Richard Nacht, of Blogging Systems, reported last week on how corporate blogs are expected to grow significantly, and there’s no doubt in my mind that blogging has crossed over well into the mainstream and will continue to do so a rapid pace.
Personally, I’ve been ‘blogging’ since 2002, when I began a travel diary while I was living and working in South Korea. For me, blogging was just an easy way to keep my friends and family up to date on our adventures. So, I still have to stop and still shake my head a little, when I see how quickly the platform is being adopted and pushed into the corporate environment. Frankly, the speed and degree at which this site gained momentum surprised me as well!
I often get questions to my email addresss (email@example.com) on how to start a blog. I usually point them to Dustin’s work over at Rain City Guide, who has covered the subject much more exhaustively and capably than I could.
But since this is a site about marketing, I thought I’d share three fairly novel ways to market your blog and grow your own mini-media empire.
1. Build a Squidoo Lens
Squidoo was, developed in part by marketing guru Seth Godin. It allows you to create a “lens” and become the webmaster on a particular topic. Through Squidoo you can begin to aggregate all kinds of content to your lens; starting with your own RSS feeds you can add Amazon books, Flickr photos, eBay auctions and much more to create the definitive resource on your subject.
Squidoo promise to share half of all advertising revenue generated by the lenses with its Lensmasters. You can even choose to donate all or part of your proceeds to charity. All of the proceeds from my Lens go to the Inner-City Scholarship Fund, for example.
2. Seed NewsVine
Created by Mike Davidson, Newsvine is a social news site which mixes news from traditional media entities and from individuals. The site includes many social functions including commenting, rankings and generate lively discussions around news items. Disregarding the traditional editorial roles, users are in command of submitting and promoting stories to the frontpage.
Like Squidoo, NewsVine allow you to become your own columnist and set up your own page in the site. Unfortunately, it’s not quite as automatic as Squidoo as you can’t just add your RSS feed to the mix. You have to submit each story individually to the ‘vine’ using a bookmarklet from your toolbar. However, I gotten quite a lot more traffic to my site from the stories I’ve submitted to NewsVine.
3. Start a BlogBurst Account
Blogburst is an RSS syndication network that includes top-tier media properties like the Washington Post, San Francisco Gate and Houston Chronicle. Acting much like a traditional news wire – once it accepts your blog into its network, Blogburst pushes your content out to its partner sites. You blog as usual and should one of them choose to pick up your post, they display a short summary of your writing and a byline link back to your site.
I only recently was accepted into Blogburst’s network and haven’t seen much traffic back from it yet.
Are there any other good sites I might have missed?