After the first post about features that LinkedIn or any other business social network group implementation should have, I will talk about how users use those groups what they need to find and get from there.
As you know, nowadays there are lot of applications (web apps and desktop apps) built based on great ideas, with fantastic features. But as you also know sometimes those great ideas are not well developed and users get some features they will never use and they don’t get some features they really need. I mean applications are built based on ideas without thinking about how will users need this idea to be built.
In my career I’ve seen quite a lot of groups’ websites and I think all of them have some important defects. Some of them don’t let users make a search, others don’t let look for members, some others don’t have the chance to export things from inside the group, others just don’t focus the navigation correctly and others just don’t let users search in other way than keyword search.
I think users using a group website not only need to have features I mentioned on the MMLFG #1 but also have some chances to get or find specific staff on the forum. Focusing especially on business social networks groups like LinkedIn groups I think users will need good ways to find topics (questions and/or answers) that:
- match specific keyword search.
- asked/answered by your connections.
- with more than certain number of answers (popular topics?).
- asked/answered today.
- asked/answered by some people you are interested in.
- tagged by you before.
As a conclusion, with advanced search possibilities like the ones I mentioned above and some others someone will need, I think users will for sure use those groups not only because they are interested in the topics groups cover but also because they can find and get what they really need. Advanced Search let users don’t waste time and look just for the information they want.
As a final word, if we make a last little effort then it would be great if we can save those advanced search we usually do for later use, and then just execute them.
On the next MMLGF post I will talk about “Exporting information and generating alerts from LinkedIn Groups”. Hope you go on reading me and please just leave any comment you want so I know what you are expecting from this MMLGF series.
This is post #2 of the (M)aking the (M)ost of (L)inkedIn (G)roups (F)unctionality (MMLGF) Series.