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Old 11th December 2006, 01:10 PM   #1
thejenn
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Default Is Social Bookmarking The Next Big Thing?

Authored by: Jennifer Laycock

Full Text: http://www.searchengineguide.com/laycock/008967.html

A Snippet:

Social Bookmarking is a hot topic in the online marketing world right now. That's a good thing, because there's quite a bit to be learned from social bookmarking...namely, that people tend to gather together in groups to share the things that interests them. The problem is that just because something works for one site, it's not guarenteed to work for ALL sites.

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Old 11th December 2006, 02:20 PM   #2
codeplacidly
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Default this reminds me

of a marketing meeting I had the privilege (?) of attending recently, where I was informed that our goal was to be top in google for a particular search term.

No notion of what this was going to give us in terms of traffic or sales, there wasn't an end to end strategy in place at all. Just a short term achievement that wouldn't really do us any good at all. Ppl are so amazingly good at getting hold of the wrong end of the stick though, aren't they?

Jax

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Old 11th December 2006, 05:00 PM   #3
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I believe you're quite correct when you point out the short comings of links from social bookmarking sites. If you're not getting your targeted market, you're pretty much just burning up bandwidth. There is NO silver bullet - referrals do NOT automatically translate into paying customers and money in the bank!

About a year ago Seth Godin linked to me from his blog. Not social bookmarking, but amatuer that I was, I assumed a link from a top ranking blog would lead to something. It didn't. I got a large number of referrals sure, but none of them had any interest in my product. I may have puffed out my chest for a day or two, but it did nothing for the bottom line.

Are you familiar with www DOT stumbleupon DOT com ? (not allowed to post a direct link - silly, stupid, 10 post rule... Aren't moderators supposed to deal with spam?)

I found Stumbleupon six months ago after checking out my web-site stats. I design a software product aimed at creative writers, and noticed a huge spike in referrals from an unknown site one day. At first I assumed it was yet another Warez site hawking cracked versions of my software, but closer investigation led somewhere more interesting.

Stumbleupon is social bookmarking with a difference, and seems to not be as 'techie' as Digg and Reddit. When people sign up they choose what sort of sites they are interested in (writing being the keyword for my web-site), and when they hit the stumble button they land on random sites already marked by users as noteworthy, in a similar manner to Digg. There are millions of users with a Stumbleupon toolbar installed in their IE or Firefox browsers.

This one site has led to a much larger (TARGETTED) referral base than any blog or social bookmark link to my product in the last 18 months. Even 6 months later, I still get regular spikes in activity from Stumbleupon, which lead to downloads of my product and sales.

Definitely worth a look, and far more relevant than 'blind' referrals from Digg.

P.S. - Jennifer - you really should allow comments on your blog posts. Get with the program girl!


Last edited by EyesOpen; 11th December 2006 at 05:20 PM.
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Old 11th December 2006, 05:16 PM   #4
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Like with anything else, it's good for some, bad for others. However, I would note to you would be Digg haters: There are other areas to do social networking in... Plenty. And some will do your site better than others...

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Old 11th December 2006, 10:32 PM   #5
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I don't want to steer this thread off topic but a couple of points were made that I want to answer to help others understand why we do certain things...

Quote:
Originally Posted by EyesOpen View Post
(not allowed to post a direct link - silly, stupid, 10 post rule...
Actually, it's a rule that has cut down spam tremendously because it stops the majority of drive-by spammers.

Quote:
Aren't moderators supposed to deal with spam?)
Yes, which is why we implement automated solutions whenever possible. This reduces spam and frees up moderators to answer questions instead of spending so much time hunting down spam.

Quote:
P.S. - Jennifer - you really should allow comments on your blog posts. Get with the program girl!
Instead of comments on each blog post/article we chose instead to direct people to the forum to engage in conversations about the posts/articles.

Ok, back to the topic at hand...

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Old 12th December 2006, 04:24 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert View Post
Instead of comments on each blog post/article we chose instead to direct people to the forum to engage in conversations about the posts/articles.
That's interesting in theory, but how does it fare in practice?

As the subject is social bookmarking sites, say I had Dugg or posted a link on Reddit to the article in question. If it had been viewed favourably and made the front page, Jennifer's piece would probably have been read by 20,000 + new readers, many of whom may have posted a comment and gotten involved in a dialog over the post if that were possible. Now, how many of these people, when faced with the added steps of going to a forum and joining this new forum they probably have no real interest in, would have done so simply to post a single comment?

Almost none I would say. I like Jennifer's work and read each new piece, but as you can see from my user info, rarely if ever post comments here. That's because I find the forum a step removed from the work in question. I would never link to one of Jennifer's articles, in the same way that I never link to news articles where the site puts an ad screen in your way before the content can be viewed (NYT, and worst of all Salon spring to mind). If the interaction and the dialog are a step removed from the content, you lose many people who want to interact and have a dialog. It may add a SMALL number of new accounts to this forum, but is that the only purpose of writing the pieces?

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Old 12th December 2006, 06:49 AM   #7
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I'm kind of fascinated by the whole social bookmarking phenom but in some ways it seems to be a reversion back to "rankings are everything". Only in this case, it's not rankings but links. Links are great an all, but whatever happened to links that drive quality referrals, not just traffic.

Digg, et. al. are great for informational sites where conversions are not the end result, but businesses putting stock in that I think are going to come up disappointed. While links help with the rankings, the links themselves (or the rankings for that matter) are not the goal. Sales and conversions are.

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Old 12th December 2006, 08:44 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EyesOpen View Post
That's interesting in theory, but how does it fare in practice?
We've done it both ways so I can tell you from experience it works better this way for our sites. Access to the stats is a wonderful thing.

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Old 20th December 2006, 12:51 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by St0n3y View Post
I'm kind of fascinated by the whole social bookmarking phenom but in some ways it seems to be a reversion back to "rankings are everything". Only in this case, it's not rankings but links. Links are great an all, but whatever happened to links that drive quality referrals, not just traffic.

Digg, et. al. are great for informational sites where conversions are not the end result, but businesses putting stock in that I think are going to come up disappointed. While links help with the rankings, the links themselves (or the rankings for that matter) are not the goal. Sales and conversions are.
true. but in the case of some sites, linking is one of the top short-term goals. It's also one way to generating sales and conversions, I think.

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Old 20th December 2006, 02:32 PM   #10
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While I agree that Stumble! is a great service, I'd disagree that it's any less techie than digg etc. Even though it does include sites that are not tech based (btw, so does digg) very few people who aren't in the tech community have actually 'stumbled upon' the service at all.

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