Seven years ago, I started this blog as a place to add my thoughts about people sharing. At one point, this blog had 4,000 readers a month, and last year, it went over 100K total views.
That said, it is time to end this experiment. LinkedIn has invited me to post on their platform. My first post already has 6 comments and 43 likes. While this blog was never about numbers, LinkedIn offers an audience. I believe in LinkedIn more than I believe in blogging, for now.
So this is it. I’m not going to shut it down, but I am going to stop caring about the blog spam. Eventually no one will read this blog, so the blog spam will be worthless.
See you over on LinkedIn.
Top ten lists have died off. I think they disappeared because blogs did. Top ten lists don’t work on Twitter.
Take a quick look at Digg. At almost anytime, you will see a list of things on there. The top ten things to see before you die. The top ten airports in the world. (Personal plug for Charlotte Airport: free internet which is a really nice touch).
We did a Top Ten List of the Greatest Sports call of all time for a client to great success. On this blog, the post that got the most traffic by a factor of almost 20 is called “Ten Things to do with a Facebook page“.
Top ten lists work get shared. Here, in my opinion, is why.
5.Headlineis simple: There’s a reason that newspapers have people to write the headlines of the articles. When the headline is about a top ten list, it’s a perfectly relevant headline. If people are…
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Picture a phone.
Depending on your age, you might have pictured:
- A home phone with a cord.
- A cordless home phone.
- A mobile phone.
- An iPod touch (Facetime)
- A computer (Skype)
To my seven-year old daughter, all of the above are a phone. She can customize her experience with communication depending on how she wants to experience the conversation. If it needs pictures, she’ll adapt. If it is just words, she won’t adapt.
However, her grandparents mostly use the phone. They rarely call on the computer because when they picture a phone, they default to the phone.
We live in a time where audiences are customizing their experience. I listen to podcasts from the UK, watch Netflix and read The Globe and Mail. My daughter is currently watching Charlie and Lola on YouTube.
My daughter lives in a world where mass personalization is the norm. She will organize via playlists – not have playlists dictated to her as prime time lineups. She will organize the internet her way, not a newspaper’s way. She will organize her entertainment in the manner that works best for her, not his it is set up on a dial.
She will look at the world, and interact with brands differently than you and I. And she is coming. To her, customization will be the cost of business not an option we can throw out there to position our products.
So what does that mean for higher ed?
First of all, I think higher ed is already mass customized. By definition, a liberal arts education isn’t mass produced. One can major in biochemistry and minor in theater.
A place with more options offers a chance to mass customize for students. The school where I work has 53 majors. That’s almost 3000 major/minor options – that is mass customization.
For someone who grows up with a playlist, getting one in college won’t be a change. The change, I think, is how we communicate something we already offer. The coming struggle will be that people who are getting used to mass customization will need to communicate to people who have already lived it.
We’ll need to change. Because the change is coming.
What do you think? Where does customization fit into the message of higher ed? Should it?
Online however, things aren’t constrained by physics.
Online, there isn’t a need for order. We don’t need “files” or “folders”. Those are real world things demanded by the requirement to put things in places. Online, things are merely 0’s and 1’s and computers don’t need an elaborate hierarchy to find them.
That’s why at grocery.com (a made up place), canned tomatoes can be tagged with ‘tomatoes, canned, vegetable, canned food, camping, staples, pasta, crock pot, etc. In fact, there’s no limitation on how to tag the tomatoes – and since a tag is the offline equivalent of a place (ie, where you go to find it), the more things you tag the tomatoes with, the better chance people will find them in a search.
In the real world, the grocery store guesses and uses shopping carts to strategically placed to get you walking around (and some, like Wegmans, I think purposefully crate alleys that get you lost).
On the internet, things are way more miscellaneous. Don’t think of your content as being one thing for one person in one place (as one would a can of tomatoes). Online, the can be the beginning of a killer crock pot recipe, the start of a great pasta, or just a can of tomatoes.
When putting together a marketing plan, perhaps it’s time to consider ‘how will our target market find this information?”
Can I call you Link? I fell like I’ve known you for years. I was telling people to add Slideshare to their LinkedIn profile four years ago. Five years ago I wanted our senior staff to use LinkedIn instead of the “people” page on our site.
I think I’ve written about LinkedIn over 20 times. This post, the 10 things you can do on LinkedIn right now was so popular it received dozens of blog spam posts about Good Credit (which I changed to Bad Credit).
Anyway, back to my letter. Thanks for adding “majors” and “skills” to the /edu/ section.
You have one of the most awesome databases on the Internet. You are the outcome proof of Colleges and Universities. What do you want to do with a History degree? Why, just click History.
Want to know what kind of skills you’ll learn? Click major and see the skills. It is the perfect tool for prospective students. It is also the perfect tool for alumni. That would be why there are 19,000+ of them on LinkedIn.
Here’s the thing though: students don’t see the value. A student goes to a Liberal Arts school and does more than get a history degree. They acquire skills. They participate in activities. They become complete people able to accomplish almost anything in the real world.
The schools have that data.
So here’s a thought: what if schools could feed LinkedIn the activity and accomplishment data to your database? This would encourage students to get a profile, while also showcasing the value proposition of an education. Especially a residential Liberal Arts education.
Additionally, the profile could have a College approved stamp on it, meaning the data on the profile is certified.
LinkedIn, you’re awesome for people who have “work experience.” I think you can be awesome for people who have “College experience.” You might not need help, but I’m offering it.