Blogging for Fun and Profit

Jun 23, 2005 - 12:07 pm 1 by

This session is moderated by Anne Kennedy.

Greg Jarboe, President and co-founder, SEO-PR There is a lot of misconceptions about what blogs are and he will go over it. He said a lot can be learned from the midnight ride of Paul Revere. Paul Revere road out to people he knew, and those people road out to people they knew and so on. The message spread and it totally shocked the area. He then talks about William Dawes who failed to raise the alarm in Waltham. The message was "The Regulars are coming out!" (not the red coats). Different messengers, same message, same medium. Paul sent that message to opinion leaders, whereas William sent it to random doors (they didn't know him). So if you are going to create a blog, you need to think about what effect you want. You need to be an expert in your field, and if you speak to other experts - you are set.

Over 11 million adults have created blogs, 9% of internet users - these people are not average. They are well educated, smart and well-off. Blogs post more "how to" information than new or opinion. Some people talk politics, more talk news, but most talk "how to" topics in blogs.

The reason why people read blobs is because they find the information there "extremely useful." The audience is about 32 million blog readers (11 million blogs), 25% of Internet users. The ratio is weird, but its a discussion. Its very interactive. 15 million post comments, and 6 million subscribe to RSS feeds.

There is a new model out there for marketers. More to it than awareness, interest, desire and action. Bloggers process is a bit different; knowledge, persuasion, decision, implementation and confirmation.

Wharton Business School had an issue that some publications had a rating system for business schools. They didn't, nor did other schools, have a way to know what the rankings would be. So they decided not to give out their data. That was a risk. So they needed to figure out who the opinion leaders are; staff, faculty, alumni, and current students. The current students were the sweet spot for this. So they put together an MBA admissions blog, where current students answer potential student's questions. The effect was lots of applications (5,622 applicants, 1,219 admitted, 825 enrolled, and 3.5 GPA did not drop). The magic was not just the blog, it was harvesting the opinion leaders.

What happens if you try to fake it, fake opinion?, a company hired bloggers to post wonderful things about this new milk product. This fake attempt failed miserably. All they achieved was a boycott of Dr Pepper/Seven Up's Raging Cow site (number one result is the boycott site in the SERPs).

Amanda Watlington, Ph.D. APR The 20 Secrets of Success from 70 Bloggers

  1. Not All Blogs Look Alike - she showed examples...Wow, she put up a picture of my blog, thank you.
  2. Not All Blogs Readers and Writers Are Teenagers: April 27 - 10,000,000 mark passed, lots of bloggers are using traditional media to blog topics.
  3. Most Blogs Have a Limited Audience
  4. Blogs Threaten the Media (so true; examples is, and toledo).
  5. Not Not All Blogs are Intended to be Media (INDIVIDUAL POLE << creation, collection, context, connection, conversation, community, collaboration >> NETWORK POLE)
  6. Most Blogs Are Conversations
  7. Blogs Are Easy to Set Up (She shows an example of Blogger)
  8. Blogs Are Not Easy to Maintain (blogs must be fed often and require discipline, blogs content must be well written, blog content must be fresh and timely, The blogger's voice must be easily heard in the content, Blogging must be a habit - not a chore)
  9. Blogs Have Got the "Google Juice"
  10. Blogs Can Make Money
  11. RSS - The Big Secret (It drives conversation)
  12. RSS - Feeds the Mix
  13. An RSS Feed is Just Another Text File
  14. Manage Your RSS Feeds
  15. RSS Readers Make Skimming Easy
  16. Search Engines Grok RSS (Yahoo News, Ask Yahoo)
  17. RSS is Not Just for Blogs
  18. Metrics for Measuring Blogs
  19. Just Do It!

Jeremy Zawodny, Technical Yahoo! Yahoo! Inc. He said he actually started blogging on his own and then it cropped into the corporate blogs.

Why I Blog? - I like having a voice - It helps me connect with smart people - It's in the Bill of Rights - Helps me keep up with friends/family - It is addictive - It's fun - The company [now] encourages it

Me vs. Yahoo Me - I never intended this to happen - Started writing about technology - Mentioned Yahoo now and then - People asked for more - So I wrote more - The rest is history

Why Companies Need Blogs - Small Companies need it for exposure, community, and personal connections - Big Companies need it to have a human voice, affecting internal change, exposure what's behind the curtains and you get feedback.

Unscientific Survey - Last year he asked on his blog, "Does reading my blog affect your perception of Yahoo!? - He posted a sampling of the replies, vast majority were positive, some neutral and some negative.

Surprises - People read this stuff (people stop him in hall and ask him how is plumbing is going, because he blogged on it) - People want to know more about Yahoo - Co-workers read it - Bosses, founders and CxOs read it - Journalists too - And competitors

Risks - Get Fired (Mark Jen (Google) & Joyce Park (Friendster)) - Piss off Co-Workers - Look stupid - Become public whipping boy - Become tech support for everyone on the Internet

It Got A Strong Reaction... - Hello GDS, Goodbye YDS (entry on his blog) - The world could really use Google Calendar (even though yahoo has one) - On Google Buying Flickr (Yahoo bought them later) - Yahoo Mail Pisses Off Google's Head PR Guy - Feed Search vs. Web Search - He lists a bunch more...

Yahoo Blog Guidelines - You can get sued - You can't tell secrets - Watch out for the press - Be respectful - Get your facts straight - Provide context for arguments - Engage in private feedback too

Subtle Things - There is no Yahoo! logo on my blog - I write "we" most of the time, but will write "Yahoo decided" once in a while. Usually when I disagree.

Random Stats - Number of times someone has "the talk" 3 - Number of posts being censored 2 - Total posts 1,727 - Total number of comments 14,673 - First post on 6/20/2002

Profit - I use Google AdSense - I make hundreds of dollars every month - I try not to let that influence what I write - I get a lot of job offers - I have way more connections with smart people


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