Wednesday, 24 October 2007

Where are the Good Minnesota Business Blogs?

I asked twitter about good MN business blogs and Mike Keliher mentioned the new Twin Cities Business Magazine site, while it’s not wholly a blog, there’s an editor’s blog and a very short list of local business blogs, including Graeme Thickins’ blog.

I’m not confident in getting the whole story from a single source, so who else needs to be on the list?

Add links in the comments and I’ll put together an aggregation.


Wednesday, 1 August 2007

Tuesday, 5 June 2007

How To Decide Which Bloggers to Give Press Passes To?

I got a call today from a local organization asking for a list of blogger to extend press passes to. I was familiar with the organization and have a pretty good idea who would dig what they were doing. The criteria they were most interested in was size of readership.

From my email reply:

“In the blog world, who is reading (influence) is far more important than how many are (reach). With that in mind, I highly recommend reviewing the above blogs for the topics and perspectives they cover, and review their ‘Authority’ in Technorati (the number of blogs linking to them, higher is better) and base your invitations on that.”

Would you have recommended a different technique?

Wednesday, 7 March 2007

Costco Connection: The Power of Podcasts

The March 2007 Costco Connection member magazine has a quick one-page article entitled “The Power of Podcasts” for marketing small businesses.

Definitely. Always glad to see someone with the reach of Costco is promoting podcast as an “indirect direct marketing” tool and “silent sales force”.

Friday, 5 January 2007

Tuesday, 14 November 2006

Blogging as Image Control

“Leonsis is what you might call a defensive blogger. His main goal isn’t to enter into a ‘conversation’ with the AOL ‘community,’ but just to gain more control over the results that show up when people google him.” – Nick Carr

If you have blog and it isn’t the first thing that comes up in searches for your name – there’s something seriously wrong. I see nothing wrong with this strategy – often times, it’s the easiest strategy for people to glean when I talk about reasons to blog.

Whether this strategy is ‘cluetrain-friendly’ is a separate issue. It is however far better than someone other than yourself controlling your search results.

Related: Take Control of Your Reputation – Blog

Thursday, 5 October 2006

“Statistically Nobody is Listening to Your Podcast”

“…at the beginning of the year Feedburner had 1 million subscriptions to podcasts it helped deliver. That number has now grown to 5 million subscribers for 71,000 podcasts. For you math fans, that means the average podcast has … 70 subscribers. – Frank Barnako”

(emphasis mine.)

70 is a great number. It’s not a number that makes sense for advertisers – it’s statistically zero (credit to Dave Slusher for the quote titling this post). Well, until we can accurately measure influence and caring.

“But it is a number that can find your friends, like thinkers and make you feel that you are talking to more than 3 people.” – Kris Smith.

Exactly. Mass voicemail.


“”The average blog has exactly one reader: the blogger.” – Eric Schmidt, CEO Google, via Jeff Jarvis

Thursday, 31 August 2006

Blogging Because Your Customers Expect It

“If you are in the Internet industry and you don’t have time to blog about your product then you should quit….by not blogging you basically are giving up and telling the market that you don’t care.” – Jason Calacanis

In 15 minutes, the same will be true in the political realm. In 30 minutes – everywhere else.

As I say in my Blogging for Small Business talks, blogging isn’t an additional thing. It’s a replacement for all the other communications; customer support, newsletters, product development, all that stuff currently in multiple, hard-to-update, un-searchable, systems.

Sunday, 4 June 2006

Trackbacks – A Better Reason to Not Have Comments

Seth Godin’s been getting some heat for not allowing comments on his blog posts (despite trackbacks being turned on.

Seth’s reason is something about not having time to respond to and “curate” each an every comment. Eh. Sure. But there’s a better reason. One consistent with Seth’s position and the fact that trackbacks, as I mentioned earlier, are turned on.

Comments (blog responses hosted on the original blog) don’t allow the comment-author to take ownership and responsibility for their statements. They can start a fire and leave, sticking the blog author with the mess to clean up.

Trackbacks on the other hand have all the benefits of comments without the drive-by issue. The pre-requisite being – the commenter needs a blog themselves. Not a terribly high obstacle these days. Plus, the comment is then presented to another group of readers – in addition to the readers of the original blog (i.e. readers of Godin’s blog see this and readers of the Work Better), thereby connecting communities via conversation.

Last November, 37Signals pulled comments from their popular Signal vs Noise blog. In my response posted at MNteractive, I used Seth Godin’s use of trackbacks as an example for 37Signals to follow.

To repeat myself here:

“[Trackbacks distribute] the conversation across many blogs rather than the hoisting the entire comment burden on the original blogger. Trackbacks eliminate the risk that one anonymous commenter will control the comment thread.”

Godin has no obligation to publish anyone’s views on his blog. Not even his own.

27 March 2007

“This is why I have no trouble whatsoever deleting anonymous comments. Identity matters. If people don’t feel the need to be held personally accountable for their words, I don’t want to talk to them.” – Hugh MacLeod

06 Nov 2007

“…unless you let me know what was up with deleting my comments.” – Steve Borsch

Dave Winer’s never been a big fan of comments on his blog. He doesn’t believe they’re necessary for something to be defined as a blog or for a conversation to occur. Steve’s complaint on his own blog proves that.

Sunday, 19 February 2006

Property History & Comments – Another Reason for Real Estate Agents to Blog

There’s been a few parties interested in our house, I’m surprised to learn from our agent how unstructured, the agent-to-agent feedback process is. Sounds like the listing agent has to initiate the contact with the showing agent, rather than the showing agent providing it by default.

As a seller, I want to know what prospective buyers are saying about the place – maybe there’s some small improvements that’ll make it more attractive? For the listing agent, the feedback helps refine the house’s marketing and positioning.

Blog comments and trackbacks automate this process, by collecting all the feedback on a given property in a single location – whether it’s written the listing agent’s blog or the showing agents’.

Extending this idea, houses themselves should have an ongoing blog, not only for buying/selling events, but documenting improvements (“when were new windows installed?”).

Jen says, “Oh, like”