If you use Twitter, then you might have heard of a new microblogging site called Plurk.  Both services are alike in that they are both microblogging sites, in the same way that a Jeep and Ferrari are alike because they both have four wheels.  But just as Twitter holds potential for you to grow your business, so does Plurk. 

First, it must be said upfront that Plurk has an incredibly quirky interface.  If you are used to Twitter's vertical format, the horizontal scrolling you'll encounter at Plurk will likely confuse and possibly even frustrate you at first.  I must admit, I hated Plurk at first, and almost stopped using the site completely.  But I decided to stick around, and here's why I'm glad I did.

The people that use Plurk are INCREDIBLY engaged.  I continue to be amazed at how open and communicative Plurk users are, and there's an incredible sense of community on the site.  This, along with the ability to have threaded conversations, is what makes Plurk such a huge winner.

But the key question is, how could any of this help your business?  Here's an example of what I am talking about; earlier today, I came across this post from Josh Hallett, reviewing the Nikon Coolpix S600.  Josh carefully reviews the camera, and shows several stunning photos taken with the camera.  I am always seeing bloggers review products on their blogs, and I always wonder 'How should the company respond to this?'

And whenever I will see an example such as this, I would either post about it on my blog, or put it on Twitter.  I would point to the post and say something like 'Here Greg is blogging about his Huffy bicycle.  If you worked for Huffy, how would you respond to this?'  And inevitably, either the blog post or my tweet will get one or two comments, but a true discussion about what this company could do, never results. 

So when I saw Josh's post reviewing his new S600, I decided to try again in asking others what Nikon should do about this.  But instead of blogging it, or asking on Twitter, I decided to ask my followers on Plurk what they would do.

And literally within minutes, a vibrant conversation erupted around this issue.  One follower would play off an idea suggested by another.  One would clarify another's thoughts, and add their own.  Suddenly, the hyper-connected nature of Plurk users took over, and a conversation that's incredibly valuable, resulted.

PlurkConvo.jpg

Now if you worked for Nikon, think of the value contained in that one Plurk.  Here you had several people that are immersed in social media, giving you advice on how to leverage social media to build awareness for your brand. 

Here's some of my favorite suggestions:

tamar definitely would thank them. maybe add a section on nikon.com to showcase user testimonials with a blockquote and a link back!

swoodruff maybe ask Josh if he'd like to be part of Flickr group - Cool CoolPixers. Upload your best Nikon shots.

johnrhopkins I would thank him via email, post a message in the comments and consider offering him some perks when he wants to upgrade down the road

Herb  now the real question, is the brand manager (or *someone* at Nikon) searching for these types of things so the *can* do something?

Now think about how you could use Plurk to gain valuable feedback about your own business.  Maybe you are thinking about starting a blog and want feedback on the best platform?  Should you allow comments?  How to you respond to someone that's blogging about your business?  How do you GET people blogging about your business?

As the above Plurk shows (all replies came within 40 mins), Plurk users are incredibly engaged, and quite willing to help you with feedback for business issues you might be facing.  Why not try the site out and see if you like it?  If you want to give it a spin, here are some posts you can check out to give you a better idea of how to use Plurk.

Five Reasons Plurk is Better Than Twitter and Vice Versa
Twitter Vs Plurk, Who Wins?
The Question of Plurk

July 16, 2008





Mack Collier is a social media consultant, trainer and speaker. He has been actively immersed in social media since 2005, and in that time, has helped advise, teach and consult with businesses of all shapes and sizes on how they can better connect with their customers via these amazing tools and sites. While being passionate about the social media space, what truly excites Mack is the human connections that can result from the proper use of these social tools. His motto is "Don't focus on the tools, focus on the connections that the tools help facilitate." His goal is to help his clients create those connections with their customers, and nuture them into relationships that help grow their bottom line.

His social media 'homebase' is The Viral Garden, which in 3 years time Mack has grown into an influential marketing/social media blog with a monthly readership of over 175,000. He is also a frequent contributor to the website Marketing Profs, as well as the marketing blog Daily Fix, and small business blog Search Engine Guide. His writings have been referenced in several mainstream publications and websites, including The Washington Post, MSNBC.com, Ad Age, CNET, and The Boston Globe.

Mack is also a requested speaker and has presented at some of the top social media conferences and events, including South By Southwest Interactive, Marketing Profs Digital Marketing Mixer, and Small Business Marketing Unleashed. He is also passionate about teaching companies how to use social media sites and tools more effectively, and offers training and seminars privately to companies, in addition to his public speaking schedule.

You can learn more information about Mack's social media training and consulting services here. If you need a social media speaker for your event, or want to know where Mack will be speaking next, click here. If you want to email Mack, click here.

Mack wrote this bio. The third-person thingie is just for fun.






Comments(5)

Very true! I always believe that it's the people who make a microblogging site as good as it is--Twitter & Plurk prove that in their own unique ways. :-) The comment format on Plurk encourages a level of interaction that never ceases to amaze me. :-)

Thanks for the links! Here's another from @Teeg's blog that I've found helpful:

http://www.sucomments.com/10-minute-guide-to-plurk-and-other-plurky-stuff/

I just started using Plurk a few weeks ago. The horizontal scroll is still difficult for me to get used to. I really like how you can track comments better with Plurk.

I use just about all the micro blogging sites through hellotxt and visit the actual sites from time to time. Jaiku has turned out to be my favorite but since it's still in private beta there are not a lot of users. Jaiku offers the same type of comment tracking as Plurk.

I honestly think Jaiku will beat them all once it has opened to the public.

Great post!

I really liked this. I have been on both Twitter and Plurk for awhile and find that Twitter is for declarations and Plurk is more of a conversation. The one thing that is harder on Plurk is it seems to be harder to accumulate friends because the invitation process is more involved.

Twitter & Plurk is the best, I used it few times ago. and the result is verry imppresive.

Why use either site? Why not just use cell-phone text?

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Search Engine Guide > Mack Collier > This is Why I Love Plurk (And Why You Should Too)