Social media & networking, Software & web applications

How can I use del.icio.us for my organisation?

This post is the third in a series: Part 1: What is del.icio.us?, Part 2: What makes del.icio.us a "social" bookmarking tool?.

The most basic way that del.icio.us can assist you in managing your bookmarks across multiple computers, or simply make it easier to find a bookmark through tags or search. But there are other ways you can use del.icio.us to support collaboration.

Share links with co-workers

If you have multiple people in your business that use del.icio.us, you can check out what your coworkers are linking to by checking their bookmarks page (you’ll need to know their del.icio.us username – then append it to the del.icio.us URL. For example, you can view my bookmarks at http://del.icio.us/grantyoung), or you could use the "for:" syntax to share links through del.icio.us, rather than sending emails.

You may instead want to simply all agree on a specific tag that you use when you want to share your links – then everyone can simply watch that tag – rather than having to use multiple "for:" tags to send to individuals.

For example, on the Uncensor project, the tech team have been using the uncensor tag to share links. You could use more obscure tag names – for example I might use “<organisation or project name>:team” (e.g. “zumio:team”) to share amongst people working in your team, or “<project name>:design” to share design related links.

Eavesdrop on conversations

You can monitor tags related to your area business to get insight into what’s happening online, and even watch tags related to your business or product name. For example, to see what people are saying about Yahoo!, you can check the "yahoo" tag. Using an RSS news reader makes this even easier to check as each tag page has its own RSS feed. You can use this as a form of market research – seeing who’s linking to you, and what people are saying about your business or product(s). (You can do similar sorts of research with blog trackers like Technorati or Google Blog Search, but that’s a topic for another post…)

Project-specific link sharing

If you are running an event (like a conference), you can suggest that people tag their links with a specific tag related to the event. For example, the organisers of the Web Directions conference suggested that participants use the "wd07″ tag. (You can do the same for other popular services like flickr and YouTube.)

The same approach applies to more general projects as well. Come up with a tag that you all use for your project and start sharing.

Add links to your blog or website

You can also share your links via your website or company blog – there are a number of widgets and tools for various blog tools (like WordPress) that allow you to add your del.icio.us links to your site’s sidebar.

You could use such a widget to link to reviews of your product(s), to sites related to your area of business – to any site that you think might be of interest to your target audience.

There are other tools like Postalicious that will take a daily snapshot of your del.icio.us links and post them to your blog (that’s the plugin I use here on zum.io). Some tools also allow you to specify a specific tag to link to so you can target specific links to specific blogs/sites.

And more?

I’m sure there are plenty of other ways del.icio.us can be used – leave a comment if you have a suggestion…

One thought on “How can I use del.icio.us for my organisation?

  1. Great series, Grant! I just wanted to say that for me, delicious didn’t make sense until I installed the Firefox Plugin, which has a few significant bonuses:

    1) Your bookmarks are available from every computer with the plugin installed (and via http://del.icio.us if it’s not installed)

    2) The ‘add bookmark dialog’ dialog means you don’t have to leave the site you’re on to bookmark it – it auto-suggests and autocompletes tags that you are likely to use.

    3) You can search your bookmarks, and notes and titles from within the browser.

    For what it’s worth, I also subscribe in Google Reader to the del.icio.us RSS feeds for everyone in my network, and for links for me.

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