Thursday, April 2, 2009

Your post crashed my site: A look at the contributors / inhibitors of the tone and scale of social buzz

Oh, awesome, a new service that checks all social sites to see if my name is taken. Oh, wait, this link on Mashable leads me to a totally broken site... let me try to type it in... hmm same result. Oh, what's this? An analysis of the new search features on everyone's Twitter homepage! AWESOME!

Ahh, the smell of social media buzz in the morning. You know what I'm talking about... that fast paced, RSS-fed, click-frenzy-to-the-next-shiny-social-tool laden search everyone does first thing they turn on their computer screen to see what's cool enough to Tweet this morning.

I've seen it all too much... A Technoarti Top 100 blog posts a story on a brand new startup introducing a neat and unique social media tool to their community and brings the company's servers to their knees. While the priority is getting the site back up and in working order, the PR in my asks: How much will this downtime impact the overall buzz within the social media echo chamber?

Nearly two hours after Mashable posted the story on the example at hand, NameChk (a tool which examines 84 top social services and tracks whether or not they have a user name) has around 30 tweets and five original stories including a CNET piece. In my opinion, the site has recieved a fair amount of coverage for a service that has no business model, not all that spectacular of an offering and has a range of errors being reported across.

New sites crash all the time, even Twitter used to go through growing pains and look how absurdly successful they've been. With that, I'd like to stake a claim that if the product being launched is strong, presents instant value to users and maybe even has a business model, the company should, for all intensive purposes, secure a significant amount of buzz and coverage among bloggers and across the social media world.

Below are few key ingredients which I feel impact the overall tone and scale of buzz:

Negative - - - / - - / - / + / ++/+++ Positive

Your product/service:
Went down after first article (-) Add another (-) per hour of downtime
Has a flaw (-) Add another (-) per number of flaws
Has a major flaw (- - -)
Is a downloadable product (excluding AdobeAir apps) (- -)
Has no feasible way of making money in today's economy (- -)
Presents real value for businesses or social media experts (++)
Presents actual value to all types of consumers (+++)
Has statistics around usage (++)
Has a business model (+)
Has a realistic business model (++)
Has a realistic business model and referencable customers (+++)
Is directly related to Twitter (+++)
Is directly related to Facebook (++)

Less - - - / - - / - / + / ++/+++ More

Your coverage product/service is launched during:
Popular service redesign (i.e. Facebook) (- - -)
Social Media IPO (i.e. FACEBOOK!?!?) (- - - - - -)
Any new cycles coming out of Twitter (- - -)
Acquisitions (- -)
Funding (- or +)
CES (- -)
SXSW (++)
Advertising Week (+)
A panel at a social media conference (-)
A keynote at a social media conference (++)

What else do you think can impact launch buzz?

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