If you’re a digital marketer, chances are you’re familiar with the block-headed cartoon character, holding an equally blocky shovel. This little guy (or girl) is of course the famous icon of Digg—an online news aggregator that has roots which predate Reddit and go as far back as 2004.
Digg’s claim to fame is that it came onto the Internet scene at a time when social media sites were still young, and its main function—the discovery and sharing of great content—heavily influenced the way social platforms evolved. The way users interact with Digg is also very simple, and has only added to the site’s popularity. The company employs editors who are tasked with finding the most interesting and highest-quality content that the Internet has to offer. This content is then aggregated into links and packaged on the Digg website. If a user likes a certain story they “digg it” by clicking the “digg” button. Articles that have more diggs get more visibility and vice-versa.
This model of sharing information has made Digg an important resource for any digital marketer. Simply put, if you have a piece of content that you’ve created to draw more traffic back to your website, you’ll want it to appear on digg and get lots of attention. This is how content goes viral, and where sites like Facebook and Reddit discovered how to provide a similar resource through their platforms.
Although Digg has in a sense been dwarfed by its social media competitors, the pioneer website is looking to be relevant online once more, and they’re doing so by providing their users with a new comments section interface that every marketer will soon want for their blogs.
This new interface is called Digg Dialog, and while it’s currently only available on the Digg site, there is no reason why this platform shouldn’t go the way of Disqus and provide their service to third-party sites.
What is Digg Dialog you ask?
Essentially Digg has taken the comments section which has come to define public discourse for Internet users, and made it more instant, valuable and inviting.
Since Digg isn’t a content generator, all of their content comes from third-party sites. When a story does well on Digg, the author and their publication benefit. However, Digg wanted to add more value to their site by finding a way for readers to directly engage with the author’s whose work they’re reading.
In Dig Dialog, Digg will invite author’s to answer questions about their work that users can ask in real time. These questions are moderated and will be subject to a few guidelines laid out by Digg to ensure conversations remain “civil”. The fact that these discussions can happen in real time, with new questions and comments popping into a news feed of sorts without the need to refresh the page, creates a more engaging environment for users.
Questions that the author has answered are then duplicated in an “answered” tab, for future enjoyment after the Live Dialog has closed. Finally, users can also “digg” interactions in these comment threads and those are then duplicated into a “most dugg” tab.
As any digital marketer will attest, comments sections can be a double edged sword. While they are perfect for facilitating engagement amongst your audience, they can also be a hot bed for negative comments, and worse, trolls. Digital marketers should consider working with their development and design teams to create a similar platform to Digg Dialog that would allow for engagement, real-time feedback from brands to consumers and discussions with near same value as the content itself.
Furthermore, with Digg Dialog, Digg has turned itself into another resource for syndication. This puts even more emphasis on strong storytelling in content marketing efforts, as this is really the only way to take advantage of what Digg has to offer.
Have some input on Digg Dialog, or how you plan on improving your comments sections? Let us know in the comments below.