Today is Posterous’s last day. Posterous started in July 2008 and was a great and easy way to share short-form blog content, and it rapidly became popular. In fact so popular that Twitter acquired it last year. This was clearly a technology and talent acquisition rather than a platform one, and so a little while ago the Posterous team announced the inevitable:
On April 30th, we will turn off posterous.com and our mobile apps in order to focus 100% of our efforts on Twitter. This means that as of April 30, Posterous Spaces will no longer be available either to view or to edit. – Thanks from Posterous
If you were a user of the platform, you actually have until May 31th to retreive your data, although best to get it now while you remember. It is fairly straight forward:
- Go to http://posterous.com/#backup.
- Request a backup (clicking “Request Backup” next to your Space).
- You’ll receive an email when it is ready.
- Go to http://posterous.com/#backup and download the .zip.
Importers are available for WordPress and Squarespace. If you used an earlier version of the WordPress importer, do check that your images were imported, not just hot linked, to avoid problems when Posterous finally shuts down. You can also migrate to Tumblr using Justmigrate.
This month, Yahoo! has also announced the closure of it’s Upcoming service. Consolidation and churn is not unusual in the Internet space, but the closures serve as a timely reminder: Who own’s the land (platform) under your building (content). Today Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest are all hot properties, and it makes good marketing sense to use them effectively. However, they are only part of your overall communication strategy. While it might not be as ‘sexy’, don’t neglect your own real-estate. Your company (or personal) blog is built on your land (if you own the domain name) and is far more durable. Before leaping on to any new platform, it is always best to check how ‘portable’ your investment is going to be, before ploughing days and hours into building and growing a presence on a platform that someone else is looking to monetise.
The latest Technorati Digital Influence report says “consumers are turning to blogs when looking to make a purchase.” – ranking blogs above other forms of social media. Your own blog remains a critical component in optimising your discoverability on-line (including via search engines). The last few quarters in the Social Media world have focused heavily on platforms, but it is content that remains key. By all means use other platforms, but think carefully about how they are supporting (or weakening) your owned spaces.
Platforms come and go, and any thing that wants to call itself a digital strategy (rather than a set of opportunistic tactics) must be designed to take that into account.