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The RAAKonteur #23 – On Quora, StumbleUpon and RSS


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10 January 2011
10:03
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Is Quora the new Twitter…

A new year, a new hyped service. For 2011 it's set to be Quora, a platform that sits somewhere between Wikipedia, Twitter and LinkedIn Groups. Its premise is simple: you can ask questions, or answer them. But you can do so in a social way. You can vote answers up. Or invite your friends to answer them if you think they know it. And you can follow people without them having to approve. In their own words:

Quora is a continually improving collection of questions and answers created, edited, and organized by everyone who uses it. The most important thing is to have each question page become the best possible resource for someone who wants to know about the question.

So unlike Wikipedia it doesn't just answer the questions 'What is…', but also more a-typical questions like Which Belgian beers should I try in Belgium? or 'How can we make Sweden a better place for startups?', where the CEO from Spotify has chipped in.

If the 'x is following you on Quora'-emails are anything to go by, their user base has grown immensely in the last 2 weeks. And that comes with its own social platform problems, shown by this post from an early adopter defending their turf. Definitely one to keep an eye on.


 

…or is it StumbleUpon?

Talking about the new Twitter. There's been much talk lately of the interest graph versus the social graph. Or people you share interests with versus your friends and family. Besides Quora there is one other player in the interest graph that's making waves.

StumbleUpon has been referring more traffic to other sites than Facebook has. It must be said that there are some doubts over the value of these referrals. Some say SU users are more promiscuous than Facebook or Twitter referrals, hopping from site to site, never settling down. And there are also potential problems with the data. Still it's an impressive performance.
 

RSS RIP

Whether we are talking interest or social graph, one thing seems sure: RSS as a way to consume online news is in steep decline. RSS was killed by the sharing star.

That is bad news for publishers seeking loyalty from their readers. But it's good news for those without a big brand recognition who want to get noticed.
 

Twitter Ranking Equation

This week a Twitter engineer Tweeted the formula on how to determine your rank in terms of followers on Twitter. Now as we pointed out before, simply counting followers is not the most useful metric of Twitter greatness.

Still – it's good to have this tool. There are other tools that measure infuence on Twitter, like Klout and PeerIndex, we put them through their paces last year.


 

Social Media Library

Measuring influence is a holy grail. We've spoken before about how we're a bit sceptical about Social Media monitoring tools and how there is always a strong need for a qualitative (read: human) approach. This week we paid a visit to Social Media Library here in East London, who look at the monitoring approach from a human starting point.

Grown out of an online PR agency, they realised the value of their lists of bloggers and decided to focus on that. So now they offer a database of the most influential people in a certain field, based on a score that's given by one of their researchers.

Not sure how they'll deal with scale and the fast pace of platforms like Twitter, but look at it as a service that does the research for you.
 

Is it the real me?

The State of California has made it illegal to impersonate someone online. There has to be an intent to harm and the bill says nothing about satire etc, but you better be careful if you decide to pretend you're Google CEO Eric Schmidt on Facebook.
 

Small agencies are winning business off traditional digital agencies

As this intriguing blog post points out:

In the novice through mature level brands, the traditional agencies are the first go-to. Corporations rely on them, as they have existing relationships and have purchase orders set in place. Yet we know (see engagement DB and our Facebook marketing research) that most corporations are not even engaging with their customers –they are doing it wrong.

Nuff said.
 

And for the full prediction of 2011…

…work your way through 17 digital Marketing Trends for 2011 by Ashley Friedlein, the CEO of Econsultancy. It's a hefty read, but there is something interesting stuff in there.
 

Tech insight of the week – You’re a hacker: What do you do with your new Kinect?

Microsoft’s new controller for the Xbox 360, Kinect, sold 2.5 million units in the month of December 2010 and they’re projecting to sell 5 million units by end of 2011. But apart from playing supported Xbox 360 games with your new Kinect, what else can you do with it? Read More >>

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