Silverlight and has a bit confusing User Interface. But it seems to work nicely on my Mac for now and I plan to evaluate it in my future interface design.

Quince patterns
Quince patterns

And for the ones wondering – Quince is a very nice flower of Asian origin:

Quince flower on bush
Image by Martin LaBar via Flickr
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Links are currency of the web

There are many answers to the question: why do you blog?, but at the end of the day, the real answer is just one: to get attention. As much as we give greater meaning to our writings, it’s just attention whoring for a greater cause or to sell our persona a bit better.

Persona literally means
Image via Wikipedia

The natural question to this is then – what can I do to get most attention and survive in this environment? To which answer is also obvious, but often overlooked and needs to be repeated as many times as possible: link, link and link!

The web is built on hyperlinks. That’s how you navigate around, it’s the way Google knows how much is your page worth and the way Technorati calculates your authoritativeness. With an outgoing link, you take a part of your own hard earned authority via incoming links and use it to vote for someone else. Basically the same principle that’s used in academia where authors cite each other from which their ranking gets calculated.

Taking all this in account, we can see that links are essentially a currency of the web, something that we use to award someone’s good idea (by linking to it) and of course others pay us for our insights in a form of incoming links.

With this in mind, we can extend this analogy even further, to Whuffie, reputation based currency from Doctorow’s Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom. As algorithms get smarter in recognizing paid links and there will be increasingly less value for them in gambling Google, because of various URL shortening services of micro-blogs and similar, we’ll be able to pretty accurately calculate the real worth of someone’s online persona.

12 grados al sol. No hay apetentes.
Image by berpala via Flickr

Getting some sort of metric of online value of person is of course great, because then we can start building our brands and business with people that have reputation in their field on average of 30 incoming links per weeks. It’s almost impossible to fake this measure and should provide a good foundation for different social media workers and their net worth.

What do you think about linking? Would you agree to get payed and valued based on number of incoming links to your personal blog?

Linking out to @hadhad for reminding me to link every time I see him.

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