Why I believe Squidoo has Potential

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Michael Arrington's post on TechCrunch, "Squidoo: Seth Godin's Purple Albatross?" got me thinking and I must say I agree with some of Michael's points but I also disagree with some of his others.

Michael states, "Squidoo is a mixture of evergreen (static) and refreshed content." I agree with this statement because as Michael suggests, after you create your Lens there is really no need to login back into your Squidoo account to make changes on a frequent basis. This lack of bringing the user back on a daily basis is one major reason why Squidoo will find it difficult to take off. MySpace is a perfect example of a site that successfully intrigues their members to log into their account on a consistent basis... for many members, that's almost every single day.

I agree, this is a big problem for Squidoo. But after some intensive testing with my Squidoo accounts, I began to see the potential here. With some much needed changes to their site and back-end account section, I truly believe that Squidoo could be a great resource for just about anyone looking to increase the exposure of their business, make a few extra dollars on the side, or simply help out one of the Squidoo partner charities organizations.

Why I believe Squidoo has Potential

If we take a look at the Squidoo website, what is it? It's a place where any user can create a page, or Lens as referred by Squidoo, on just about any topic imaginable. Each Lens contains is a set of modules that are composed of links, information, Amazon products, e-Bay products, iTunes songs, RSS Feeds, and much more. All of these modules make up content elements. As we all know content is the key to success on the Internet. With good quality content, a website will be sure to find success in the search engines.

Each Lens on the Squidoo website is in relation to a specific topic. And each of the modules on that Lens, generally relate to the topic being depicted. With this concept, each Lens has a great chance to have good-quality content because each of the modules are providing semantic keywords that relate to the main topic of that Lens, a concept that could really become popular with the major search engines. Most of the major search engines will look for semantic keywords on each page and rank that page on whether the content is good or not.

So in my mind, they have the content portion down and seem to be continually integrating with other companies as to create more module choices for their members to interact with. Currently there are approximately 50,000 members and approximately 100,000 Lenses. If Squidoo could acquire a few hundred thousand active members, then I'm confident that their site could become a content powerhouse.

But let's go back to Michael Arrington's TechCrunch article and talk about his concern of how the site does not intrigue their members to login and update their existing Lenses on a consistent and frequent basis. Currently as I stated above, there is really no reason to log back in and update your Lens once it has been created, unless of course I wanted to create a new Lens on a different topic. But what if Squidoo turned into some type of social networking community? Let's just imagine for a second that if I, as a member of Squidoo, had the ability to login and tag other member's Lenses, comment on their Lens, create a personal page with pictures and videos, manage a personal blog, interact with other members in some other means, and change the look-and-feel of each Lens page with different colors, fonts, css styles etc...?

Wow, now we're talking!

Basically what I'm suggesting is if Squidoo took the concept of MySpace and wrapped their Squidoo model around that then I believe there would be a reason for me to login everyday and update my Lenses. The concept of Squidoo is cool and intriguing; however, if they were able to accomplish the social networking community side of things then I believe that would supply Squidoo with tremendous value.

I give Seth Godin lots of credit. He went out on a limb here and created something that, in my mind, has potential. Many I'm sure will disagree with me on this, but I don't think people are thinking outside the box as Seth has on this one. As with all new sites, it takes time and good feedback from active members to make it better and fix things that need to be fixed. From what I've been reading from the past several months, it seems that Squidoo is constantly improving its services for its members, something that is worth taking notice.

We all know and respect Seth from his writings and his books, my favorite being his new one, "Small is the New Big". So instead of bashing Squidoo for what it does not have, let's give Squidoo a chance to grow and evolve into something that is has the potential to do. I'm just waiting for the day when I'm logging into Squidoo to message my friends, update my blog and comment on a few Lenses.

 

Daryl H. Bryant is President and Chief Executive Officer of Hudson Horizons, helps his clients achieve online success through search engine marketing and customized website solutions.

 

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