Explaining Digg to Clients and Newbies Alike

In the world of social media, Digg is a behemoth. A hot Digg submission is capable of generating tremendous volumes of traffic and links – so much so that many sites experience the “Digg Effect” for the first time and crash under the strain of the traffic.


That said, Digg can be a very important component of many social media and search campaigns. But, how can you possibly explain the Digg concept and its implications to clients who still haven’t really acknowledged the Internet as anything more than a passing fad?

Digg is Like a Newspaper
Think of Digg as a newspaper … though not for a specific region, but rather for the entire English-speaking world. This of course means there are thousands, if not tens of thousands of stories submitted daily.

Newspapers have different sections; Business, Sports, Lifestyles, Technology, and so forth. So too does Digg. It has:
a. Technology
b. World & Business
c. Science
d. Gaming
e. Lifestyle
f. Entertainment
g. Sports
h. Offbeat

Within each section, there are subsections. These are needed to manage the sheer volume of news and information, and help people search by core interests.

The Organization of Stories
Democracy meet editorialization … readers are the editors! Unlike traditional newspapers, where front page news is determined arbitrarily by editors at the paper, Digg-type sites permit voting on each story. Stories with the most votes by readers in each section or subsection move progressively nearer the front page of the section or subsection, with the most popular appearing in the best positions. Ultimately, stories with very large numbers of positive votes will be moved to appear on the main page of Digg, which is equivalent to appearing on the front page of a newspaper.

The Reporters
While traditional newspapers often have reporters trained in the art of journalism creating their content, Digg-type sites do not. Stories (news, humor, and educational types) are found across the web, and are submitted by everyday people. Some of these stories will inevitably come from newspapers, but also from blogs, videos found on video sites, and images found virtually anywhere online. This is very interesting though, as it means Joe Average Blogger now has an opportunity to experience the benefits traditionally reserved for the biggest companies. What can follow is exceptional traffic, branding, and numerous relevant links.

As a result, clients need to be involved in the content creation process, or at the very least, willing to adopt a content-centric strategy. Do so, and your chances of winning online increase exponentially.

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