By Corinna Graham
The newest social media website to come out of Harvard is called newsle.com, and the purpose of the site is for the user to track people across multiple web outlets. Founders of the site, Jonah Varon and Axel Hansen, created the site so that people could keep tabs on friends or celebrities. Six weeks after it launched, the site had over 6,000 users tracking close to 2 million people.
The Boston Globe reported that newsle.com works by combining the functions of other social media websites such as Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Instead of having to go to each of these websites to look for someone, users can simply type one name into newsle.com and find news about that person from all over the web.
This summer, the two Harvard students will be in San Francisco, working on enhancing newsle.com. In addition to tracking friends and celebs, Varon and Hansen want users to be able to keep tabs on certain topics. In addition to tracking Steve Jobs or Paul Pierce, users will be able to track Macintosh in general or the Boston Celtics as a team.
The implications of a site such as newsle.com on marketing are clear. Newsle does something that any company trying to market its products or services should do: it cuts back on “content clutter,” and presents users with the information that is the most useful and relevant to their lives. It’s aggravating for consumers to search through a variety of websites, or to go through the various pages of one website, looking for the information they want.
Newsle can streamline information for consumers by providing convenient access through a user’s Facebook or LinkedIn account, as well as mine their user profiles to ensure that the search results are in line with their interests. If Varon and Hansen see their vision though to the next stage, Newsle will create opportunities for companies and products to target consumer groups in a better way and on an individual level as yet unachieved by other social networking sites.