Make the Smithtown Howler Community Connection (almost) all yours

Part 3…

It goes without saying that an online product – in this case an online community “connection” – will be customizable. The question might be: To what degree?

Let’s suppose we want citizens of the burgeoning Smithtown Howler Community Connection to get what they need and want. Presumably our pre-interactive visitors have a predisposition toward an interest in our prepackaged local Smithtown news, so we continue to give it to them on part of the screen that we’ll consider sacred (since we don’t really want our brand customized out of existence).

Then we let the community replace our other standard mods – U.S., international, business news and so on – with news/info on the individuals’ favorite subjects.

The birds and the … butterflies

Take Don and Vicki Methwick (not their real names, not even real people). Don likes sports (the Hawkeyes, of course) and he even referees high school volleyball. He puts the Howler’s standard Hawkeye Sports mod in a prominent spot so he never misses a new video, live blog or webcast. He adds the local volleyball module written by coaches, players and fans and sponsored by Dave’s Sporting Goods. He also follows NASCAR, Danica Patrick and the stock market with some RSS feeds on the same page.

Vicki is more interested in local sightings of pileated woodpeckers, scarlet tanagers and Monarch butterflies, so she includes the Nature Notes mod that someone started. The ads alert her to sales at Chuck’s Lawn and Garden.

And so on. (Remember, I promised brevity.)

OK, what was the next key word on that list again? Oh, right: Engaging.

Coming soon, I think.

(As always, comments are encouraged and welcome. Be accountable; use your real name. Thanks.)

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