Hsee-Zappos-Stober Link
Half the fun of sharing links might be tracking how many times they get clicked.  This post follows up on my Zappos mention and explains how a link shortening service like bit.ly might be helpful.

Link shortening got more prominent since 2006 when people started needing to cram links into Twitter messages, limited to 140 characters (this previous sentence is 137).  While bit.ly got my attention as the default shortener in Tweetdeck, anyone can shorten links instantly by visiting bit.ly.

For those who have not done so already, I recommend the following steps:
  1. Register for a free account at bit.ly
  2. Set up the Sidebar
  3. Optional for Tweetdeck Users: Configure Tweetdeck to recognize your new bit.ly account
I had taken these steps before tweeting Chris Hsee's article at Tony Hsieh on August 5th, which means I have some fun data to share about how my link circulated after Tony tweeted it.

As of August 27th:
  • 2,216 clicks on my link.  Some users manually removed my @adamstober name from their tweets but a significant percentage did not.
  • 64% of clicks came in the first 30 or so hours (word travels fast!)
  • 90% of all bit.ly clicks to the Hsee WebMD article were from the bit.ly link that I created and Tony Hsieh circulated -- bit.ly creates different short links to track clicks to the same webpage for different users.
To see additional link details and up-date-data and since August 27th, 2010, click here.

I thought "going viral" and being mentioned by one of the top 100 most followed people on Twitter might turn me into that poor kid in the UK who did not want the fame he got when Kanye randomly gave him attention on Twitter, but it did not.

I gain more Twitter followers and get more blog visits when I post about either to my Facebook account relative to the exposure outlined above.  In this instance the attraction was Hsee's research and Hsieh's opinion, not the guy who connected them: me!

Open note to bit.ly: I want better geographic data on where my clicks are going from.  If I have 32 clicks in the United States and 2 in Canada, that doesn't help me figure out where my clicks are coming from.

Where do I submit this photo for an award?
'You Know You Love It.' Navy Pier, Chicago, Aug 26. 2010. Photo by Adam Stober
Click here for full size picture.
7 clips that always make me laugh.  In no particular order:
  1. UAF Nanook Hockey Opener 07-08. Do NOT spoil this one by watching on a small screen or low volume. Go all out.  2 minutes.  PG.
  2. Strongbad makes a techno song.  1 minute. G.
  3. Fonejacker Mr Doovde . 2 minutes. PG.
  4. Fonejacker PS3.  2 minutes. PG-13.
  5. iPhone4 vs HTC Evo.  3.5 minutes.  R.
  6. Powerthirst.  1.5 minutes. R.
  7. Afro ninja.  1 minute includes 3 views :)  PG.
Special thanks to George, Jonny, and BramO for helping me dig these up over the years.

NOTE 9/1/2010: Removed Home office from hell #2075 since the YouTube is not working.  Argh.
NOTE 9/28/2010: Home office from hell #2075 is back up!  Bonus, check it out! 24 seconds.  G.
Click here for a tailor-made "starter bundle" of RSS feeds on technology, business, entrepreneurship (and one on the Chicago business scene).

This short post was inspired by a recent chat with a friend which made me realize that my original RSS feed article should have made starting with RSS feeds even easier.

I haven't used Zappos enough to give the service my seal of approval, although I really enjoyed reading CEO Tony Hsieh's Delivering Happiness earlier this summer and am happy to recommend the book.  Special thanks once again to Booth classmate The Vegan Republican for lending it to me!

When I saw this tweet from Booth Thinking about a new article by one of my favorite Booth professors, Chris Hsee, I thought it might be fun to tweet it at Tony, since I figured he would find it relevant.

I wouldn't expect someone with celebrity status like Tony to track their thousands or millions of mentions, but sure enough, he is on top of his stuff.  Tony re-tweeted the Hsee article, giving credit to me for finding it, to over 1.7 million followers.

For those who don't use Twitter but do use Facebook, this is similar to being tagged in a Facebook status post by a guy with 1.7 million friends.  One difference between Facebook and Twitter though, is that Twitter users are much more likely to re-post status messages of interest for all of their friends ("followers") to enjoy.  So if 150 of Tony's 1.7 million followers re-tweet the message with my name, and each has an average of 300 followers, and 50 of those re-tweet again, the message becomes "viral" and circulates widely across the internet.

For those who don't use Facebook, imagine the CEO of a billion dollar company emailed an article to almost two million people and thanked me personally for bringing it to his attention.

Given that some readers coming to my site today might be interested in Behavioral Economics as well as the Internet I am publishing my best paper from Professor Hsee's Managerial Decision Making course for anyone interested.  My paper relates "the twenty dollar bill auction" to the "escalation of commitment" phenomena and links them both to "entertainment shopping" websites like Swoopo.com, and is included below.  To this day I argue that if casinos and lotteries and online poker sites are regulated as gambling, Swoopo should be too.

File Size: 129 kb
File Type: pdf
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    Adam Stober

    Inspiring novice and intermediate internet users to enjoy the best free or inexpensive products and services all across the Internet


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