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Weblogs Inc. adds top execs

‘Touting itself now as “the world’s largest blog publisher,” Weblogs Inc. announced it has hired an editorial director and a vice president of sales and marketing. Judith Meskill, a communications consultant who writes a blog about social networking, will oversee the editorial side of the company. “We’re going to have 100 blogs by the end of this year (50 at present), and 300 in 2005. Judith’s ability to create systems for managing growth is going to be invaluable,” said Brian Alvey, a co-founder of Weblogs Inc. Also, Shawn Gold, former president of eUniverse — which used the Web and e-mail to distribute online greetings, games, cartoons, jokes and contests — signed on to head up business and content strategy, the company said.’

Read more at Weblogs Inc. adds top Execs

Shawn Collins on RSS: RSS & Blogs and Affiliate Marketing [MarketingStudies.net]

Here is an interesting interview with Shawn Collins (an affiliate program manager) on the topic of RSS & Blogs and Affiliate Marketing.

‘Since it’s increasingly challenging to reach the inbox of affiliates, with Spam filters, ISP black lists, abandoned email addresses, etc., I think RSS will emerge as the preferred tool for communicating with affiliates….

It makes all the sense in the world for affiliate programs to pursue and place increased value on blogs as affiliates. In general, contextual placement of ads is the best way to make money in affiliate marketing, especially if an affiliate has unique content, and they integrate text links into their content (i.e. making every instance of the word book link through an Amazon affiliate link).’

PS: Don’t know what Affiliate Marketing is? Read What is Affiliate Marketing?

Blogs a good buy for Advertisers

‘Advertisers including Paramount Pictures, The Wall Street Journal, and The Gap are successfully reaching niche audiences for a fraction of the cost of traditional advertising and a handful of bloggers are earning six-figure incomes from their blogs. Why aren’t more advertisers and bloggers getting together? Fear, ignorance and the knowledge that a lot of pioneers got shot.

With clickthrough rates in traditional online advertising dropping, inexpensive blog clickthroughs are as high as 5 percent. Blogs provide advertisers an excellent opportunity to reach a devoted audience niche for as little as $10 a week. Already, blogs like DailyKos which receives 15 million page views a month, get $9,000 a week for advertising and is sold out for weeks in advance.

Advertising on blogs is not like buying a minute on the Super Bowl says Henry Copeland, founder of Blogads, which matches advertisers with blogs. Successful blogs are edgy, have a sense of humor, and are recognized experts in a narrow niche. Blog audiences look at traditional ads, like “Click here, get 20% off,” and say “screw this, I’ve seen it everywhere,” Copeland says.’

Read more at Blogs a Good Buy for Advertisers but Fear and Ignorance keep media buyers away

Google Sees Brand-Advertising Opportunities

Those of you using Adsense might be interested in some of the upcoming changes and directions of the program being talked about by Google executives.

‘ After building its business through direct-response search listings, Google is likely to expand into brand advertising.

Speaking to investment analysts on the company’s first-ever earnings call last week, Google executives said its fledgling effort at distributing graphical ads was an important initiative for the company. Google has begun to test the display of graphical ads on Google Image search. For now, the graphic ads shown through AdSense are priced on a click basis. Display advertising is often sold on a cost-per-thousand-impressions basis. Stein said Google is unlikely to simply adopt CPM pricing, but could instead have a hybrid system that charges a flat fee for impressions on top of click charges.’

Read more at Google Sees Brand-Advertising Opportunities

The World of Contextual Advertising

Puneet Mehrotra has a good article introducing the The World of Contextual Advertising. He writes – ‘How much? Good question. I know of webpreneurs whose earnings range between $200 to $2,00,000 per month. Of course, it’s not child’s play. But no one said earning big bucks is a child’s play!…’

‘So what’s the next boom. Well the web pundits are saying it’s going to be behavioral advertising, where anonymous monitoring and tracking the content viewed, and length of visit are databased and analysed to predict an online behavioral pattern for the user. My say, well I doubt, complicated things seldom do well. And with most computers getting condomed by the day with firewalls and blockers and not to mention privacy violation litigation, I doubt if such a model would succeed. Well, that’s just my say, time will tell what will do well. But yes contextual advertising is definitely there to stay. Notepad is still the favorite editor, no application in the world has been able to replace it so far. SMS is still the favorite text-messaging tool. Bells and whistles might pretend to make noise but simplicity sings its own song.’

Read more at The World of Contextual Advertising : HindustanTimes.com:

[Read more...]

10 No-Cost Ways to Generate Site Traffic

‘No matter how cool your site or how fabulous your product, you’re not going to generate enough sales to make your business viable unless you can generate traffic. You have to get the word out about your site and give people a reason to visit it, or else you’ll go the way of the dinosaur.

The good news is, there are lots of ways to effectively advertise your site online and drive tons of qualified traffic to your site, all for free! And by qualified, I mean people who belong to your target market and who are most likely to buy the products or services you offer. These are the people you want coming to your site.

Without further ado, here’s our countdown of the top 10 traffic-generating tactics:

Traffic Generation Tactic #10: Use viral marketing strategies to “infect” people with the desire to learn more about your product. These days, viral marketing messages are spreading through the Web like wildfire. Viral marketing is any type of advertising that is self-perpetuating, compelling people to share it with others so that it spreads through a community like a virus—but a good one.’



Read more at 10 No-Cost Ways to Generate Site Traffic

The Impact of Blogs on PR

Steve from Micro Persuasion has kindly posted a presentation he did on the Impact of Blogs on PR. It is a well thought out presentation that covers the basics through to some good conclusions on the topic – complete with powerpoint slides and audio.

‘Bloggers are the leading force of change here. A blog is basically a web site owned by an individual or group that’s written with a human voice. They are easily discovered, usually organized chronologically, and written by people you can reach out and touch. It’s this last point – the social nature of blogs – that differentiates them from more staid corporate web sites.’

Read more at Micro Persuasion: Presentation on the Impact of Blogs on PR

BloggerCon – Making Money with Your Blog

Doc Searls has an interesting post on making money with blogs in preparation for a session on the topic at the next Blogger Con. He asks a lot of thought provoking questions and then puts forward an interesting case…

‘As you can see, I have a position here. I believe it’s far more important (and interesting) to make money because of our blogs, rather than with them; just as we make money because we have phones rather than with our phones.

There are exceptions. Some of us make money by selling on the phone. If that’s you, think about what trying to sell over your blog (instead of the phone) would do to your relationships with readers.

Of course, lots of people use advertising to defray the costs of blogging. And, to be frank, I really don’t care much if you have advertising on your blog, or if you make money that way. If that makes you happy, or makes you money, fine. I expect we’ll spend some time comparing various advertising options. But let’s also ask, How interesting is that, once you’re past describing whatever it takes to get going with Adsense or Blogads? It’s cool that they provide a service and an income stream. But I’d like to see us budget time for each of the potential topics we can cover.’

Read more at BloggerCon – Making Money Session

Blogs and Newspapers – Command Post

The Command Post did a talk to editors of Associate Press newspapers recently and put the content of what he said up online – its well worth the read.



‘Here’s the lesson from Command Post: information in general, and news in particular, is now a flow, and not a stock.

Before the internet, information was governed by set distribution channels and gatekeepers … brokers … who decided who was able to have what. The stock broker had the price. The real estate agent had the prior housing report. The car salesman had your credit report.

And in news, the journalists had the facts, and the editors acted as brokers, making choices about what would be reported and what wouldn’t.

Not the case now. The Internet hates brokers. It KILLS brokers. Now, because of the Internet, everyone with a computer, an email address and a browser is a point of distribution … the only thing needed for information to “get out” is an interest on the part of one person to supply it, and a demand on the part of another person to have it.

When you have a billion people connected to each other, there is a supply and a demand for everything … and when you have search engines like Google, they actually have the ability to find each other.’

Read more at The Command Post – The Publisher’s Desk – Full Text Of My Speech To AP Managing Editors

Corporate Bloggers

Sifry is writing about Corporate Blogger today – he numbers them as 5000:



‘These are people who blog in an official or semi-official capacity at a company, or are so affiliated with the company where they work that even though they are not officially spokespeople for the company, they are clearly affiliated. For example, the folks in SAP’s developers program get blogs if they want them, and are available to anyone who joins the (free) SAP developers network. This group also includes folks at Sun Microsystems and at Microsoft, where employees are actively encouraged to blog.’



Read more at Sifry’s Alerts: Corporate Bloggers

The other posts in this series of posts are also worth reading – at State/Size of the BlogosphereGrowth of the BlogosphereBig Media vs Blogs.