Larry BraunerNetworkedBlogs is a Facebook application, which syndicates blog content and networks blogs to help them gain followers and readership on Facebook.

What blogger would not want to tap into Facebook, the networking giant, to grow his or her blog? That was the allure of NetworkedBlogs for me.

NetworkedBlogs Facebook ApplicationNetworkedBlogs has simplified my Facebook syndication to a small extent. However, despite building a large presence on NetworkedBlogs, integrating my blog with Facebook in this manner has resulted in few new readers.

Here are seven reasons for my disappointment with the NetworkedBlogs Facebook application:

  1. Many of my NetworkedBlogs followers are following my blog only because the NetworkedBlogs application asked them to do so at the time they followed another blogger’s blog covering the same topics. They have little interest in reading my blog.
  2. Only a small percentage of users visit the NetworkedBlogs Home Page regularly or at all to see their NetworkedBlogs News Feed. Many users don’t even realize the importance of the NetworkedBlogs Home Page. NetworkedBlogs needs better instruct users, so that users will get more out of this potentially useful Facebook application.
  3. I, like most bloggers, post at most a few articles per week. However, the top blogs on NetworkedBlogs are group blogs with many articles per day, thereby dominating the News Feed on the NetworkedBlogs Home Page. NetworkedBlogs needs to adjust its algorithm to compensate for the disproportionate number of articles generated by group blogs.
  4. Moreover, on the NetworkedBlogs Home Page, the News Feed is not sequential. Instead, it gives the highest-rated blogs priority, just as the Facebook News Feed gives priority to the most relevant posts, based upon each post’s Facebook EdgeRank. Because most people follow top blogs on NetworkedBlogs, they’ll infrequently be shown less popular blogs. Networked blogs needs to modify its algorithm to display a greater number of lower-rated blog posts.
  5. People tend to follow many blogs they have little interest in reading. This too diminishes the usefulness of the NetworkedBlogs News Feed and its perceived importance, as well.
  6. Facebook greatly limits that which the NetworkedBlogs application can do on our behalf. NetworkedBlogs cannot create user notifications as it had been able to in the past. Therefore, NetworkedBlogs needs to be extra creative in order to increase user engagement with the application and its content.
  7. NetworkedBlogs users, including myself, aren’t proactive enough to compensate for the shortcomings of the NetworkedBlogs Facebook application. How we can use NetworkedBlogs more proactively and productively will be the subject of a future article, which I plan to call The NetworkedBlogs Challenge.

Before you comment on this post, please “like” my Facebook page and follow me on NetworkedBlogs. ;-)

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17 Responses to “7 Reasons for Disappointment with Facebook’s NetworkedBlogs Application”

  1. John Wheeler on October 24th, 2010 10:12 pm

    Great insight. With the recent revalation that Digg is stumbling (there’s a tiny pun intended) - it seems that a some of the Web 2.0 sites are not living up to their initial promise. I think networked blogs is one of those sites.

    Networked Blogs could be an awesome site and a great place to get news and information, however, it’s not doing as well as it could because people don’t know about it.

  2. Larry Brauner on October 24th, 2010 10:36 pm

    And don’t understand it, John. See also Why Social Media Doesn’t Work.

  3. MKWeb on October 25th, 2010 12:21 am

    Great insight Larry,

    The same could be said of many tools online today. With so much information at our fingertips, it is tough at times to take the time to sit down and read what all the bells and whistles can and will do for us.

    With the rumors going around that Facebook may soon be removing the App tabs completely, makes one wonder if NetworkedBlogs will be among those to go by the wayside or will it stand on it’s own (which I feel it could do quite easily).

  4. Waleed on October 25th, 2010 1:08 am

    Larry,

    This is Waleed from NetworkedBlogs. Thanks for the post. I agree with you on most of the points, and we’re working hard to address them.

    The root causes of most of the issues you mentioned boils down to: algorithm, engagement, and Facebook limitations.

    1. Algorithm: We’re planning a major change there. Not only the algorithm, but the user experience for reading news. It’s due for a major revamp.

    2. Engagement: Will be addressed in part in point 1, but we’re also improving our communication using email. Today, a subset of our users receive emails when they get new followers, and we’re expanding that. Also, soon users will be able to choose to receive emails when blogs they follow publish new content.

    3. Facebook Limitations: This is a hard one, but we’re trying to work around it with other means.

  5. Fiona Bosticky on October 25th, 2010 4:44 am

    All the good things Networked Blogs tries to do, is dimished by all the good things they don’t do.

    I really like the concept, and it really could work a lot better. Thanks for bringing this up Larry.

    Also I tried to tweet this post, but I couldnt find a twitter sharing button… :(

  6. Stephen G. Barr on October 25th, 2010 6:04 am

    Your blog is far and away the best on social media out there in my opinion Larry. Another thing readers can do is go to your networked blogs page and invite 16 of their friends who they know are interested in social media. I just did!

  7. IngridK on October 25th, 2010 11:12 am

    The main hub is pretty useless, but I like this app. After a few hiccups, it seems to be working well in that it allows me to import the RSS of multiple blogs in my stream and post them to my personal wall and to any pages I run. It presents my blog feeds attractively, with thumbnail images and it does drive traffic to my personal sites.

  8. Coach Debbie on October 25th, 2010 11:14 am

    Thanks for grabbing our attention, Larry. Now you have us sitting on the edge of our seats. Hurry and post your NetworkedBlogs Challenge.

    Celebrating You!

  9. Chuck Bartok on October 25th, 2010 12:12 pm

    Larry,

    Your points are very valid.

    The one feature I do like is the posting to Update when Blog Post Published, similar to the Blog Broadcast Feature at Aweber.

    I know you have seen our NETWORKED BLOG system, which in its first 2 months has propelled subscribers blogs to high ranking and Keyword strength on Search Engines.

    We now have 20 unique Niche Domains and still adding more.

    The set Wordpress system is Loaded with Premium Plugins and our Tutorials are detailed.

    Your blogs do get exposure and reading with Networked system.

    Keep up the good work

  10. Larry Brauner on October 26th, 2010 12:23 am

    @MKWeb NetworkedBlogs has moved to the Home Page navigation pane.

    @Waleed Thank you. I like your #2. Perhaps more training or a user guide could be added to the list.

    @Fiona Thank you. For future reference, you can use the share widget.

    @Ingrid @Chuck Thanks for your input.

    @Debbie Flattery will get you everywhere. :P

  11. Get MORE from Networked Blogs on Facebook | Abnormal Marketing on October 26th, 2010 1:18 pm

    […] some time, and I have really started to question its value.  I read a post by Larry Brauner called 7 Reasons for Disappointment with the Facebook NetworkedBlogs Application, and it got me thinking about the problems with this application.  I decided to take a new […]

  12. kelly on November 9th, 2010 12:15 pm

    I can’t get Networked Blogs Code to be verified via my self-hosted domain. My other alternative is to ask friends on Facebook to verify that I am the owner of my blog. I didn’t bother to ask. But I will try the code again in near future.

  13. Ryan on December 12th, 2010 11:27 pm

    I’ve never been a big fan of NetworkedBlogs and up until Waleed’s reply I always thought the algorithm was tilted the way it was because the group blogs with more articles x more followers would lead the results to provide more potentially viral articles (over unproven submissions).

    The real problem I have though with apps and facebook though is that people can block entire applications from their wall. Ping.fm, TweetDeck, even NetworkedBlogs…

    So if someone fires up an autoblog, games a facebook script, and hammers their duped followers your blog posts updates won’t be seen since they are delivered by a 3rd party such as NB.

    I guess the other thing would be that if you’re going to create a piece of quality content, you should share it in a social way. The use of third party apps just has that ‘phoning it in’ quality.

    All the abusers online use these tool for leverage, and I think that association continues to grow.

  14. Bob Garon on April 5th, 2011 2:16 pm

    My question is how well the NetworkedBlogs syndication shows up in the Facebook news feeds? Essentially what I’d like to know is if my friends will see the NB auto posting in their news feed better than or the same as if I manually posted the link on my wall?

    I was told from someone in SEO that auto blog posters such as NB do not show up well in both Facebook search as well as their news feed lineup.

    Thanks!
    Bob Garon

  15. Larry Brauner on April 5th, 2011 3:09 pm

    I’d tend to agree that it probably doesn’t do as well in the news feeds, if you’re someone whose post tend to score well on EdgeRank.

    The automation of NetworkedBlogs, and the ability of followers to permit publication of your posts on their walls could make up for such a deficit.

  16. Nomad on February 29th, 2012 2:46 am

    I am also rather disappointed with NetworkedBlogs. I have installed in two different blogs and it always starts ok but then about a day after installation there’s a vague error message. (Not properly installed) After repeated attempts, I finally gave up. And like most “help” sections, the help section of NetworkedBlog is just a small forum of people who have the same problems complaining and nobody there with any real knowledge actually helping.
    To me that’s what brings so many good ideas down to the dust. No follow up after its release.

  17. Sarah Nicolas » Blog Archive » Do We Need a GFC Replacement? on March 6th, 2012 3:25 pm

    […] only see it IF they go to their networked blogs feed – which is troublesome for many reasons. See this article for more information about this […]

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