Sunday, February 24, 2008

Shared feed mania - What's in it for YOU?

I started using Google's Shared Reader about 8 months ago, when it appeared that the entire tech (SEM?) community was using it (and yes, Twitter) to stay abreast of what was going on around them.

About two months ago, I inserted a subscribe link (to our shared feed) on this blog (still there, on the right) along with a graphic of the latest stories (including ours) that we shared beneath it.

It served numerous purposes including keeping our readers up-to-date when blogging in the middle of the night wasn't a good idea. (Yes, those are the posts that you see 'edit' under because I was half asleep?). Generally, NOT a good idea :)

I first learned about ReadBurner from Louis Gray's blog. Louis has carved out a cool niche in this area, following the various shared feed aggregators as they appear on the scene, among them SharedReader , RSSMeMe, and most recently LinkRiver.

Lots of developers out there, looking to make our lives a little easier?

Back to analytics and the reason for this post.

Only one of the above, at least according to this blog's Feedburner stats, is returning visitors. It's LinkRiver.

I chatted briefly on Friday with LinkRiver's developer Adam Stiles. Adam was incredibly responsive and engaging. In fact I was tempted to do our first audio interview but time just didn't permit it that night.

Here's one of Adam's comments:
"One point I'm trying to make about LR (and perhaps the product needs
to make the point better itself) is that you can follow whoever you
want to follow. In that way it avoids all the Digg/Reddit/lowest-common
-denominator problem. Follow who you want to follow.
That promise will be realized as the user base expands, but I
think LR has great potential in the area for personalized news".

If you haven't seen LinkRiver, you can find it here. The reason for the return visits becomes rather obvious.