A couple weeks ago I had the pleasure of meeting the folks behind AideRSS, a truly amazing new tool for bloggers based in nearby Waterloo, Ontario. With AideRSS, you can just plug in the address of your blog and it tells you very quickly how much buzz you’ve generated. Think how useful this is: you can quickly determine who is saying what about you, where, and how much. Figure out at a glance what rocks your audience, and what bores them to death.
Give it a whirl. Here are a few examples:
|FreshBooksHear the Buzz!|
|37 SignalsHear the Buzz!|
|TechCrunchHear the Buzz!|
Ilya Grigorik and Kevin Thomason were kind enough to invite me into the beta last week, and I have been waiting impatiently for them to go public so I can tell you about it.
Well, this past Tuesday, they launched. So I want to highlight some things that are particularly awesome.
A masterpiece of clarity.
Nothing about AideRSS is confusing. Everything about it is charming. It didn’t take long before half the company were huddled around my desk looking out how our blog was performing. The essence of its appeal is that it doesn’t take more than 1 second for anyone to understand exactly what to do, and what it’s good for.
Start at the beginning.
Let’s start with the clean design of the front page. Look how well balanced it is. The elements on the page are well separated and obvious. The description of the product at the bottom is cleanly segmented into Features, Benefits, and Video tours. The call to action is obvious. Type a blog URL and click Analyze!
Where I spend too much time a day.
The analysis is clean, direct, and uncomplicated. First, they quickly segment the blog posts into quartiles, and they use nice, simple visual cues like the bolder the colour, the higher the quartile. Second, they make it easy to figure out which posts are outperforming others with their nifty sortable table. Third, their PostRank system is fantastic at quickly visually identifying which posts are hot and which are not.
Let’s hear that noise!
The real benefit is that AideRSS subscribes to all the services that track blog conversations, and then organizes them in a handy table. This saves so much time tracking down who is saying what about you, and where. In this case, it is showing comments on our own blog, and impact on Technorati, Bloglines, and Digg. Just click on the little logos to swim in the sea of buzz your latest musings on cat pictures generated.
Why it matters to me.
For someone who is entrusted with the health of the FreshBooks blog, AideRSS is really my new favourite tool. The cold hard reality of this gig is I need to demonstrate that we’re saying what people care about. While FeedBurner gives me readership, AideRSS measures impact, and that is powerful stuff.