I’ve said it before: Be the platform.
Rich Gordon has a lengthy, comprehensive essay that advises newspapers to be the network, not a destination. You must read the whole thing. It’s full of the right ideas.
Same thing. Different words.
I’m going to suggest a different approach: Instead of trying to build the best destination, build the best network.
The kind of network I’m referring to is a web of interconnections — links between content and between people. In essence, I’m arguing that on the Web, news organizations — perhaps, all media — should focus on building themselves “into the clickstream.” The goal: make your Web site a network hub that connects content and conversations.
If you’re not linking in, linking out, joining the conversation, telling people what’s good on the web, you’re making mistake.
Newspaper managers have traditionally believed they needed to build “sticky” sites and try to capture people and pretend the rest of the web doesn’t exist. That is a strategy doomed to fail. Only by being part of the clickstream can you hope to succeed.