[UPDATE: See part 2 of this story here: http://www.experienceproject.com/stories/Want-To-Improve-The-Experience-Project/727955]
I want to give you a heads up about a new feature we're trying out that we hope will help you discover things on EP that we think will interest you.
Since we're still playing around with this (to see if it works or not), this is only going to be shown to a small group on EP that we randomly selected. If it turns out that this helps to improve your EP experience, we'll launch this feature for everyone.
Just to give you a sense of what this looks like - we're adding two new boxes to the top right of your profile page (right below where the notifications currently are). The top box is going to be a "Suggestions" box which will show you groups, people, and other things on EP that we think might interest you. These are suggested based on your current interests on EP, so for example if you are in the "I Like Coffee" group we may suggest to you the "I Drink Espresso" group or even the "I Like to Read" group, since we've seen that historically people that like the Coffee group also tend to like these other groups (and many others).
We'll do something similar for friend suggestions, where we'll suggest you someone's profile if the two of you have a lot of friends in common, or are in many of the same groups, or even if you like to read the same stories.
Generally speaking we're doing our best to find suggestions for you that we think you'll like. However, all of these are automatically generated by systems, so you may at times get a suggestions that doesn't make any sense or is a bit unusual. We're hoping that we are coming up with more good suggestions than bad ones, so hopefully this is generally a positive thing for your EP experience!
Also, we are going to have a "Sponsored Suggestions" box that will be shown underneath. Currently, an ad is being shown in that spot, so this will show up instead of the ad. What we're doing here is trying to show you ads that are more relevant based on your experiences. So, to take the example above, if you're in the "I Love Coffee" group, you may see a "sponsored suggestion" giving you a coupon for Starbucks, or perhaps showing you a coffee machine that you can buy online. We're hoping that by showing you offers and deals that are geared towards your interests, it will make your experience on EP more interesting.
It's important to note that none of the Suggestions (both regular and sponsored) are done on an individual basis (we want to avoid that "creepy" factor!). They are generally done based on groups you've joined.
If you have any questions, feel free to send me a PM, or add it to the comments below. Hopefully we can work through this together to test and improve this feature, so please bear with us as we iron out a few kinks here and there. Thanks all.