Nick Denton heads up Gawker Media, publishers of some of the highest profile blogs on the Internet: Gawker, Gizmodo and now Lifehacker (sponsored by Sony), which was discussed in a previous article. In a video interview, which can be seen on iMediaConnection, he discusses how he got into blogs, the role of PR and Marketing in relation to blogs and the future of blogging. Interesting stuff!
Look for the iMedia Video link and select Nick Denton from the dropdown list.
Robert Scoble is one of the most famous, and most linked to, bloggers on the Web. Last year he wrote a manifesto for the website ChangeThis, with the title The Corporate
Weblog Manifesto (free to download), where he gives his thoughts on what makes a good corporate weblog. The manifesto offers 20 practical tips for developing a Corporate Weblog, here are 3 of them:
1. Tell the truth. The whole truth. Nothing but the truth.
If your competitor has a product that's better than yours, link to it. You might as well. We'll find it anyway.
2. Post fast on good news or bad.
Someone say something bad about your product? Link to it — before the second or third site does — and answer its claims as best you can. .....
12. Never change the URL of your weblog.
I've done it once and I lost much of my readership and it took several months to build up the same reader patterns and trust.
10 Rules for Corporate Blogs and Wikis
2005: Year Of The Corporate Blog
Here's an interesting story that I picked up, via B.L. Ochman's website, about Sony's sponsorship of a new web log called Lifehacker.com. The article, entitled Sony Pays $25,000 a Month for Gawker Blog, says that the electronics firm is going to pay $75,000 over 3 months for the privilege. In order to view the article you will need to sign up (for free registration).
Steve Hayden is the vice-chairman of New York-based Ogilvy and Mather and is the man responsible for creating the famous 1984 ad for Apple, which introduced Apple Macintosh, and which has been hailed by some sources as being the greatest-ever advert. In an article from Fortune magazine - Want Truth in Advertising? Try a Blog - Hayden shares his thoughts on how blogs are changing the relationships between corporations, clients and advertisers. Coming from a top advertising executive this article makes for very interesting reading and, as with many article relating to corporate blogging, flags up the importance of blogging to business in general.
Business Blog Consulting
From the 24-25th January the Blog Busines Summit will take place in Seattle. One of the most prolific bloggers Robert Scoble will be giving the keynote address, with the subject The Blog Advantage. There are a number of interesting sessions going on with subjects including: Blog Business Models: What Strategies Make Money; Building Traffic: Posting isn’t Enough!; Picking a Platform: Blogging Engines Compared and Marketing Strategies and Tactics: PR and Beyond.
The actual blog on the site actually does an interesting test to see how Robert Scoble compares to the major PR firms on search engines and Alexa - How Robert Scoble Compares to the Top PR Firms. The results, though not surprising, are very interesting and should make PR companies take notice.
If you are celebrity spotting, Tom Peters has mentioned that he would be making an appearance at the summit.
Over the past few months I have received on this site, and on another blog of mine Mad About Madrid, a huge amount of comment and trackback spam. Comment spam is a technique used by certain webmasters and owners of websites to develop links from blogs (often with a high PR) to their own site. Here's what Wikipedia has to say about it:
Adding links that point to the spammer's web site increases the page rankings for the site in the search engine Google. An increased page rank means the spammer's commercial site would be listed ahead of other sites for certain Google searches, increasing the number of potential visitors and paying customers.
Comment spam falls into diffferent categories with the most basic being a blatant link left on an article to the spammer's website. Some of the more subtle ones leave a comment on the blog which you think is innocuous enough but on closer inspection is still spam.
My own opinion is to stamp it out wherever possible and I always delete comment spam wherever I see it. Why should others benefit from the hard work and time that I put into building my site? However, I´m always happy to accept comments from people who I believe add value to an article or who raise reasonable objections to what I write.
If you're using TypePad, make sure that you receive email notification of new comments and trackbacks. Delete spam comments and trackbacks before Google or other search engines spider your site. You should also make a note of the IP address of the spammer and add it to your IP banning list.
It wouldn't do any harm to look at what they're doing at Chongqed. You can leave details of the spammer on the site, find out which sites spam and help to stam out spam. Adam Kalsey has a good article about the subject with 184 comments (hopefully not all spam!).
Six Apart Guide to Comment Spam (Six Apart)
Comment Spam Manifesto (Adam Kalsey)
Comment Spam Compiled and Interpreted (sitepoint)
How spammers are targeting blogs (BBC)
Combating Comment Spam (WordPress)
Solving Comment Spam (Simon Willison's Weblog)
Here's an interesting interview that I came across via Marcomblog. It appears that the the guys at Gizmodo, the gadgets blog, were contacted by Microsoft and asked if they'd like to interview Bill Gates. Guess what they said? !!
In an interview between Joel Johnson and Bill Gates - G-Money and Me: Bill Gates Interview - the Microsoft boss discusses blogging, RSS, the PC and Apple. It makes for very interesting reading (the Apple stuff I quite liked) and here are a couple of Gates quotes:
I think blogging is super-important and we've got to do a lot more
software. The phenomena for us is we've got in beta this MSN Spaces
thing, and it lets you leverage everything you do around
Messenger—that's your buddy lists and those relationships—to set up
blogs, and who has access, and who gets notified. We've got up over a
million people [who] set up blog sites.
Almost everything that's being published on the web now has RSS
notification on it, so what would have been a website I would have gone
to my favorites list and looked at, now I get the notification. I have
the add-on to Outlook that lets me see those things.
Rick Bruner has got an interesting post on his blog, Business Blog Consulting, about the blog marketing exploits of organic dairy seller, Stonyfield Farm. Stoneyfield produces quality dairy products, such as yoghurt, which strictly adhere to organic principles - no artificial sweetners, flavourings or additives here. The company decided to reinforce their marketing message by creating 4 blogs. Rick, in a article entitled Business Blog Case Study: Stonyfield Farm, asks the company blogger some interesting questions in an email interview. Here are a few of the questions
1) What kind of traffic are you getting to your blogs (individually and/or collectively)?
2) What was the thinking behind launching the blogs in the first place?
3) What is the business rationale? What are you trying to accomplish from a marketing perspective (or otherwise)?
4) Are you measuring the benefit? If so, how? If not, why not and may you later? When?
5) What kind of feedback do you get from readers?
It just proves that blogs are a great marketing/corporate tool for any organisation.
The TypePad tool has enabled me to develop two very successful web logs, Marketing Tom and Mad About Madrid. So I thought that I would do some promotion for them and recommend that you go and take up their 'buy one, get one free' offer. They also have some great subsription rates, too.