Why do some social networks thrive, while others fail?
I’m sure you can all list a few social tools you eagerly tried out and then promptly forgot.
I asked some of my friends if they’d tried and abandoned a social network or tool – and why. You’ll probably find yourself agreeing with them, while in other cases their answers will surprise you:
Vern Schulz: The social media app I’ve abandoned (long ago) is Gowalla. Gowalla showed great promise in the start, I liked its navigation and interface was pretty easy to use. Unfortunately, it went the way of Beta video cassettes and the public take-up was poor – hence I dropped it [Note, Gowalla ceased operating two years ago – Prakky]
I’m also finding Klout’s relevance is … well … irrelevant to me. Maybe it’s because I’m not a business and I’ve no need for knowing what my SM impact is. I’ve no doubt it’s a valuable tool, but for me as a personal account, I don’t have any interest.
Alex Croker: I’ve pretty much abandoned Hootsuite. I found it to be excellent as a business managing tool – or a tool where you have a lot of pages or responses to get to as a team. However, as an individual I’ve found it frustrating, irritating and almost like a leach on my phone notifications.
The most frustrating feature is by far when it brings up messages which I have responded to a long time ago – it regularly does this with direct messages and could use much better synchronisation with my Twitter profile more commonly accessed through my boring old Twitter app. That said – it is much better for lists than Twitter’s app.
See Alex’s YouTube channel here: https://www.youtube.com/user/TheOlfactoryEquation
Tom Williamson : Path springs to mind because I see people still using it and I occasionally check in to see who’s there and if it’s changed. It rarely does. For me, Path was too similar to too many other apps. I could do almost everything there that I can do in a multitude of other apps. Writing it now, it sounds like the dream app – a one stop shop for all my social addictions but it wasn’t. I felt bombarded with options to share where I was, what I was listening to, what I was watching, how I felt about it, what time I went to bed, when I had lunch, add a photo, say something interesting and then post it *phew*.
I also remember when Facebook was more complex; I could super poke, throw sheep and cows, I had a Fun Wall and a farm full of animals. Then the Zuck simplified it. One wall, games became apps, businesses were given pages and status updates were the focus. It was simple.
Slowly, features have been added; we can now let people know how we feel, tag places we’re updating from and friends we’re with but it was a steady introduction, not an attack of features to learn how to use.
Perhaps I wouldn’t have strayed from Path (pun 100% intended) if it had started out with 10% of the features and slowly added the rest. If the objective was clear from the outset – what did the creators of Path want me to do? – maybe I’d still be using it and the answer to your questions would be about Facebook.
Jenny Clift: “Instagram, I’m sorry, I’ve broken up with you. I tried. Yes I did. But I have to tell you there is another. See, I started using Flickr in 2005 and it works for me. I can use a web browser or my phone to upload to it. Alas, Instagram, you won’t let me upload using a web browser and that is a deal breaker for me. Plus there’s only so many social media platforms that I can share my photos with. Flickr, as I mentioned, is one. Facebook is another. So, Instagram, sorry, it’s bye bye to you.” See Jenny’s site: http://contentis.co
I also asked the question on Twitter. GooglePlus and Foursquare featured in the most responses.
@Prakky 4 square. I couldn’t see the point of it.
— Tom (@big_hawkeye_tom) April 4, 2014
@Prakky Google + as I just have NO IDEA how to use it. And possibly too slack to spend enough time trying to figure it out! 😉
— Janis (@Janis_Hill) April 4, 2014
@Prakky tumblr. Interaction was difficult; it seemed more like a megaphone. I still have my account but don’t check it.
— Melissa Gibson (@Leisha_Kate) April 4, 2014
How about me?
I’ve given up on Get Glue, Miso app, Path (after a few attempts) and the New MySpace to name a few.
With most of them, the main factor was the lack of unique interaction there. My friends in those platforms were also friends with me on Twitter or Facebook. We were ‘trying’ the tools together I suppose, and found nothing compelling to keep us there. The exception is Miso. I did enjoy Miso not for potential friendships and networking, but the basic utility of keeping track of what episode I was up to when it came to my favourite TV series. Sadly, the app kept crashing on me or acting strangely and I eventually gave it up. I may yet return … watch this space.
I’ll put the question to you now: what’s a social tool you’ve tried and abandoned? (And why?)