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BlogTalk Downunder – Another Aussie Blogging Conference

It looks like there will be yet another Aussie Blogging conference in Australia next year – this time in Sydney between 20 – 21 May.

As with the Melbourne conference that we mentioned a few days ago, there are not many details yet but the fact that there are two groups talking about such an event is promising for bloggers downunder. My only wonder is if they should combine their efforts and put on a bigger and better conference together.

I hope to get to both events.

Learn more at Learning Technologies: BlogTalk Downunder

The Business Of Blogging

Business Week Online has an interesting article on The Business Of Blogging. It is pretty basic with the usual quotes from the usual probloggers – but its another example of how blogging for dollars is becoming more main stream.

‘Now advertisers are realizing there is a market emerging in the blogosphere. Already, the growth in regular online advertising, estimated to be about 35% this year, will far outpace the spending increases for any other sector of the media world. Add to all this the fact that about 11% of Internet users today are inveterate blog readers, and the blogging scene starts to get mighty compelling for marketers.

Don’t expect a repeat of the dot-com rush that inflated the Web bubble of the late 1990s. “This is a long game, with lots of ebbs and flows,” says Henry Copeland, founder of media-buying firm BlogAds. Blogging isn’t about to lead to vast wealth anytime soon, says Copeland, but he does expect “more money to [flow to] more authors as smart advertisers bypass publishers and pay authors directly for their audiences.” BlogAds is placing ads on 50 to 100 blogs a day for up to 20 advertisers, including Sharp Electronics Corp. and Walt Disney Co. Just six months ago, the firm served 20 blogs for about 10 advertisers….’

Read more at The Business Of Blogging

Weblogs Inc Introduces Luxist

Luxist

Weblogs Inc have just announce their latest blog Luxist – a blog that promotes itself as obsessively covering luxury products. They write about everthing from clothes, to gadgets, to jewelry through to cars.

Their income stream will be much the same as other Weblogs Inc blogs and includes Adsense and private advertising.

How to Grow Your Blogging Income

Dan Harper asked in the comments of my post on No Money in Blogging? for more comment on the ‘growth factor’ of blogging. He asks:

‘How long would a new blogger see slow growth for?
What do you think that factors are here, any advice on speeding the growth up?’

Good questions – I guess in many ways they are the Million Dollar Questions so to speak and ones that many would like ‘the answer’ to.

Unfortunately there is no one answer to speeding up the growth and earnings on your blog. There are however a number of things to consider that I’ve previously written about but which tend to get lost in the archives on this site. As a result I thought I’d outline some of the more popular and helpful posts that I’ve written below:
[Read more...]

MSN get on the Blogging Express – or have they missed it?

Paid Content has a good Round-up of MSNs launch into Blogging. Maybe I’m just overly tired after a big week at conferences but I’m over all the writing about it. I’m not sure how much impact MSN will have upon blogging – at least in the short term.

2005 Australian Blogging Conference

Just found a site for the 2005 Australian Blogging Conference. Not much in the way of details of a time and place yet – except to say that it will be in Melbourne sometime in February 2005. Suits me fine as that is my home city and apart from two days February is looking very empty in my diary so far!

I’ll be interested to see how it all unfolds in terms of content, turn out and its success.

Monetizing Blogs

In stark contrast to the last post, Jasen Dowdell at marketing shift predicts that Bloggers will start to get more and more attention from Ad agencies. He predicts:

‘- Ad agencies will seek out A-List bloggers who have strong relationships with other A-List bloggers to head up their blog placement departments.

- Someone will step up and create a blog taxonomy that shows the key players in specific blog verticals. This will identify the “people to know” if you want to succeed with your blog pr campaign.

- Large PR Firms and Ad Agencies will spin off subsidiaries dedicated to blogs to increase their relationship with bloggers and appear to be experts in blog product placement and blog pr.

- Blogs will continue to increase their focus on specific areas whether these are niche verticals or niche subject areas.’



Read more of this interesting (and hopeful) article at Monetizing Blogs

No Money in Blogging?

Steve Smith from EContent writes that there will be no dollars in blogging in 2005 for bloggers or networks (like Gawker and Weblogs Inc) who are directly blogging. He writes:

‘The wild and wooly blogosphere itself will not make money for many, including blog networks like Gawker Media and Weblogs Inc. Nevertheless, blogs are already proving to be powerful audience retention devices for known media brands. Some B2B sites report that up to 10% of daily traffic now goes to columnist blogs. Blogging is less a business model than a thoroughly compelling communications model that keeps users coming back two and three times a day more effectively than standard content refreshes. Accept it and get sponsors for it.’

This is the second such article I’ve seen arguing this this week (the first was here).

Once again I wonder if Steve is perhaps being a little short sighted with this statement. I acknowledge he says this approach will not make money for many – leaving things open for a select few to make money blogging – but I would argue that quite a few have already stumbled upon formulas for making money directly from blogging and that 2005 will see the number of those making a living directly from the medium explode – likewise I predict that we’ll see those already taking this approach start to earn some very big money. In fact I think 2005 will see a number of bloggers earning $1 million and over. If they’re smart they will probably keep these figures to themselves – but it will happen – if not next year it will happen in 2006 for sure.

As I talk to pro-bloggers and reflect upon my own experience in two short years I’ve noticed that the trend is a for a very slow start to levels of earnings – but that there comes a tipping point where the growth becomes exponential. Most bloggers exploring the income side of blogging give up before the tipping point however and never see the reward for their efforts. Of course it is not just a matter of time and patience – it takes some smarts, hard work and a little luck along the way.

Update: Steve Rubel spotted this same article and has a few things to say on the topic also. I particularly agree with his observation about the lack of overheads for bloggers. My biggest overhead is my own time. The opportunity cost of me putting my time into another job or business is significant because I choose to blog virtually full time – however apart from this I have virtually no expenses apart from a small ISP, hostings, design and home office costs.

Update: Wayne at Blog Business World has also entered the discussion and writes – ‘As blogs become more deeply entrenched, within both the mainstream media and the mainstream consciousness, money will flow naturally in their direction. If other companies discover the power of blogs, as an advertising vehicle that returns highly targeted buyers, you can be absolutely certain that savvy marketers will put their cash into blogs.’

American Roulette

American Roulette is an interesting case study of a blogger using the medium to make a few dollars. Its written by a ‘professional casino cheater’ who gives thoughts on casinos and gambling. The site isn’t highly monetized at this point – Income streams so far seem limited to Amazon affiliateship and another affiliate program – but if he can get his traffic to a high level with a topic like this he could be making some serious money.

Interesting concept – its a quirky enough topic that its likely to get some interesting link ups like it did today from Boing Boing.

JenSense – it’s all about the AdSense…

JenSense will be a blog to watch if you’re using Adsense as it is run by ‘Jenstar’ who is a legend in Adsense forums where she is a moderator and guru. I’m putting this on in my RSS tracker as we speak – sure to be some useful tidbits in this one for all of us using Adsense – whether old hands or newbies.