StumbleUpon is the wonderful browser plugin that allows you to discover new content almost at random. The service also allows you to network by adding friends with similar interests. Once you become a fan of someone content that they find interesting will be served to you. Becoming mutual friends allows you to send content to a person while including a personal note.
Personally, I love StumbleUpon and use it more than any other social networking platform out there. The ability to send content to my friends (with a note attached) is just great.
With all that said I also like stumbling through general content that my friends have not approved of. Some of that content is good while some of it is utter garbage. As a long-time stumbler let me help you out with the following tips:
- Stumbling Tips
- If you are going to Stumble your own content make sure it is good - Everyone thinks their own stuff is the bee's knees, it's not. There is a lot of utter crap in the blogosphere. There is also a vast amount of crap that is nothing but rewritten crap from somewhere else. Unless you are either making news or providing original commentary on something please do not Stumble the article.
If you read something cool on Kotaku and you are blogging about it, (but adding nothing to the discussion) don't Stumble it. If you are adding more to the discussion than the original source then you can feel free to Stumble it.
- Make sure I see content when I visit the site - Too many blogs believe that shoving all of the advertising "above the fold" will result in more clicks. It will, but not the sort of click you want. When I come to a page that is all ads and the content requires scrolling down to reach I will thumb it down sight-unseen. I don't care what you are writing about, my time is like money and if I have to scroll down past a bunch of Google ads to get to it I will thumb you down and move along.
Take a quick peek at the big news sites, do they do that? No, they shove their advertising all over the place but the content is above the fold.
- Don't copy - This goes along with the first point. Nothing makes me thumb down a site faster than reading something that is just copied from somewhere else. I have no love for plagarism or lazy bloggers who just cut-and-paste a portion of an article and link back (or not) to the source. Please don't waste my time.
- Do try to be different - LOLCats are becoming old hat but, if you create a LOLCat that brings new life to the system I will thumb you up. For example, the SchrÃ¶dingerâ€™s Cat LOLCat "I'm in your box, maybe" (original image) was great and got an instant thumbs up from me. All those people who took the image and pasted it in their blog? They all get a thumbs down for copying.
- Spelling errors - Yes we all make mistakes sometimes but if you can not tell the difference between; there, their, and they're you should not be writing. Same goes for; begining, beginng, beginnign, etc... Please take a minute to run a spell check on your post.
That's about all I have for right now. Keep creating quality content and you too can gain thousands of hits a day via Stumbleupon. Create crap and you get nothing.
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