Greg Berry just posted a useful list called “Five Rules for Social Networks.” It contains useful ideas such as making sure that there’s a clear value proposition for users to connect with others and getting others to connect with them.
In some social networks, the “gift” is “we get to be more closely connected”. This is appealing especially to millennials who like maximum, always-together connectivity with their friends.
For older folks and “serious” professionals, the gift is sometimes harder to convey. You invite your friend. Your friend signs up but doesn’t have a clue what to do, or more important, why to care.
LinkedIn, which serves the older group, has a very clear value proposition for professionals, but still the value proposition often doesn’t come across in the invitation or initial visit to the site. To finally try to fix this LinkedIn has recently announced a new “Learning Center” where new, and old, users can go to understand better what exactly they can do, and why. One of the best resources on the learning center are two new very short but very clear videos on how and why professionals can use LinkedIn. It’s very easy to send these to people you know.
The overview video is in two parts, but you can see them both together in this LinkedIn blog post. Or use these two YouTube links:
BTW, I still like “viral” because it really means “contagious”. If something good is contagious, that’s good. Otherwise, bad.