I’m done with saying that a new social media site is “the next Facebook.” It’s time for us all to admit that nothing is ever going to beat Facebook for world dominance. Nope, no one. Not even Pinterest.
However, I am loving all of the new social networking sites that are coming out of the woodwork these days. There are some really interesting, innovative sites that, while they might not beat Facebook, are definitely carving out their own space in the social media world.
The key here is specialization. Facebook is like the WalMart of social media: you’ve got everything in one place. Personally, I’ve never really been much of a WalMart kinda gal; the big space and vast expanse of options freak me out. I’d much rather shop at a local mom and pop.
To push this metaphor a little further, let’s take a look at the latest corner store style social media site, Storylane. Between Facebook and the various blogs I read, I don’t honestly have time for another site that’s all about connecting me with other people, but this one seems like something special.
Updating the social media profile.
The biggest difference between Storylane and other sites like it is that your profile grows as you add stories to the site. How many times have you filled in the basic info of your name, your birthday, your job, and where you went to school? Like a million. And how many times have you actually read all of that information on a friend’s profile? Probably less than a hundred, and then only when you were looking for contact info or trying to learn more about the hottie you met at that cocktail party last week, right?
Well, on Storylane, they don’t ask you any of that stuff. You don’t even have to fill in your name because the only options for signing up are through Facebook or Twitter and they import that basic stuff for you.
Getting to know you.
Once that’s done, the site asks you what general topics you’re interested in, from fashion to “life” to sports to people. After you give them that tiny bit about yourself, they recommend people for you to follow.
Honestly, that’s the one part of my experience with this site so far that I wasn’t digging too much. Recommendations felt premature, considering I hadn’t written anything myself or given them more than the most basic information about who I am.
And now we get to my favorite part of the site: the stories. Storylane invites you to tell stories from your life to share who you really are. It’s the exact opposite of status updates and Tweets. While those sites give us an opportunity to share what’s going on in quick, real-time blurbs, Storylane encourages you to really get into the meat of things. If you can’t figure out where to start, the site also provides a variety of prompts to get the gears turning.
Keeping it interactive.
Once you’ve read a story, you can give feedback that’s way more extensive than the “like” button on Facebook. You can say whether the story moved you, whether you’ve been there yourself, whether you agree or disagree, to name just a four of the nine options. You can also choose to follow the author, keeping you updated on future posts.
I don’t know if it’s because I’m a writer or if it’s just who I am, but I love stories. I’m definitely that girl who will stay up all night talking about everything, only to go to bed when the sun starts rising. Storylane feeds that part of us that wants to connect with each other, in more than 140 characters.