The social publishing site Scribd can serve two purposes for your blog. As a placeholder for your content and outpost for your blog. I started using Scribd because I was looking for something that can serve as a placeholder for data-rich real estate statistics for the consumption of then my first blog, Urban Trekker. At the time, Typepad didn’t have the tool that you can use to insert a document inside your blog. And if I use links, the blog outlived the links. Links generated by multiple listings only good for 30 days. After that it becomes a broken link.
So I learn to use Scribd. Think of Scribd as the long tail for blogging.
It’s easy to use. However, if you are not familiar with it, here’s how you can get started. Even if you don’t have an account set up yet, you now can upload, open your account on the fly and set up the account simultaneously.
According to the information on CrunchBase, “Scribd is the largest social and reading website. The company claims have more than 50 million readers every month and houses more than 10 million documents, including best-selling books, research reports, recipes, presentations, and more. More than 1.4 million searches happen on Scribd.com every day.”
Can’t ignore the big community over there.
What’s interesting about members of the community there is: they are “active” readers. They are not so much into making comments. They are more interested in reading.
You can see here from the homepage how the 67 documents I’ve uploaded read by 51,000+ readers and 1,200+ documents downloaded (below). People can also read documents on the go via their e-readers. So you capture audience that would normally “not” reading your blog. Online and offline.
Here’s what your dashboard look like:
Scribd is like your library where you can pick up books, drop off some books to give away and meet with other members – all at the convenience of your place. That’s basically how it works.
– You can add other people’s document to your collection (and share it with others).
– You can upload your documents and documents in the Creative Commons to your account.
– You can subscribe to other members’ collection and they can do the same.
Social media distribution channel
Here’s how you can triple dip your documents with Scribd:
Upload your documents to share, write a good description (like your 30 second pitch) about your documents and tag them. Keep in mind you want to upload documents that will enrich others with what you’re sharing. Not just a document, it should be in line with your branding. More importantly it should be of ‘valuable’ content.
Use ReadScan sparingly. ReadScan is the tool they have to automatically update what you’re reading across your Facebook and Twitter accounts. I say sparingly because if not, every time you go back in and out of reading a document – the scan will perform an update of that event. EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. It will be too much for your followers to digest..
– Become a resource for your blogging posts
Why not write a post about your document for your blog?
I did an experiment a few days ago. when I uploaded a document there and follow up with a write up. The number of readers at my account was up by 20 percent that day to 250 from the previous day. Not a big number. But, if you look at it from the time they spent reading, that translates to them hanging out longer at your Scribd’s site than reading your blog posts!
I know it’s a lot of work. But it’s worth it. Especially, after you write a summary about what you’re reading, you can either link back or embed it on your site. The embed doc gives your readers a reason to stay longer at your site. Try it…
– The shelf life goes beyond your blog posts
If you use social bookmarking. I don’t know what it is- I meant the technology behind this. I have a Feedburner account that links a couple of my blogs under ‘one account.’ Apparently Feedburner links all those blogs also with whatever bookmarks I have on Delicious. So subscribers of the blog gets content from Delicious along with my blog posts. Wonderful.
And if you’re you’re numbers, the stats would give you an idea of how many visitors read your documents every day. And you can even track it which documents get more clicks.
So not only your Scribd can be your part of your content strategy, but also an extension of your blog. The long tail of your blog that can help extend your reach. The longer the better.
I’m curious to know if you are a user, how does it work for you? Share your experience here in the comment section. Or if you aren’t a user yet, what are your thoughts?