Yesterday, I began a discussion about BookVibe, a new service from data start-up Parakweet, that analyzes Twitter streams so that readers can discover new books to read.
Click here to link back to yesterday’s post to read the first 5 of 10 observations I’ve made as a new user of BookVibe. Tomorrow, I place 4 bets and make 2 predictions about the future of BookVibe.
Today, let’s look at observations 6-10:
(6) In your BookVibe stream (here’s mine if you want to see it), when you hover your mouse over the bottom of the rectangular tweet box you have the opportunity to thank the person who sent the tweet and the option to reply, retweet or favorite the tweet. This is good because it allows Tweeps and BookVibers to continue the conversation.
Now, this next feature has (strong) implications for authors:
(7) I found two interesting social media measures of influence (generated by BookVibe) listed in the top right corner of my tweets.
One was a five-start “social sentiment” rating system based on the average sentiment the book received over many recent tweets. The other, a “social buzz” indicator of high, medium or low based on the frequency of recent discussions on Twitter.
Which tells me this: By analyzing natural language, BookVibe is trying to determine (1) if a book is being spoken about favorably on Twitter and by analyzing tweets system wide, is trying to determine (2) how often a book is being talked about on Twitter. It also tells me that (3) the instincts listed in my second observation in yesterday’s post might be correct.
Implications for publishers and writers? Twitter may become more important when promoting a book. It may become more than making social connections and directing tweeps to blog posts. Now, you might consider ensuring your books are (1) being talked about (a lot) on Twitter and (2) being talked about favorably – with ‘feel the love’ keywords in the natural language of the 140 characters. You may also consider adding BookVibe to your list of social media sites to canvas each day/week to check your book’s status. (Now, I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking: Great. Another social media site to visit over morning coffee – now I’ll never get any writing done!)
(8) There are two options to subscribe to either a specific person on Twitter or click to receive book recommendations from “industry leaders” (industry leaders – whoever they are – gimme a break).
At first, I’m wondering if anyone’s really going to follow other people on BookVibe because who needs another “groupie” social media site (and by groupie I mean that crazy game we play to “like” each other on Facebook and “follow” each other on Twitter). And who wants another email to read in their inbox? Although, BookVibe tells me the once a week email I will receive will include book recommendations from people I follow on Twitter, so at least the email is somewhat catered to my activities.
In bold letters in the header of the BookVibe website is the sentence: “BookVibe helps you discover great new books by mining your Twitter stream.”
Are you thinking what I’m thinking?
What? Why do I want to discover books I’ve already tweeted about? Doesn’t that imply that I’ve already discovered them? If I’m missing something here, please leave a comment and enlighten me. (I think maybe that sentence is referring to the email they will send you once per week with book recommendations from the people you follow on Twitter. Maybe that sentence needs revision?)
I clicked on the “Explore” button at the top of the screen to explore other things besides myself – but that opens a window titled “Captains of industry: Explore what leaders in your industry are reading.”
Captains of industry?
OH, REALLY? Don’t we all know this is a window for paid advertisers in the publishing industry to push certain titles?
This should prove my point: The featured “captain’s bookshelf” on the Explore page today was none other than Dick Costolo. Who the heck is he, you ask?
He’s the CEO at Twitter.
Um. Hello?! BookVibe MINES tweets on Twitter. Self-serving?
(8) From what I can tell, as a READER, BookVibe is not yet able to aggregate a list of books in the genre I like to read so until then, perhaps, it won’t help me as a READER discover new books. If all they are doing is canvassing tweets from people I follow on Twitter – I follow a lot of writers in genres I don’t read very often.
(9) Publishers, authors and book bloggers should definitely keep an eye on BookVibe – and if BookVibe continues to build influence in social media as the “Twitter/Book” place – you better get another cup of coffee because you might find yourself spending more time on it.
Although, clearly, it’s still in its infancy so we should all be patient and watch as it develops. There was a time not too long ago (and many people still feel this way) when people would wonder why in the world they’d use a site that allows you to tell people what you’re doing in 140 or characters or less. And look at the impact Twitter has had on business and culture.
And my final observation:
(10) Maybe Paraktweet’s just waiting for either Amazon or Twitter to buy their BookVibe product line. After all, Amazon just bought Goodreads … wouldn’t BookVibe be a nice compliment to the Amazon empire? Maybe Twitter will develop its own product line that mines tweet content and then allows you to hit a button for a curated list of mined content …
My gosh, what Paraktweet does through its BookVibe product is take social media to the nano level. It’s kind of cool when you think about it. And certainly something to keep an eye on.
Click here to link back to yesterday’s post. Tune in tomorrow when I place 4 bets and make 2 predictions about the future of BookVibe.
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