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Summer 2008 DreamIT company Anthillz announced earlier this week that they have relaunched with a strong focus on building trusted relationships for business professionals. We initially covered Anthillz last month when they launched.
Anthillz describes their new mission as, "Unlike traditional social and professional networks, Anthillz encourages you to connect with only your trusted colleagues." They go on to say, "Our emphasis on trusted colleagues—rather than acquaintances and people you hardly know—makes our network a more reliable source of recommendations, referrals, and introductions." The only way to connect with someone on Anthillz is to write a trusted review of that person. It’s a very interesting concept to create a network of people who are in my trusted circle.
It sounds like a great idea especially in this world of the "auto-friend" on most networks. But I wonder if that’s what LinkedIn was supposed to be when it launched and eventually morphed over time. I’d propose a more business-focused name to go along with their new focus.
A new startup out of Philadelphia has launched and their goal is to help you create a reputation. Anthillz creates profiles based on testimonials and reviews written by colleagues you trust. There’s also the ability to write reviews of users based on their work performance. The profile contains a photo, basic skills information along with links to Web sites and porfolio information.
To add a review of a person on Anthillz, you create a "Trusted Colleague" relationship. To complete the process, both you and the colleague must write reviews of each other. This is different than most other systems which allow one-way reviews. While I get the idea of writing two-way reviews for colleagues, how would that work in a client-consultant relationship? I want my clients to leave reviews for me, but should I be forced to leave them a review just to get mine to show up?
Anthillz allows you to enter your LinkedIn profile address but I’d prefer that the profile was included directly on the page. Anthillz should aim to create the most overall in-depth profile possible if they are to compete with LinkedIn.
From a marketing perspective, reviews should be sent back to LinkedIn and linked to the Anthillz profile. This could be a way to get LinkedIn users to learn about what Anthillz has to offer. I’d also like to see a user widget so I can place my latest reviews and ratings directly onto my Web site. This would help users spread their profile and also spread the Anthillz name.
I like the direction that Anthillz is going but to win at the ratings and reputation game, they need to make sure that they offer enough tools and services for a user to want to show off their Anthillz profile over (or next to) other services like LinkedIn.