Background on Empire Avenue, the Social Media Exchange

In the first post in this two part series, I outlined my initial experience of the new social media phenomenon, Empire Avenue, the Social Media Exchange and promised this follow-up post with some fruits of my rather quick tour of related blog posts and discussions.

By the way, I’ve been on Empire Avenue for less than a week and so far my stock is rising, so I think I’m doing something right.

Des Walsh profile on Empire Avenue, the Social ExchangeSome shortcuts for your own Empire Avenue research

As I trawled for information and opinions on Empire Avenue (EA), I found several blog posts and discussions which helped me get some understanding of the platform and how it works. Here is a selection, with some snippets.

Letters in brackets after names are the respective people’s EA ticker symbols.

Tal Baron (TBAR) provides a good starting point with two posts introducing EA, the first of which explains what it is and how it works and the second of which got my attention just by virtue of the title:

The Empire Avenue Experience Part 1

So what is Empire Avenue? Many users including myself share the thought that EA is like a crowd sourced version of Klout. One tweet by Jeremiah Owyang offers another explanation – “Empire Avenue explained in 140 characters: It’s Farmville for Social Media”. While there are certainly social media and gaming elements, Empire Avenue is also a stock market for people.

5 Reasons Empire Avenue Could be the Next Big Thing in Social Media

On Quora, Adriel Hampton (ADRIEL), who I’ve since discovered is very active on EA, kicked off a very interesting discussion about EA with his question, Will Empire Avenue take off or is it a fad?

Empire Ave is a social network/game that acts like a virtual stock market allowing you to “buy” stock in both friends and brands. The tech elite have recently jumped on it. Is it the next rising star or crashing meteor?

Rick Liebling (RICKL), in his post Empire Avenue’s Social Media Silver Bullet, listed two particular aspects of Empire Avenue which helped him see it favorably in comparison with its close competitors:

(i) First, I can have a say in my score, or someone else’s via Empire Avenue in a way I can’t with the other sites.

(ii) And that’s the second killer part to Empire Avenue. It’s got a compelling game element that keeps you coming back (like Farmville). You could spend 3 or 4 minutes on PeerIndex. You could spend 3 or 4 hours on Empire Avenue.

Shel Israel (NAKD) really got my attention with his post headed Why I Think Empire Avenue is a Winner and I was particularly interested in his comparison with the Klout experience (which reflected my own experience, even at this early stage, with the two platforms):

But I do think that it (Empire Avenue) shows the street creds of people in social media, and your stock score says what people think of you while your Klout score shows the result of computer-based data analysis. This is the wisdom of a crowd vs the stats of a spreadsheet, and I for one, will go with people every time. I think Empire Avenue is social analytics at its best.

Caleb Storkey (CALEB) looks specifically at the question of business benefits and hosts a very interesting discussion with social media leaders Robert Scoble and Jeremiah Owyang and offers the enticing/warning advice:

….get involved and get on board. But do so carefully – it’s sticky.

Domino Oracle (DOMINO_ORACLE) has a really good introduction to EA in My protips for Empire Avenue n00bs (people AND businesses) part 1 and advises

Be social and interested in what others have to say, and you will go far in the game.

Chris Pirillo provides advice on how to win at Empire Avenue

Empire Avenue isn’t just a game, but there is a level of “achievement” built into Empire Avenue to help motivate you in the process of meeting and looking for interesting new people.

Jesse Noyes (JPN), in the post 8 Share Spiking Tips for Empire Avenue calls EA “a startling addictive new social media engagement site”.


I plan to revisit the subject when I have more experience.

In the meantime, and as mentioned in the first post in this two part series, if you are on Empire Ave, my ticker symbol is DESWALSH – right now it is moving, although not with a bullet (yet!). If you are not yet there and intrigued enough to want to try it, you can use this link as an invitation, or answer one of those email invitations from your friends (both inviter and invitee benefit with some bonus Eaves). Or you can join directly and forego the bonus.(someone said the link for my invitation – in the text – was not clear, so here it is “in the open”


As with the previous post on the topic, I would love to hear about your experience with Empire Avenue, or opinions for or against.

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Des Walsh is an executive coach. He helps business owners and entrepreneurs worldwide deal effectively with the feeling of being left behind or overwhelmed, or both, about social media – especially LinkedIn - and how to engage safely and effectively with social media to help grow their business. Connect with Des on LinkedIn, Google+ and Twitter. And to stay in the loop, get Des’s weekly Social Business Bites (select snippets of his "best of the week" online finds).