Tuesday, 16 November 2010

Less is more when it comes to Path

New social photo sharing service Path has just launched amid a lot of social chatter and mixed, but largely positive reviews.

The big difference however with this service which is creating a lot of debate is the fact that Path is limiting friends to just 50, citing amongst other reasons, Dunbars law of social connections.  However the reason and the amount are irrelevant, what's interesting is the limit itself.

As every other service keeps on providing more, with email providers giving more storage, smart phones giving more apps, foursquare giving more badges and facebook just giving more of everything - it's strange to see a service setting limits.

On the surface their reasoning seems sound - this is a personal network for sharing photos with close and "real" friends.  The limit of 50 helps to reinforce this, meaning you can't simply import all your friends, followers and hangers on.  However, who's to say what a close friend is and how many of them you should have (ok, so Dunbar's 150 is probably about right), but in reality, this arbitry limit seems a little restrictive and big brotherish - a "we know best" mentality.

But it's none of these things - the limit of 50 friends is simply a gaming dynamic.

If you limit something, you create scarcity.  Scarcity means things are valued more.  Things which are valued more get used more and promoted more.

At a time when we feel everyone is a winner - with A grade exam pass rates seeming to ever increase and reward ceremonies giving a Gold for more and more obscure categories, it's nice to see someone saying no.

Scarcity can be a powerful mechanic and when worked well into a marketing programme can encourage increased engagement.  It can also be lost very quickly by making everyone a winner - this is a situation where you can't have your cake and eat it.

Not everyone can win Gold, not everyone can be Platinum tier and not everyone can be your friend.

I think Path is forcing users to make a choice on who the most valuable people are to them - and in turn are probably selecting the most valuable people to Path.

Creating scarcity can be a sure fire way of creating value.

2 comments:

Zhenhong Bao said...

michael kors handbags
celine outlet
michael kors uk outlet
asics,asics israel,asics shoes,asics running shoes,asics israel,asics gel,asics running,asics gel nimbus,asics gel kayano
tiffany jewelry
ferragamo shoes
versace sunglasses
tiffany and co
michael kors outlet
nike air max 90
longchamp solde
jordan shoes
tiffany outlet
beats by dre
rolex watches
oakley sunglasses
cheap jordan shoes
christian louboutin outlet
michael kors outlet
michael kors outlet
kate spade uk outlet
nfl jerseys wholesale
louboutin pas cher
fitflops shoes
cheap snapbacks
michael kors factory outlet
oakley sunglasses sale
cheap nba jerseys
gucci sunglasses uk
hollister clothing store
coach outlet online
reebok outlet store
michael kors outlet online
christian louboutin outlet
true religion outlet
20160514zhenhong

dong dong23 said...

ray ban sunglasses outlet
ray ban sunglasses
giuseppe zanotti sneakers
louis vuitton
louis vuitton outlet stores
michael kors handbags
michael kors uk
christian louboutin outlet
michael kors handbags
michael kors outlet
jordans for sale
coach outlet online
cheap nfl jerseys
gucci handbags
supra sneakers
kate spade outlet
longchamp outlet
louis vuitton
louis vuitton outlet
oakley sunglasses
louis vuitton outlet
timberland boots
michael kors handbags
christian louboutin shoes
vans shoes outlet
coach outlet
ray ban sunglasses outlet
louis vuitton outlet
louis vuitton outlet
ray ban sunglasses
true religion jeans
retro jordans
cheap jordans
gucci outlet
cheap jordans
fitflops
nike roshe run
adidas outlet
michael kors purses
supra shoes
20168.9wengdongdong