Rediff has launched a twitter-like product called Zarabol that works just like Twitter. That is, you share your updates (140 chars), follow people and topics (#hashtags).
Given that quarterly results are to be announced very shortly, I’d assume that Rediff has got something new to talk to its shareholders. Otherwise such products add no value, especially when Rediff has no social graph and engagement is more via comments (on articles) and not within users.
Aside, its a sweet coincidence that Rediff earlier had an IM product called Bol (which was inspired by Yahoo/ICQ chat service) and Zarabol is ofcourse, inspired from Twitter – i.e. move along with the times.
Rediff: The Rising Traffic (?)
And while you thought that Rediff is on a decline (mind share: yes, traffic:?)? Take a look at the latest UV (Unique Visitors) chart
What Rediff has done right is creation of semi-porn/crunchy sites (like Bigg Boss5, Vidya Balan’s Photos (Dirty Picture), Kareena Kapoor Photos etc etc) – which helps the site with a lot of SEO. Unlike ‘content farms’ like In.com, Rediff has taken a (proxy) UGC approach (though be assured that a lot of updates on these SEO-driven pages is coming from company’s editorial team) to increase site activity.
The big jolt, as far as Rediff is concerned – came not so much from a single competitor as it came from the fact that users moved away from portals altogether.. In other words, Rediff, which has tasted success earlier being “India’s Yahoo”, now was caught in the trap of trying to emulate what the Yahoo’s and Google’s of the world were doing. Unfortunately for them, Yahoo, like Rediff, was fighting its own battles anyhow, and Google could afford some experiments on the back of its search success – a luxury that Rediff hardly had. It is not that none of the product ideas above had merit, or should have not been attempted. Its just that as a company, there seemed to be a lack of direction, or coherent strategy