Posts Tagged ‘stumbleupon’

2013: The Drive for Social Profits

StumbleUpon recently announced plans to lay off 30% of its staff in an effort to drive profits.

StumbleUpon is one of the most popular social media services. Now, it is aggressively trying to turn itself into a vibrant business rather than just a popular one.

Is this a sign of the times for social networks? Or did StumbleUpon simply have some operationals issues in a overly competitive field?

Even with a handful of glossy redesigns, traffic (equalling profits) has been the main goal for StumbleUpon. What could StumbleUpon of done to drive both traffic and profits earlier in the game? Did StumbleUpon stumble in creating a viable business.

This really showcases the problem and opportunity that many social networks are experiencing. The opportunity lies in the drive of profits.

This might be the year that social profits take the front burner, where they belong. Having a shiny new toy will not matter if it isn’t making money.

Even the behemoths such as Facebook and Twitter are scrambling to drive profits through a variety of revenue streams.

Some of them will work, some won’t. They will have to be persistant, diligent and creative in how and where they try to make money; that’s just the reality of the thriving industry.

At the very least, 2013 will be a year to watch how social turns traffic into dollars.

 

 

 

Why It’s Time to Embrace StumbleUpon

stumbleupon social mediaDo you Stumble or, more specifically, do you use StumbleUpon?

While StumbleUpon doesn’t have a low profile, it has an interesting place within the social media landscape. While Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube and Pinterest are definitely top of mind, StumbleUpon works away in the background.

But when you look at the numbers, it’s easy to see that StumbleUpon should be a priority for anyone looking to marry the power of content (blog posts, infographics, photos and videos) and social media.

According to Mashable, StumbleUpon cracked through 25 million users last month, a 25% increase in the past seven months. Meanwhile, there are 1.2 billion pages reviewed, or “stumbled” by StumleUpon users a month.

For people not familiar with StumbleUpon, it is a free social bookmarking service that helps people discover new Websites by letting them quickly browse multiple Websites. These Websites can be completely random accessed or based on specific interests. Either way, StumbleUpon’s has a goal to guide people to Websites they might have never otherwise found.

What makes StumbleUpon interesting is it’s a way to expose people to new and different kinds of Websites at a time when curation is giving more people an increasingly narrowly focused view of the Web.

For content creators, StumbleUpon should be explored another part of their social media distribution strategy, along with tools such as Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Delicious and blogs.

There are a couple approaches to leverage StumbleUpon. Content can quickly be submitted by using StumbleUpon.com, a social widget or a browser extension.

The process simple: You provide the URL, the category of the content, and a comment. StumbleUpon also offers a premium service that can be used for promotional purposes – its “Paid Discovery” service costs five to 25 cents s for each unique user that clicks on your Website.

For more thoughts on how to effectively use StumbleUpon, check out the following:

- Jeff Bullas: How to Use StumbleUpon for Business

KissMetrics: 4 Ways to Increase Your Traffic Using StumbleUpon

Tia Peterson: 10 Tips for Effective Marketing on StumbleUpon!

How Important is Traffic from StumbleUpon?

Over the past few months, there has been a fascinating development in how people are being referred to Web sites: StumbleUpon has emerged as the most popular traffic sources – something that popular blogger Fred Wilson (aka a VC) talked about yesterday in noting his traffic had doubled recently.

After a long period of being ignored while it was part of the eBay empire, StumbleUpon had jumped back into the spotlight as a more popular traffic driver than Twitter and Facebook.

While StumbleUpon doesn’t consistently deliver traffic to my personal blog, it does appear on a semi-regular basis, which is always pleasantly surprising.

But here’s the thing about StumbleUpon: what is the quality of the traffic that it drives to Web sites? As SocialMouths made abundantly clear in a recent post, StumbleUpon is a “content discovery tool” that people use to browse multiple Web sites based on their interests.

As a result, it is not really a service used by people to find specific Web sites. It means people are “tasting” rather than “eating”. So rather than doing a search and then spending a fair amount of time on a Web site, many StumbleUpon users stumble upon a Web site before quickly clicking to the next one.

So before Web sites get too excited about StumbleUpon has a traffic driver, they need to ask themselves whether these visitors have any value.

Are these people, for example, going to look at and act upon advertising, will they ask for more information about a product or service, or will they purchase something?

It would be fair to suggest some of them might turn into customers but I would suggest the vast majority are taking a quick look before moving on to the next Web site.

This isn’t to suggest StumbleUpon has no value because any source of new traffic is good thing. But before anyone gets too carried away with StumbleUpon, they should consider the type of people that use it, and how much value they have.

Social Media’s Other Superstars

Facebook, Twitter and YouTube dominant the social media landscape but there are plenty of other services that are thriving and, in the process, attracting millions of users.

Here’s a list featuring some of the players that should also be considered “superstars”:

1. StumbleUpon: After being purchased by eBay, StumbleUpon fell off the radar. But after re-purchased by co-founders Garrett Camp and Geoff Smith (and a group of investors), StumbleUpon has come soaring back to life. In June, StatCounter said StumbleUpon was the biggest traffic driver among social media Web sites in the U.S., topping Facebook. If you haven’t used StumbleUpon in a while or haven’t used it at all, it’s pleasantly surprising to see how much it provides as a discovery tool

2. Reddit: Far too startups are stifled when they are purchased by a large corporate entity. Reddit, however, has thrived since it was purchased by Conde Nast Publications in 2006. For many years, Reddit took a back seat to Digg within the news-sharing world but that has changed as Reddit continues to gain traction while Digg struggles to stay viable.

3. Tumblr: With 450 million pageviews a day (and 8.5 billion a month), Tumblr has rocketed into the top tier as millions of people discover blogs that feature more multi-media, videos and photography than “traditional” blogs powered by services such as WordPress and Blogger.

4. Viadeo: Despite having 35 million users, Viadeo get nowhere near the same amount of attention as LinkedIn. Viadeo is a strong presence in Europe, India, South America and China.

5. Hi5: Another example of a social networking service that has thrived outside North America. With 11.5 million users, hi5 has carved out a niche by offering interactive games, selling virtual goods and offering a wide variety of games.

Any suggestions on other social media services that should be part of this group?