November 10, 2010

Blippy Pumps Profiles With Personality, Adds Product Q&A

Blippy is going well beyond purchase records, and becoming an ecosystem of brands, products and consumers, essentially replicating a "product graph" much like Facebook's much-vaunted "social graph". This week, the company introduced the capability to ask public questions of product buyers, initiating discussion, and also added fun profile pages that users can customize to make especially personal - from new fonts to layout and links to external sites. While the site is becoming more immersive in terms of offering a more rich product-oriented experience, it is quietly and quickly becoming one of the more engaging and well designed communities on the Web. It's much more than double rainbow 404 pages and spaceships on the login page, so don't get distracted by omgwtf nail clipper giveaways, for there's real meat underneath the shiny package.

Like other good social stream sites, Blippy started with a clean and simple flow of updates, later adding on comments and reactions. Later, came product pages and the ability to write detailed reviews of your every purchase, all collected next to similar responses from other buyers on the network. The addition of the option to start discussions on brands and products in Blippy is a natural extension, one that seems more comfortable than forced Question and Answer sites dedicated for this purpose.

New to Blippy: "Ask" about products or brands to all customers.

Take, for example, my own simple question to Apple customers about whether they were fans of the brand primarily for the company's software or hardware. A someone who distinctly remembers the company near extinction, when it was said they should exit the hardware game, I wanted to see where people's loyalties lie. Unsurprisingly, my quick question, in a matter of minutes, had people praising their software, or saying the marriage of the two was what made them fans.

Customization of Blippy Profiles

On the profile side, while most profiles are remarkably inflexible, such as those on Facebook and Twitter (which at least lets you update the background), Blippy's new profiles allow significant customization. From the country club pimp look of Philip Kaplan to the friendly MizzBlaze or my more traditional approach, you can now change the background, add a profile picture, give your name a fancy font, and add links to your other landing places on the Web. It's pretty sharp. They call it "Fancy".

My Customized Blippy Profile

Pud's Customized Blippy Profile

Blippy is a lot more than boring paper receipts now. It's a lively community with a growing pool of reviews and the ability to launch questions should lead to interesting debate. Get your questions in and update your profile to be snazzy.

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