I understand that today’s Ottawa Citizen was billed as the “Blogging Issue”. In a story by Alexandra Zabjek, the notion of “Blogging for Dollar$” (i.e. accepting advertising or inducements to mention products on personal blogs) was all jumbled up together with corporate blogging. Two pretty big topics in a small space, but I would like to briefly address the first issue by pointing out the following thing:

Some bloggers will bemoan the state of the blogosphere, wherein ads are placed on personal blogs and bloggers are paid money based on their pageviews or unique visitors or whatever. These people are silly and will soon be drowned out by the vast swelling of bloggers eager to cash in. HOWEVER. Blog readers may or may not play along. So you advertising people? Get creative. We need some cool new models for the new space – there will always be a market for your ad dollars if you can do this. (Who knows? The new model may be a reverse of the usual supply and demand – only the best creative, as deemed suitable by top bloggers, will be able to buy space. Not as far-fetched as you might think; top blogs don’t often have to answer to shareholders or meet payroll…)

Now on to the second issue, which is really my focus (talk about burying your lead!) I was very encouraged by the intelligent reasoning re: why blogging is good for firms from Alec Saunders the CEO of iotum, an Ottawa-area communications software company:

“It evolved into a marketing tool for the company when I realized that instead of spending lots of time going out and educating industry analysts or writing white papers on different things, I could simply write a blog entry and it would be read – by my customers and by the press people that I wanted to influence.”

Zabjek goes on to point out that Saunders’ blog is one of the Technorati Top-10 on the topic of VoIP (actually, right now he’s #13, as sorted by authority, but his last post was 15 hours ago, so if he posts again today it may jump back into the Top 10 again), lending credibility and making Saunders a virtual industry expert. And “that translates into recognition for our company,” says Saunders.

Which kind of gets us back to the topic of the ROI of Blogs, doesn’t it?

[side note: I'm off and away now until Monday - which is Thanksgiving here in Canada - so sit tight, I posted twice for you today, hopefully that will tide you over until Tuesday!]

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