For a long time I have tried to find a common ground for all successful Internet social media projects out there. What do they provide to their users that other projects do not? What do they give? What values do they bring? I guess this is a far from complete model, but as I finalized it I realized that the first letters in the words spelled PARTY and thus I got inspiration to this blog post.
Explaining the PARTY success model is quite easy, and I cannot find a single successful social media project that do not fullfil all of these criterias. Likewise non-successful social media projects fail on one or more of the criteria.
PARTY success model Explained
I will try to briefly explain each one of the letters in the PARTY success model. I will not get into defining what I believe is success. But considering my usual greed, it involves some kind of positive balance sheet as well as being highly popular.
The first one is simple enough. They give their users a way to gain publicity, stardom and some kind of way to be publicly recognized. Publicity in groups or publicity to the whole world. Publicity is one of the strongest driving forces for the initial success of Web 2.0 which layed the foundation for social media.
A successful social media project should empower its users to associate themselves with values, with their idols and with brands that they want to be associated with. In line with publicity, this is how they want to be percieved by their peers and thats why it needs to be a factor in a successful project.
I suppose this one is what will give me the most shit of all these generalising categories as I believe no social media project will ever survive without sharing revenue with its users. It cannot be artificial or emothional revenue, but it has to be money or service, rational values shared from the company that earns from the user producing. The user will allways move onto another service if they feel taken advantage of and thus, if you earn a lot of money or reputation –> share it if you want to be successful.
A successful social media project is able to generate traffic. Either through search engine visibility or through viral word-of-mouth spread. It should generate traffic, then distribute it. It is not only important but a survival factor on the modern web to control the traffic. I mean.. god… ask Google, ask Facebook, ask Twitter, ask DellIdeastorm, ask WordPress, ask LinkedIn. All of them show each user in one way or the other what kind of traffic they bring to their users. Get the users the traffic, get them to notice it and get them to get back because of it.
We all need to strive for something and thus a yardstick needs to be put in place to make people feel as though they are evolving in the community. If it is through a toplist or through a followers number, or if its through a recommendations counter or if its through whatever is there to be measured by. The yardstick has to be there to make the users feel as though they are evolving, to show that they know more, or are older or are a little bit better than those who are not.
Well basically the PARTY success model for social media projects is brand new. I just found out about it as my brain came to think of it. It is a fun model, it is a interesting model, it is a model you can sell and it is a model that is based upon my own generalizations. Please make your coments below and complete the model. Let’s make the road to success a friggin’ PARTY!!!