Sunday, May 6, 2012

Sticky Situation

What's America's 'stickiest' social network, and (more important) why should you care?

According to ComScore's most recent data, the average Facebook user visited the site 36 times this past March. In second place came neither Twitter nor brash upstart Pinterest, but relative unknown Tagged.  Tagged users stuck around longer, too - 12.1 minutes vs. 10.9. To ComScore, numbers like these added up to Tagged being the 'most engaging' U.S. social network.

What are these folks tagging? Each other. Tagged co-founder and CEO Greg Tseng says his company is focused on a "new space called ‘social discovery,’ where people... make new social relationships [online]".

If you've tried to reach out to folks you never met on Facebook, you may have learned the hard way that the practice is discouraged. It's a gap that Tagged specializes in filling. Tseng says Tagged’s 10 million core monthly active users form an average of 100 million new connections per month.

Sounds okay, but I wonder about the actual Tagged experience. On Mashable, where I first learned of this, commenters were pretty much universally down on the site. Here's a typical remark:

"I’m actually turned off by their selling point: “meet new people.” I didn’t want to meet new people on Facebook or Twitter, why would I start somewhere new specifically to do that?"

I suppose you wouldn't, any more than you'd walk into a bar looking for a quart of milk. But the real question - one not directly addressed in the comments - is this: If you were looking to build an online social network, would Tagged be the best means to do it?

UPDATE: The Mashable bashers were right – I don't care for tagged. When reading ComScore's findings, I should have kept in mind that theater floors are 'sticky' too, but it's nothing to brag about.

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