A few notes from the podcast:
Chris Pirillo made some good points about blogs being a branding tool to brand yourself – which is certainly one way to make money from blogs. Chis did write off CPA (affiliate programs) to some extent. I’m not sure I’d write it off quite as much as he would – it is an art but it’s certainly doable.
Tony Schneider from WordPress spoke about how blogs should be more about writing than making money. The most successful blogs are those that bring in big traffic according to Tony. Recommends not using AdSense but targeting your ads to your audience via sponsorship….
Terry Heaton says that good bloggers that make money don’t necessarily plan it – rather they are open to what happens as a result of what happens when they blog. People get too stuck in top down models. It’s too big to ‘figure out’ – we need to experiment, try things and see what happens.
Someone (I lost track of who was who) said – entry level is so low in blogging you can just try things to see if they work.
Elisa Camahort – having a plan to start with isn’t a bad thing – as easy as they are to start. There’s nothing evil about that.
Rex Hammock – if you want to make blogging a business you need to establish trust and authority – the same that mainstream publishers need to establish.
Susan Mernit – spoke about bloggers recommending products on blogs (example of Manolo the shoeblogger) and how more and more bloggers will go into this. Spoke about the need for transparency. Tony Schneider spoke about affiliate programs and how there is a big silence around making money from blogs – the blogging community is good at helping each other blog better but there is a silence around making money because everyone wants to keep that private (someone needs to send him a link to ProBlogger!).
Jake Ludington reemphasized that blogging builds relationship and trust.
The session seemed to degenerate into going into circles for a while here with lots of voices I didn’t recognize…. ahh the joys of un-conferences.
Someone (Dan?) asked why there isn’t a culture in blogging for people to donate to support blogs. Liz Henry answered by saying that so she reads so many blogs. Lance Knobel said that donations work better when they are asking for funding for specific projects.
Jake Ludington says that donations build a different kind of relationship with your readers as they feel they have a right to your content etc. It changes the nature of the interaction.
Tony Schneider – bloggers miss lots of opportunities at the local level. Lisa Williams says you won’t make money from AdSense via local blogs – she needs a way to put up local ads (note: AdSense does do geographical targeting – I’m not sure how local it goes but I do know of some people who do well from local advertising).
Jay Rosen – also talked about local advertisers who are not big enough to buy ads. He said no one is providing them a way to advertise. …
Buzz Buggerman says that those that are successful in the blogging world is that they have the ability to draw people to them.
There’s a bit more at the end that I’ve not had a chance to listen to yet. It was an interesting conversation – I would have enjoyed being there, not so much for the conversation but mainly because the mix of people in the room would have made for some excellent networking. Nice to hear some voices of people I read each day.