Jwz, of former Netscape fame, has a pretty interesting post on his live journal page here: http://www.livejournal.com/users/jwz/444651.html
. I had actually sort of lost track of him, his www.jwz.org
site wasn't updated too much while he was doing the DNA Lounge stuff (www.dnalounge.com
) and I didn't know he had stuff on live journal. Some one over at the Joel on Software forum
linked to his live journal page.
The trick you want to accomplish is that when one person is using your software, it suddenly provides value to that person and their entire circle of friends, without the friends having had to do anything at all. Then, later, you pull the friends into the fold: if one of them starts using the software, they become their own hub, and get the benefit they have already witnessed from a distance.
Pretty obvious point actually. In order for what he calls 'social software' to really take off you need a way to make potential customers want to become customers just by seeing and reaping the benefits of the software that their friend is using. Make the software viral. One person starts using it, infects their friends, they start using it and they infect their friends and so on. Absolutely fundamental point. The trick for me is how to get this to work with fitness software.