Bullets of “Designing for the Social Web” by Joshua Porter

Some time ago I listened to a podcast, where Joshua Porter was talking about the social design. Thanks, John, for the reference! I got interested, and bought his Designing for the Social Web book (even before it was published :)). When it got on John’s summer reading list, I was sure that the book is going to be good… and, oh yeah, it was!

Since there are so many good points and examples in the book it’s rather impossible to give a short overview of it. Every good point leads to another good point, and I wouldn’t want to leave the good points outside the summary :) I don’t want to rewrite the book here as well… All in all – I strongly advice to read it and learn the DOs and DONTs in social Web design.

While I can’t summarize the book, I decided to make up a reference of points that were inside it (a little bit more than table of contents), just to memorize them better.

Designing for the Social Web

  1. What’s in the book
  2. The Rise of the Social Web
    • The Amazon effect
      • The power of Amazon is in customer reviews
      • Counter-intuitive economics is based on motivated and self-organized group of people
      • New business model where the value is more than money
    • The social Web
      • Social apps are those that support social interaction
      • Humans are social, software should be as well
      • Behavior = f ( Personality , Environment ) (Lewin’s equation)
      • People behave differently in groups than they do individually, and vice versa
      • People compare themselves to those in their social groups
      • When people are uncertain they rely on social connections to help them out
      • People we know greatly influence how we act
      • People derive enormous value from social interaction that cannot be accounted for in monetary terms
      • Attention economy
      • The biggest and the fastest growing Web properties are social
  3. A Framework for Social Web Design
    • The AOF (Activities, Objects, Features) method
      • Focus on one and only one primary activity (What your audience is doing)
      • Identify the social objects (what are the objects that people interact with while doing that activity)
      • Choose the core feature set (what are the actions that people perform on the objects)
    • Personal value of software precedes network value (always!)
    • Social interaction has a lot of details and nuances, the software should respect that
    • Major part of social design is around social objects
    • URLs make objects sharable
    • URLs make object easier to find and re-find
    • URLs allow people to link to the object directly
    • Search engines like URLs
    • Limit the feature set to minimum that is crucial in order not to over complicate the app
    • Don’t copy features from competitors
  4. Authentic Conversations
    • Constantly communicate to people that are using the app
    • Show that you care: engaging, awareness of problems, showing interest, apologize when guilty
    • Customer service is the new marketing
    • Conversation gives more data and feedback
    • React positively to negative feedback
    • Treat criticism as opportunity
    • It’s better to think of technology like blogs, forums, and discussion boards as amplifying customer opinion rather than improving it
    • Don’t wait for conversation: initiate it
    • Have a community manager
    • Community building isn’t about features
    • Technology cannot solve people problems
  5. Design for Sign-up
    • 8 seconds to create interest
    • Communicate well and to the right people (roles) what the software is about in order to increase any momentum a person brings
    • The journalism technique (who is it for, what is it, where can I use it, when can I use it, why is it important to me, how does it work)
    • Show who is using the app (social proof, power of authority)
    • Give numbers when they are big
    • Upon signup, ask only for information that’s absolutely necessary and when it’s necessary
    • Progressively engage people, instead of directly force them to sign-up
  6. Design for Ongoing Participation
    • People participate because of motivation, not money, not features, not advertising
    • Identify the right motivations to use
    • Create the UI that supports and encourages the motivations
    • Identity (needed withing social groups)
    • Uniqueness (needs to be emphasized)
    • Reciprocity (exchanging for mutual benefit)
    • Reputation (what other thing about you)
    • Sense of efficacy (good work => positive effect)
    • Control (provide a sense of it)
    • Ownership (My, Your => responsibility, friendliness, more value [endowment effect])
    • Getting two people to cooperate
      • Probability of meeting in the future
      • Ability to identify each other
      • Record of past behaviour
  7. Design for Collective Intelligence
    • …aggregating the behavior of many people, we can gain novel insights (e.g. digg.com)
    • Content is considered more important when it’s
      • On a home page
      • Shown more often
      • At the top of the page
      • Higher in ranked displays
    • Types of aggregation
      • Chronological listing
      • Popularity within a time range
      • Participant ranking
      • Collaborative filtering
      • Relevance
      • Social (friend suggestion)
      • User-based views
    • Make giving feedback as easy as possible
  8. Design for Sharing
    • Connectors are people who live to share
    • Sharers advertise for you
    • What sharers say is more powerful than what you say
    • Sharers tell you why you’re great
    • We share to enjoy similar experiences with others
    • We share to improve our social status
    • Sharing allows to show our affection for others
    • We may anticipate reciprocity when we share
    • AOF objects should be sharable
    • Call for action to share must be convenient and reachable
    • Sharing form as simple as possible
    • After sharing action is made allow for sharing again (multi sharing)
    • The more personal sharing message is the more powerful it is
    • Keep statistics if sharing works
  9. The Funnel Analysis

PS. Note that many of the points above are rewritten “as is” from the book without quotations

About these ads

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

%d bloggers like this: