Discover StumbleUpon: A Random Social Platform

Feb 11, 2014
Jason Baumann


Today we are going to talk about one of the most unique social media platforms around. In fact, for a long time, I wasn’t exactly sure if it was a social media site, a search engine, a website or something else. Even today, I am not completely sure how I wanted to classify it. But for fun, I thought I would talk about it in today’s blog.

I think the best description of StumbleUpon comes from Wikipedia calls it a content “discovery” engine. Users create profiles on their network and designate some broad areas that interest them. Then when they login, either on their mobile device or computer, StumbleUpon provides random content that fits into their criteria. Users can like and dislike content and those actions will greater define their preferences toward future content.

The numbers are pretty amazing though. Alexa, a company that provides industry-respected information about websites including top sites, internet traffic, etc., ranks StumbleUpon in the top 149 websites in the world. In fact, in the last 6 months, it is estimated that they receive between 22 and 24 million users per month in United States alone. As of June 2013,  StumbleUpon had 25 million registered users and has indexed more than 100 million web pages. The average user stumbles on 300 pieces of content and uses the service for seven hours each month.

So what does this mean for content marketers and those promoting their businesses? Well, if you are putting content out on the web, StumbleUpon can be a great tool for getting seen. You can easily submit content to be stumbled upon. You can also advertise with them through something they call “sponsored stumbles.” Their pricing structure is pretty easy. They charge a flat rate of $.05 per stumble.

One thing marketers may note is the discrepancy between analytics and their own dashboards when monitoring traffic. Because a large portion of StumbleUpon members use Firefox, many of them have added a NoScript add-on to their browser. This browser extension is one of the top-10 most downloaded among users, which allows them to browse with a better sense of privacy and security. As a result, tracking services are blocked.

The last unique feature of StumbleUpon is the feedback score, measuring ratios that indicate just how well the community has received your content. The higher the score, the better indication of a positive acceptance. Generally speaking feedback scores above 70%  are a good sign, and the score is measured by (thumbs-up/(thumbs-up + thumbs-down).

I think there is some value in StumbleUpon if you are putting out good content. It is relatively easy to add content (this article will be shared upon completion) and the numbers are there. As with all social media planning, you have to look at who your target market is and where they are spending their time.

NOTE: On the bottom of this page is a social sharing bar. If you would like to experiment with StumbleUpon, click on the icon and share this page. 

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