LiveBar Adds Interactivity to Static Websites
LiveWorld, a developer of web community and social media technologies, has recently introduced LiveBar -- a wham bam quickie way to liven up your more boring than average website. LiveBar takes a simple and/or static website and quickly transforms it into an interactive one, with what the company calls "bare bones" social media and online community features. LiveWorld realizes that many orgs, while desiring to play in the Web 2.0 pond, may not have the spare change to create, deploy and maintain a proper Web 2.0 site. LiveBar is their answer to this dilemma.

LiveBar's Background

LiveWorld created LiveBar because the company feels that there is a desire by publishers to have social communities and other Web 2.0 gadgets on their websites. However, it is a big undertaking to develop and maintain Web 2.0 applications from scratch. So, LiveWorld has decided to offer a simple solution, which combines a portable social networking community, blog and instant messaging system for publishers and brands interested in taking advantage of the social explosion and Web 2.0 technologies. The company also states that having social community functionality on a website will generally persuade users to stick around longer, and any additional time that a user spends on a page is a good thing.

LiveBar Features and Benefits

LiveBar is -- as it sounds like -- a bar. It is translucent and black, resides at the bottom of a web page and enables community functionality. A forum-like conversation can take place, and there's also a core community feature -- the ability to critique content.
Livebar Location LiveWorld Screenshot Social Networking

LiveBar On a Page

The only downside is that the user is supposedly required to sign up for the service before s/he can interact with other users, but it is, certainly, better than nothing at all. As far as monetization options, publishers can integrate advertisements (e.g., Google AdSense) within LiveBar, and while it looks somewhat cheesy to see an AdSense advertisement thrown into the interface, as illustrated below, perhaps, it can be optimized and potentially generate some money for the publisher.
Livebar Conversation Portable Social Networking

LiveBar's Ad Integration

The interface is elegantly designed, but there have been mentionings throughout the blogosphere that LiveBar can be easily overlooked due to its location and size. Given this "suggestion," LiveWorld has provided other ways to integrate and access LiveBar on a web page. Overall, LiveBar is fairly simple and self-explanatory. It is an intriguing idea that could work. LiveWorld is going for a "bare bones" solution, but some publishers might be inclined to take the all-or-nothing approach. It will be interesting to see if Livebar succeeds with all the competition in the web 2.0 arena, and we will be interested to see if it shows up on any well-known websites.