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December 01, 2008

Pull Your Blog Into FriendFeed and Increase Exposure

By Jesse Stay of Stay N' Alive (Twitter/FriendFeed)

I've been following several people on FriendFeed that I'm a big fan of and are fairly active Twitter users. Until recently, I would like their Tweets and share them with my followers regularly. However, I'm realizing a trend amongst new FriendFeed users, including some of these Twitter users I follow, in which they pick one or two services and neglect to share the other places they belong to. Perhaps the most important of those is their own blog. I'd like to suggest this is a mistake - and I think it's mostly a misunderstanding of what FriendFeed can actually do for your blog.

Let's start with a simple diagram. Let's say you're Bob, and you set up FriendFeed to import you blog automatically. You write a blog post, perhaps similar to this one, which in turn gets imported into FriendFeed.

Now, let's assume you're John in the diagram. You're following Bob, so automatically, Bob's blog post immediately goes to the top of your Feed. You notice this, you click on the link, give Bob a little traffic, read the article, then click on the "like" link in FriendFeed. (Note that all posts on FriendFeed force users to click through to read the post - different than an RSS Reader, which keeps the traffic to the Reader)

Now, here's where FriendFeed is powerful. When John clicks "like" in FriendFeed, Bob's article now gets shared with all of John's friends, which sends the article to the top of their feeds as well. They then have the potential to "like" the article, and share with their friends, and it goes on and on. The same goes with any Tweet, Picture, Music, Video, or any other item you share on FriendFeed. The same thing also happens when Bob's friend, Fred, sees the article, and comments on it. Any "like" or comment on FriendFeed sends it immediately back to the top of all their friends' feeds and the post gets shared over and over.

RSS

Now, let's imagine Bob, after writing the article for his blog, does a search on FriendFeed for his article. Let's just imagine it's named "Is Your Blog on FriendFeed?". He puts "who:everyone Is Your Blog on FriendFeed" in the search bar at http://friendfeed.com (the "who:everyone" means he wants results from everyone that mentions it, not just Bob's friends), and the returned data shows every like, share, or comment about Bob's article. Those results are also available as RSS. Bob simply needs to add the returned URL to his RSS Reader (there is an RSS link down at the bottom of the search results page), and now he'll receive every "like", share, or comment about his article in his RSS Reader. Bob can now click on each one of those, and in turn, "like" or comment on those as well, bringing it back up to the top of both the submitters of those shares' feeds, as well as Bob's own friends' feeds. It also lets Bob track every comment on FriendFeed going on about his article.

Let's also add that every person that has subscribed to Bob's blog in Google Reader can now share Bob's blog post with their Google Reader friends. They can import their Google Reader shares into FriendFeed (which you should also do), and now every share in Google Reader gets recorded in FriendFeed, and Bob can like those as well. Bob now has full control over what is being said about his blog on the web, and he can enter each one into the FriendFeed promotional cycle. This is why FriendFeed is so powerful!

FriendFeed Growth

Recent Compete.com statistics show that FriendFeed in the last month has surged while Twitter growth has slowed. While far from Twitter traffic numbers, FriendFeed actually grew more in the last month than Twitter, and FriendFeed is only getting started. FriendFeed provides real-time updates, popular amongst bloggers and media for finding breaking news, along with the ability to thread comments and track all types of content on the web and discuss that content. There's no doubt FriendFeed is a threat to Twitter, and your blog has the potential to see even more traffic than Twitter, even at these low numbers. Now imagine what happens when FriendFeed approaches Twitter-level traffic and you got in early and now have one of the stronger followings on FriendFeed? You are now in a pretty powerful situation with your blog.

If you haven't considered importing your blog into FriendFeed, I hope I have made you reconsider. The ability for your posts to continually get repeated at the top of people's feeds as you write new articles makes it a must for anyone wanting to compete in the blogosphere. Have you imported your blog into FriendFeed?

You can discuss on FriendFeed below! Now, let's try a little experiment. If you read this in Google Reader, go and import your Google Reader shares into FriendFeed. Now, share this article. Then, watch that article and you'll notice that for each person sharing the article I will like your share on FriendFeed. Give it a try!

Read more by Jesse Stay at Stay N' Alive.