A Business Technology Place

An idea to engage loyal customers

A friend recently converted trinkets and memorabilia from his place of work into a photo album on Facebook. It was simply entitled “The Office”. He had each item placed on a white background for the photos. Then he tagged friends on Facebook who had some part in the historical story related to the item.

The Science of P3

An example image from "The Office" photo album

As I looked through the album I thought about how this idea could be used by companies to create a virtual museum of historical artifacts related to their company. Imagine a longstanding company like Coca-Cola or General Electric with a series of online catalogs on their web site. The catalogs could be grouped by business division, decade, or artifact type.

This gives customers, or really the general public, a chance to see the rich history of a company and a chance to explore the stories and meanings behind each item. It’s a social engagement to create a connection. With a social site, such as Facebook or a company blog, the company could further engage with customers through comments.

Using Facebook to comment on blogs

As I continue to publish more content on the Internet through my blog I have noticed a trend developing with responses and content creation. Web SyndicationThe majority of responses or comments that I receive regarding blog posts are through Facebook. I have linked my blog posts to an RSS feed, Plaxo Pulse, Facebook, LinkedIn, and a few other sites. So as I publish an entry, it is fanned out across these platforms. This allows me to distribute the content to a different group of people that I’m connected to through these various sites.
Blogs are setup to allow comments and additional discussion below the original content. Popular blogs with thousands of readers may generate a few to a multitude of comments based on the entry topic and the number of readers. Studies that I have read show that most readers of blogs do not create additional content, they simply read to find information on a topic or to follow a particular writer. In fact, many studies I’ve read in the past showed that most Internet users are content consumers rather than content providers.

This is changing though. The recent boom of Facebook and Twitter are increasing the number of content creators. What helps Facebook and Twitter are that they provide a framework for people to create short bursts of content. Unlike a blog, discussion group, or user forum Facebook and Twitter allow users to quickly push content without having to worry about creating paragraphs of information. It’s quick and easy. Everyone loves to talk about their kids, pets, hobbies, vacations, music, sports teams, etc.

So what’s the big deal? Well, while the amount of Internet content syndication is increasing, the ability to centralize all of the follow-on comments and discussion is not. The comments and discussion are only visible on the tool used to read the web syndication. So for example, the comments made by my friends on Facebook don’t show on the blog itself. So there is opportunity here for the creation of a new service to centralize and syndicate all of the comments and discussion. Ultimately this benefits everyone because all of the readers of the content can participate and learn from the full breadth of discussion.

What do you say? If you are reading this from within Facebook, do you not read blogs directly? Would you reply to a post on Facebook but not directly on a blog site?

Photo Credit: