First up an advance warning – I am really after your participation through this post!
I have never really got into digg. In the past I have had days when I have visited it a lot, and then months when I don’t bother at all. I initially perceived it as a ‘cult’ type activity, and I still pretty much feel the same. I admire tremendously what they have achieved, but I feel that the ‘desire to be dugg’ has overtaken the desire to post good content, and I find the commenters tend more towards the smart arse, put you down type of comments than the constructive, insightful or helpful. In short, it comes over as a club that people are desperate to be members of, but that aren’t that respectful to new members.
I have never felt that digg is a good way of building either ‘sticky’ traffic, or regular commenters, and as both of those are way more important than ‘5 minutes of fame’ on the digg front page I have never worried about not been dugg, nor have I actively sort it. Sure I have a digg option on the blog but that is more by default than design.
Digg is not actually that great for traffic building, unless you reach the front page, digg traffic is limited. Even reaching the up and coming popular page no longer provides a steady stream however hit the front page and traffic will increase rapidly, with a sharp decline over a period of a week. Digg long term traffic is very week with even popular stories only receiving a handful of new visitors. Comments on the Digg page do increase traffic but only at the up and coming stage. Venture Skills
Stumbleupon on the other hand has consistantly received good press for increasing traffic:
Even unpopular stumble receives a small amount of traffic. Stumble traffic arrives in waves with an initial test wave and 2 or 3 follow up waves within the week. To continue the stumble a user or users must thumb it up. Even 1 or 2 thumbs up will bring in a fair amount of traffic. Stumbleupon traffic also seems to increase based on reviews, the biggest factor in Stumbleupon traffic appears to be the audience rating of the original stumbler. This seems to dictate the number of waves the site gets. Venture Skills
I am intrigued by this. Not because I want to increase my own traffic, as although I would be telling a porky if I said that wouldn’t be nice, the reality is that I am comfortable with what this site achieves, and the community that it has produced is the most important aspect of the blog in my opinion. I am intrigued as part of the research and work I am now doing for a number of clients with the specific aim of helping them to create, retain and grow traffic. Without exception their initial brief has always included ‘and we want to be dugg a lot’, and they have yet to be able to explain why. The perception is that digg is guaranteed traffic and comments. The reality is that it isn’t. The question is can Stumbleupon with its more community/social networking type base, and the slower burn of referrels and relationships do what digg fails to do?
I hadn’t realised just how well researched and debated this subject was until I started reading articles like this and to be honest I could probably say that I have enough evidence from what I have read, but I would really like to see what the effect is first hand. My view, for what it is worth, is that digg encourages (and rewards) one off posts – people write posts specifically to be dugg, or try and post a news item first to be dugg, whereas Stumbleupon rewards good blogs, that provide quality content over an extended period of time. I have a feeling that Stumbleupon readers are more discerning and interested in the content and the community than digg!
I have spent time today setting up my Stumbleupon profile and ‘playing’ around on the site more and so far I have been happy with what I have come across. I particularly like the filters for the type of site you want to visit, and I like the thumbs up/down approach a lot. It certainly helps if you use Firefox and install the toolbar, and yes it can be addictive!
What I would really appreciate would be if you could add me as a friend on Stumbleupon (naturally it has a Facebook application), and if you could start to ‘stumble’ my posts for a while so that I can see what the impact is.
Ironically it would probably help if you could digg the posts at the same time to see how the two compare.
I really apprecaite all that you can do toi help with this. I be talking about it to Tim tomorrow on his show.