David Mills, business growth strategist for Story Collaborative, discusses the origin and purpose of Story Collaborative’s Fredericksburg-based subsidiary, Lamppost (www.lamppost.social) and the company’s use of the .SOCIAL domain extension in this week’s My Side of the Dot™.
Where are you based?
We’re based in Fredericksburg, VA about 40 miles outside of Washington DC.
When and how did Lamppost get started?
So many of our clients, corporations and large nonprofits were having challenges managing their social presence—both publishing and listening/responding. We wanted a way to help them that included the ability to collaborate internally and with our team. The products that offer this richer level of collaboration are expensive and some aren’t too elegant or easy to use. While Lamppost can automate social, we don’t encourage that; we think its real power is to personalize and speed up the response in the social arena.
What is your goal as a company?
Our goal as a company is to empower corporations and nonprofits to tell their stories effectively by integrating multiple content channels in a way that is personal and offers value to their target audience. For us, social is part of their larger conversation that is anchored on their website and has to be a part of a larger content strategy. We’re an inbound company and believe that the value of content is of the highest priority.
Tell me a little about the name Lamppost.
Lamppost was chosen to represent the kind of conversational tone that one might find in a small downtown, a kind of coffee shop experience, and the warmth that street lights offer in that setting. Since we’re the Story Collaborative, we wanted something that fits into this idea of story-based marketing.
What services does Lamppost offer?
Which service or function is the most popular? Lamppost offers a rich social media publishing and listening experience that is easy to use and has an elegant interface. It is integrated to our content publishing services and can be used for social campaigns or regular interactions. Lamppost integrates most if not all of the most popular social management tools that allow for collaboration, image management, and content sharing. It has a rich image manager built in, the ability for reputation management, and a content calendar and library.
What percentage of your new customers learn about you through your website?
Most of our customers, probably 80% find us through the website.
Can you speak to the challenges and possibilities that new technologies and third-party platforms present to businesses? Why is it challenging for businesses to keep up?
The biggest challenge is efficiency in your workforce. Does a new platform integrate well? Is the learning curve short? We’ve answered these questions in Lamppost.
How did you hear about .SOCIAL? Why did you decide to use .SOCIAL in lieu of .COM or another more traditional option?
In looking for the right domain name, we considered a .COM, but www.lamppost.com sells lights. Social made sense for us and we felt that the unique branding opportunity fit well with the tech and the service that we were going to provide.
Is there anything you’d like to add?
For most of our users, lamppost is integrated into their larger content strategy, their story, and that’s important to us.
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