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The Twelve Days of New Media Christmas

Jordon Cooper has a good post titled The Twelve Days of a New Media Christmas which is choc a bloc full of new media goodies to make any new media junkie’s mouth water – ‘The Twelve Days of Christmas are upon us and our trees are full of “geese a layin”, “piper’s piping” and “partridges in their pear trees”. In other word nothing useful at all. Instead of braving the long return lines at Wal-Mart in the hope you can return seven swans a swimming, why not check out some of the programs and web servies listed below and have a new media new year. All of the programs help spread knowledge, ideas, or help you create some new ones.’

Blogs for Sale – How Much is Your Blog Worth?

One of the trends that I suspect we’ll see more of in 2005 and beyond is Blogs for Sale. This past year saw Jeremy Wright sell his blog which proved that its possible – but the question it leaves me wondering is – ‘How Much?’

How much would you sell your blog for? How would you determine the asking price?

I’ve done a bit of searching around on Google and so far haven’t found too much quality advice. So far the main opinion I’m seeing is that you either sell it based upon one or all of the following three characteristics:

1. Domain Name Value – If you’ve got yourself a highly sought after domain name you might be able to sell that alone – the buyer could scrap your site and build their own. In a sense this is like selling your home that is falling down knowing that the buyer will knock it down and build something else – they’re paying for the land. Domain name value can range incredibly – loans.com apparently sold for $3,000,000 for example….
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Doc Searls responds to Blogging for Money Criticism

Doc Searls has been on the receiving end of some criticism recently after some of what he said at BloggerCon and a quote that appeared in a recent Newsweek article on blogging. Today he posts a good post clarifying his postition on problogging:

‘So let me make this as clear as I can. I have nothing against making money with blogs. Hell, I’d love to make money with IT Garage, and I’m watching closely what Nick and Jason and Tony and Stowe are up to, because they’re among the leaders at figuring that out. Chris Nolan, too, as a stand-alone journalist. Also Dan Gillmor. Same are Doug Kaye, Marc Canter and too many others to name here, each in their own ways.

See, I think the future of periodical publishing, and of journalism itself, will be built mostly by individual bloggers and indivdidual blogs, and by a new breed of publishers who harvest and republish (and, yes, pay for) goods from the wide open ranges where bloggers roam, and post, free. The day will come when the top print publications will be comprised of prose and pictures provided by blogs and bloggers….

Meanwhile, I still think there’s more money being made because of blogs than with them. Problem is, I have no hard evidence for that. There also are not many people, besides myself and Dave Winer, who are interested in talking about it.’

Ok – I actually think that most of us are on the same page here. Whilst there are a few examples of bloggers writing off blogging directly for money as not being viable – I think its generally accepted that there are numerous examples of individuals or groups who are making a living from their blogs. Along side this I think we’re also seeing individuals and groups emerge who are making a living indirectly from blogging whether that be through consulting, blog design, blog services/tools or as a result of the credibility that they build through their blog in their area of expertise.

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Holiday Visits to Retail Sites Up 24 Percent

ClickZ reports that traffic continues to be up in online retail outlets which is a good sign for many probloggers who use affiliate programs to send their readers to such stores:

‘In another indication of the growth of advertising and retail opportunities online this holiday season, U.S. visits to shopping Web sites accounted for 9.7 percent of all Internet visits in the week ending December 11. That figure represents a 24.1 percent increase over the same time period in 2003, according to the latest Hitwise report.

But in targeting different retail sectors, the top three search engines appear to outperform their rivals in certain online niches, said Bill Tancer, vice president of research at Hitwise.’

Read more at Holiday Visits to Retail Sites Up 24 Percent Over 2003

Weblogs Inc revise 100 blogs in a year prediction

Jason Calacanis reflects upon the end of Weblogs Inc’s first year of blogging in which they had predicted started 100 blogs but in which they will actually start approximately 75. He writes:

‘However, the main reason for us not hitting 100 is that we decided to shift our strategy from niche blogs (i.e. scuba or cigars), and instead do bigger category blogs like Gadling (travel, with a scuba section) and Luxist (luxury, with a cigar section).’

Read more at Hitting 100 blogs in year one…

75 blogs or 100 blogs it has been a pretty impressive start from Weblogs Inc who are getting a real foothold on many valueable niches of the blogging market.

Feedburner Feedcount

I have recently been using Feedburner’s RSS services and have found them to work quite well. A number of you now read this site via the Feedburner RSS feed (although most still track us on the old one).

In the last day or two Feedburner have added a new feature to help you promote your readership via RSS – its a little button like this one that shows how many of you are using this RSS feed to follow my ramblings.

Click it to subscribe to get the feed in order to add it to your news aggregator.

Marketers Spent $4 Billion on Search Advertising

Those of you running contextual advertising programs will be happy to hear these latest figures – ‘Advertisers will spend $4 billion in 2004 by year-end on search marketing programs, and are expected to spend 39 percent more on such programs in 2005, according to the Search Engine Marketing Professional Organization (SEMPO).

SEMPO, a non-profit professional organization that promotes search engine marketing, issued a report today that suggests the robust market for search services will continue. The report, “The State of Search Engine Marketing 2004” covers U.S. and Canadian markets and has a number of illuminating observations.’

Read more at Marketers Spent $4Billion on Search

Blog Predictions for 2005

Already I’ve seen three articles with predictions for 2005 – expect a lot more! The best of those relating to Blogging today is from Pete Blackshaw from ClickZ who writes a number of insightful predictions including one on blogs which he says will ‘absorb flak, yet stay on track’:

‘Publishers, site managers, and even message board managers will embrace (or in some cases, begrudgingly capitulate to) RSS (define). Big brands and their sites will find the “add water and stir” nature of blog publishing tools irresistible. That will humble overpriced agencies that view platforms such as TypePad and Movable Type as more evil than outsourcing.’



Read more at Buzz-Informed Predictions for 2005

A Message of Hope for Depressed ProBloggers

Judging by my inbox this mornig it seems that my post examining whether contextual advertising is viable on a blog both inspired and depressed a few bloggers that had been thinking about running Adsense and Overture on their blogs.

In short what I was trying to show in the post was that making money from a blog through contextual advertising wasn’t quite as easy as some might think – but that under the right circumstances you could make quite a lot of money using it.

In doing so I posted some tables that outlined a variety of scenarios and how much bloggers could earn.

For example:

- a site with 2,000 daily impressions and a click through rate (CTR) of 1% and 5 cent ads would earn $1 per day
- a site with 10,000 daily impressions at 2% CTR with 10 cent ads earns $20 per day
- a site with 10,000 daily impressions at 5% CTR with 50 cent ads earns $250 per day

The variety of combinations are limitless – check out the tables in this post for more on this.

Ok – so it seems that some who emailed me were a little depressed by these figures. At the lower end of the spectrum, say $5 – $20 per day isn’t much is it!? True – its not. But let me share a messages from my experience that might give a little hope.

1. Blogging is a 7 days per week venture – Most traditional jobs are 5 days a week. When I first started blogging for dollars it took a while to get in the habit of not multiplying my daily earnings by 5. $20 per day is $140 per week or $600 in a 30 day month – or $7300 in a year….
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PubSub LinkRanks

PubSub LinkRanks are a useful tool that help to keep track of how different domains are being linked to by the blogosphere. They define them as:

‘LinkRanks are a measure of how many pages link to each particular site, with more weight given to fresher links and to links from a wider variety of pages.’

They help you keep track of what is hot in terms of topics/sites but are also useful for tracking your own domain.

For example they will keep track of how your domain is going over a month with a little graph. For example my livingroom.org.au domain has been pretty up and down this last month in terms of inward links and has ranked anywhere from 580th to 460th in the sites being tracked. Also helpful is their list of sites linking up to your domain.

Get a full description of how LinkRanks works here.