Kristof has 145,979 fans on Facebook. He writes at The New York Times and he writes for his readers. He's humanizing his work by telling the stories of the people he meets through his personal lens.
And he's doing that in a conversational medium that allows his fans to interact with him however they choose to do it - by comments, likes, with images. It looks like he's using his Facebook page as a place to put his field notes to capture what interests him and what he's learning.
This is a great use of an interactive tool to build community around ideas and connections. A few things that caught my attention on the page that help interaction and engagement:
1. simple call to action - Fan Nick!
2. a specific tab for his upcoming book, Half the Sky
3. use of boxes to organize content on the page
4. use of teasers and puzzles to jump start a conversation
5. asking fans to vote for or pick something
6. use of video and photography - an image is worth a thousand words
7. the story behind the story - this is very compelling to readers
8. notes to articles written by others start good discussions
9. the idea that most of the material is real time appeals to online users
10. a short conversational bio with further links to his online presence
These may seem like very simple things to many of you. However, in the aggregate, they each contribute to readers building a relationship with the ideas and content Kristof shares - and through it, with him.
Contrast this approach with that of Thomas Friedman, who sets the agenda with his columns, books, and talks and you will see the difference immediately. Friedman is a leading journalist with a very nice portfolio site. Search Facebook and what do you find? Who's setting the agenda on conversation and connection?
Is Kristof showing us the future of journalism? Integrated, connected, multimedia, directly from the field. What does that teach businesses?
© 2006-2009 Valeria Maltoni. All rights reserved.