Since everyone is using Steemspectacles.com again and throwing up arms as a case for Steem not doing well enough to engage, I thought I would add my 2 cents in also. I actually think that it is pretty healthy looking.
Here is mine:
Steemspectacles looks back 100 posts which for me is, a little over 3 weeks. This means that about 10% of my followers have engaged in some way (vote/comment) on one of my posts in that time. People seem to think that that is something to be worried about but like @denmarkguy mentioned a few weeks ago in regards to on of his old blog spaces, interacting with 2-300 engaged followers is a near full-time job. It really doesn't take too many comments to be overwhelmed and on many days, I spend as much time commenting as writing and I write a lot.
So, in my view, a ten% engagement rate with followers is pretty decent.
Ghost followers are the 90% who don't engage but again, this isn't too much of a problem in my view. For those who are avid consumers of a platform like Youtube, tell me, how many clips do you watch and, how many do you comment on? What about Reddit, Instagram or Facebook? As you scroll through your list, how many do you actually interact with? It is likely much, much lower than you think.
And then, how do you engage? Is it a like, heart, star or is it a comment? Is that comment a well rounded response or, is it a nice pic kind of deal? The way we interact with each other here tends to often be in a more time consuming way then we do in other places, which to me makes sense considering there is opportunity to earn through interaction.
Dead followers. Hmmm. Looks bad. Just think about all of these people who came here and then disappeared. Weeeeeeellll, yes and no. I scrolled through the list quickly and there are a few people who I recognized, were active and disappeared but, these were far, far fewer than the ones who never engaged, hardly posted or are resteem services seems quite high.
One thing that people very rarely factor into the churn rate is just how many accounts are alt accounts that have been started but, have fallen into disuse. Many people have multiple accounts that for whatever reason they intended to use for something but, never really did. They might have lost interest or, their main account took the bulk of their time until the alt just became a burden. The estimate is that there are 60,000 active accounts on the platform and I would suggest that most of those have more than one account themselves.
I have a couple disused myself. The last post on my @taraz account which was meant to be for short form was six months ago. Why? Well, it just wasn't really my thing so I stopped posting there. I might pick it up again one day but right now, it isn't the time.
Then there are all the people who stopped posting because of price drops. It just wasn't worth their time anymore. That is fine too because it leaves a little more in the pool for those who still thought it was worth their time to be here. Of course, there are many who might have come in and just not been able to make it here, that happens too but there seems to be some expectation that everyone will earn and many will earn well.
People compare this place to other typical social media as if it is a good comparison but, it is not because of the money involved. Other platforms that don't pay like Facebook means that everyone makes it, there is no barriers to 'making it' because there is no return for most users. Everyone is a a winner. Or, a loser depending on how you frame it.
Other monetized platforms are likely to suffer the same state as Steem in many ways as those who actually earn highly are a very narrow subset of the actual user base and, those who engage aren't much wider. I don't know what a "Clap" gets you on medium but the lead story on their front page has 1000, the next had 390.
Featured for members (I wasn't signed in and haven't been for 4 years I think).
How many dead users are on Medium? How many users come across articles randomly from medium (shared on FB for example) but don't actually engage? Is engagement on Medium truly any better than here or any other platform or, is it the same 10% of engaged users doing the bulk of the work. Most likely, the Pareto Principle comes into play.
It is interesting to think but look at my numbers.
4968 followers | 4459 ghost | 2095 dead
4459 ghost - 2095 dead = 2364
4968 follower - 2095 dead = 2873
2364/2873 = 82%
So, engagement on the last 100 posts has come from 18% of my followers. Add in the people who engage but don't actually follow me and, Pareto principle seems to be in play. My account here is likely one of the more engaged when it comes to volume but isn't large enough to get all of the trending hanger-ons who follow 50k accounts. I would say that the larger accounts aren't representative because they attract nothing followers who follow fame and trending, not to engage with them though. This pushes up their body count.
@meno is another engaged but younger account with a bit less SP:
3075 followers | 2591 ghost | 1086 dead
2591 ghost - 1086 dead = 1505
3075 followers - 1086 dead = 1989
1505/1989 = 75%
So, engagement for @meno is better than mine at 25% but, he also has less dead followers. What could cause this?
25819 followers | 23857 ghost | 14588 dead
23857 ghost | 14588 dead = 9269
25819 followers - 14588 dead = 11231
9269/11231 = 82%
Hmm.. pretty interesting right? So, acidyo and I have the same engagement rate with our followers even though he has a hell of a lot more and earns more and has more SP . @meno performs a little better but, having a younger account hasn't "collected the dead" yet. Don't worry @meno, you will get there one day ;)
The thing is that there are many dead accounts that likely overlap here (@acidyo probably has all the dead of @meno and I combined) and many of them are accounts that were never created to really engage, they never really had a chance of anything other than dying either for their purpose of creation or, the way they were managed.
But, the Pareto principle is important to engagement and the ideas of mass adoption. There are a about 1.2 million registered accounts on Steem but, the estimate is 60,000 active. Take away the alts, the multiples, the batch streams of accounts used to abuse the Steem faucet and create curation bots, what is left. How many individuals have actually signed up for Steem and, how many are left. I would predict that out of the 60k active, 30% are likely nonsense bots or resteemers so, that leaves 40,000. If we estimate that 200,000 real people signed up, that leaves us with 20% of them still active. I can't confirm this of course.
Dead accounts on a platform that many believed they would be able to become rich on because of some Youtuber suting BS is bound to suffer from many dropouts once the actual work volume needed is recognized. The reality of the other platforms when it comes to monetization sets the odds of earning well in favor of Steem as a social platform. But, no one here is going to earn like pewdiepie or whatever that douche's name is. At least not yet. Come 100 dollar Steem though and that might be a very different picture.
The older the account, the more dead it collects. The more SP the account, the more dead it collects. It is pretty obvious why SP attracts those who wind up dead because they have come here to earn and many believe that following SP around is the way that happens. No, engagement is the way that happens, at least for newer users coming on who aren't buying in large amounts.
There is also the Pareto investment problem here. People are worrying about the dead. Don't, worry about the living. Rather than spend time working out why those accounts died, spend time working out why the engaged accounts didn't. It is pretty obvious really because when it comes to survival of humans, connection is where it is at. What that means is that our survival depends on the communities we build and interact with, the relationships we form. The dead accounts for one reason or another have isolated themselves, lost connection and for the vast majority of them, likely never looked for it, let alone worked for it.
At some point perhaps, there will be a great pyre built and in a hardfork, all of the dead accounts will be burned along with whatever SP they may hold. and the system can somewhat reset as well as have a whole lot of cool names returned to the pool of possibility.
For now though, stop investing into dead bodies and instead find live ones that you are willing to engage with and build the kind of relationships with so that they are part of the community instead of becoming wraiths. I would predict though that lots of the dead were never mortal to begin with.
If you don't get the reference of the title, I am a Monty Python fan:
User retention is an important factor of all platforms but in the early days, rarely is the platform suitable for everyone to find a place, it takes a lot of work that many aren't wanting to do. When it comes to a platform that offers rewards and has a proven track record despite content quality, it is going to attract a massive amount of fortune seekers from all over who offer little but expect a lot in return and these types will get disillusioned very quickly.
Yes, there are some people who tried, pushed hard, attempted things and still failed but, this is also par for the course when it comes to platforms and businesses of all kinds. Not everyone can succeed and not everyone will put their effort into the right areas for a chance of success. The best idea that someone might have could fail miserably in the wild no matter how much time, effort and love they put into it. The business world is scattered with the broken bones of lost dreams.
There are a growing number of interfaces, Dapps, initiatives and communities that will improve the retention rate in time as they will lower the barriers to feeling a part of this place, they will open new avenues to interact and, have some SP behind them to reward something to those who take part. All of this takes time and effort to build and, it takes an engaged community willing to do it. I don't spend too much time worrying about the dead as if it is possible, it will be the living who make this place work.
[ a Steem original ]