LiveJournal: Simple And Effective For A Certain Kind Of Company
March 14, 2014

LiveJournal: Simple And Effective For A Certain Kind Of Company

Anonymous | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 6 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Overall Satisfaction

LiveJournal has been used as a supplement to other social media tactics like Twitter, Facebook, and Tumblr. It was was mostly a way to display shorter posts with more targeted relevance to a subject matter than some of the longer-form blogs that I was tasked with composing.

As far as addressing problems, its basic goal was to be a cost-efficient way to expand our outreach om the internet. Especially since I worked for an internet-based company, this was very important.
  • Anyone can use it: The default formatting for LiveJournal is so simple that anyone could grasp it. It's true that the results are quite bare-bones without customization, but depending on how you want to use it, this may be a good thing.
  • It has free options: By default you'll be added to a Plus account that gives you 1GB worth of space and the basic freedom to create decently detailed posts.
  • There are advanced settings too: For those that have the experience, HTML and other forms of coding are allowed. This makes it easy for qualified individuals to get the most out of even the basic services. You can even program your own custom themes if you have the know-how.
  • Tagging features mean that SEO enthusiasts can try their hand at making their posts more present in popular search engines.
  • You may feel nickel and dimed: Yes there are basic free options available, but beyond those choices, the site makes it very difficult to not spend money. For example, they have many themes you can apply to your page, but many of them cost about $30. This is fine depending on the financial situation of your company, but for those that don't want any more added expenses, you may want to steer clear.
  • The interface may be too simple: Even some of the most professional pages wind up looking somewhat bare-bones and inexperienced. Especially when there are other free alternatives out there like WordPress that create nice GUIs without any hard work, this can be a real turn-off.
  • Because your journal appears in a large community and most users don't spend the money to register a specific domain, sometimes it can be hard to bring traffic to your LiveJournal. The best case scenario for us was to put the link on our homepage, but that only ushered in a few random comments on occasion. It has a niche fanbase which means you won't get as much traffic as Twitter or Facebook even if you use their tagging tools.
  • Better overall social media presence: It allowed us to look well-rounded as a company so that we could provide a more complete social media front.
  • It did generate some traffic: Our best post got 150 visitors in a week, which isn't too bad for something that was only meant to be an additive to the blogs we already own and operate.
  • It allowed for greater connection with our readers: Every comment we received is one that may not have happened on our home site. It's hard to tell how this impacted overall visitor numbers, but there was at least some return in the form of comments that showed we were making progress.
  • WordPress,Blogger,Joomla
LiveJournal does not hold a candle to any of these alternatives in my opinion. The above options allow for more flexibility with their free suites, and provide more professional results with less work. We actually do not use the LiveJournal much anymore because these other alternatives work far better. We used it only as an additive to what the other products bring us.
It didn't work out for us because even the best tagging tools did not generate much traffic. We have very few employees, so we don't have the resources to put much effort or money into expanding the platform. As I previously said, I think LiveJournal could incite positive change in other circumstances; but it didn't improve us enough to warrant a renewal.
I think the best scenario for LiveJournal is for those with more artistic career paths. Those interested in photography art, entertainment etc, are probably more inclined to see a benefit in LiveJournal. It allows for easy commentary and conversation which is most essential to those kinds of fields.

Other areas where it might not be useful is in retail or corporate-based scenarios. The service implies a casual atmosphere, so it may be a tough sell for those that want to look professional.

A final question I would pose is what you truly need it for. It can be a great additive to any social media campaign because it's free, but you wouldn't want to base your entire strategy around it.

Evaluation and Selection

  • Price
  • Product Reputation
  • Third-party Reviews
The basic idea was that it offered a free way to expand our social media presence. The site has a good reputation, and we were keen to see if it could improve the visitor stats we were already getting. It's hard to refuse something that doesn't have to cost your company anything.
I think we would pay more attention to something that gets more favorable SEO results. We might also want something that offers more features for for free. LiveJournal was very much a knee-jerk decision for us, so I think greater time to evaluate the alternatives I mentioned in my review would have been a good idea.