Do you notice anything in common among the three screen prints above? I did. They are the log-out screens of Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIN, and are the screen you see when you're logging out when accessing these membership sites on a desktop PC or laptop (not a mobile phone). We talked about the mobile version of Twitter recently, but that problem seems to have been rectified, fortunately, as the complaints have died down.
More important than the content of these log-out screens, however, is the fact that the sites are using their log-out screens to their advantage. LinkedIN has even found a way to promote its members by running a couple of their ads at the bottom of the screen.
We've talked here about making your 404 (error) page work for you, and some of the same principles would apply to a log-out screen. You could always try something funny, to leave a good impression in your users' memory. Just make sure your users are really going to understand the joke, and aren't confused or upset by it, like I'm sure some were with this one:
Speaking of not upsetting your users, this probably isn't the place to monetize your site (unless you're actually promoting your own users, as LinkedIN has done in the scren shot at the top of the page), because spamming your userbase as they are on their way out of your site is a good way to make sure they wait as long as possible before they return (*cough* GoDaddy *cough*). If you're going to put promotional material here, maybe try a coupon or freebie. Remember, your users are logged off by the time they see this page, so offering something that will require them to log back in is probably not going to be effective.
What good ideas have you seen for people creatively using logout or 404 screens?