Every week (sometimes daily) a new Social Network pops up on my radar. It’s usually because I was sent multiple invites to join and not because I saw it in the news. These networks have the right idea in making it easy to find and invite all your other friends on other networks.
Over the holiday weekend I had a little downtime and started playing with a few of the new ones. I want to see how they work, what they do with your data and MOST importantly, what value they add for me. Here’s my take on three of the newest and what they should change – what good is pointing out the wrong if you don’t suggest the right
Let me explain what I mean by value. I don’t need a new profile, I don’t need new links back to my site and I don’t need a new site that requires and uses my time and energy – unless… Unless my participation in that site creates new contacts, conversations, and possibly relationships. To me, that’s VALUE.
First on my list was Scoville. A while back I joined, added items to my TopTuesday to see what would happen and then made sure they were also shared and tweeted. The result was disappointing at best. I saw nothing that could prompt a person to reach out and connect with me or the places I was sharing. Go ahead, pick any random tweet from here https://twitter.com/#!/search/%23toptuesday and see what you can connect with. meh? meh!
But Scoville also added Likeboxes – small collections of similar checkins – like my. Do you see any value in that? meh.
Suggestion for Scoville: Make the results (TopTuesday) viral and connectable. If I find a local person sharing good venues, give me an easy way to connect to that person and add the venue to my Foursquare todo list, please. Can we also have a way to discus each venue (publically)? Can you pull in the tips for the venues I include from Foursquare?
Next up, Referral Key. While Scoville is more about fun and games – Referral Key cuts right to the point. Connect with people, refer others to them and they’ll pay you CASH! Did that get your attention?
I completed my profile and started accepting invitation requests. Truth be told, looking at many of those I’m now connected with, these people don’t know anything about me, about what I do, or how good (or bad) I am at it. If they were to refer me to someone (hopefully to build a facebook app) I would hope they would be a former client of mine. They are not. Are they after the super hefty reward I placed for a referral (a measly $5)? That means they reached out to connect to me because they were looking at me referring people to them. You can guess that might not happen as I have no prior dealings with them. So far, Referral Key is a solid “meh”.
Suggestion for Referral Key: Don’t do away with the reward – It’s cool and I get that. But you need something more about the peeps I might want to refer to other than their small profile. Maybe pull in their Linkedin Recommendations? Speaking of SocNets – why not include and connect all the others? Here’s my profile: https://www.referralkey.com/MikeMueller – I get one link? Why not all my other social media accounts? No twitter, No Facebook? No Linkedin?
EmpireAvenue was something I blocked early when it first came out but a few of my friends kept pushing me to check it out. So, reluctantly I created a profile and instantly people started buying and selling me!
Yes, that felt more than a little slimy but I got over it. My stock price rises and falls with the engagement I have on connected social media sites so there’s also a “feel good” aspect as well. Remember: points, badges, achievements and even peppers (that’s you scoville!) are built into sites to make you feel good about your ignoring your real family so that you feel better spending even more hours on the game.
I’m not going to be swayed by share prices or badges. The money is monopoly money and I can’t buy real guns or butter with it. They gave me a position (also virtual) within the index. It moves up or down in respect to the others within that index. Will becoming a CEO of an index start a new conversation?
I was also bummed when I looked for an index that fit my interests and had to chose between Technology or Social Media – Why isn’t there a Facebook? Really? I hear it’s kind of a big deal.
I haven’t formulated an official opinion on Empire yet. Let’s say the jury is still out. For sure, I see no value in building virtual wealth so I’m looking for ways to virtually meet new people and connect with them. That’s my game plan until they introduce options trading then I’ll amuse myself by buying puts, calls, straddles and collars(totally kidding – but WOW would that be a total time suck, eh?).
Suggestion for EmpireAvenue: I haven’t had much of a chance to formulate much yet but seriously – is there some reason you can’t break Facebook out as an industry?
Are you on any of these three sites? Am I missing something? Got a hint or a clue you can pass along? I’d love to hear it.
- Scoville site provides customized Foursquare recommendations (outnfront.wordpress.com)
- Scoville – Remember, Share and Discover Places You Love (laughingsquid.com)
He's an avid hockey fan, rides a mountain bike, sometimes rides a road bike, has a few motorcycles (he had a really fast one, bought a cool orange one, rode a really slow one, and wants a really small one). If that isn't enough, he makes cheese and sourdough bread, loves strong beer and good red wine, and poorly plays the Mandolin.