September 23, 2014

How to Restart a Blog When You’ve Been on Hiatus for Three Years

Posted by: of Stephan on 05/14/13

I left my blog dormant for a few years, but I’m finally back in the saddle! I drafted up a post entitled “How to Restart a Blog When You’ve Been on Hiatus for Three Years” because it seemed fitting. Here are my main points to get you started:

1. Jump in and write something. No apologies. Or a lengthy explanation or justification for being off the grid.

2. Get some tools or processes in place that will make it as painless as possible to post. Like Dragon – which incidentally is available as an iPhone/iPad app.

3. Hire a virtual assistant if that will help you. (More on using VA’s in a future post).

4. Roll out a site redesign at the same time to let everybody know you’re reengaged and committed.

5. Don’t try to get all your readers all caught up on your life all in one post. You’ve got plenty of fodder for many blog posts – so save it for later.

6. Finally, silence the perfectionist in you. I have this bad habit of pouring over my blog posts – my articles even more so – trying to make them perfect. I put a dozen hours or more into articles on search engine land. That’s crazy. That’s not good use of your time. Much better to freeze all those great ideas and insights stuck in your head – share them with the world. It’s okay if the sentence structure isn’t always on the mark. It’s a blog post for Pete’s sake.

Extend Your Blog’s Reach with a Blidget

Blidget is a new tool/service/offering from Widgetbox that allows you to create a widget out of your blog. (What is it about Web 2.0 that requires every new tool to have a celebrity couple name?)

By turning your blog into a widget you can make it easier for people to syndicate your content while still maintaining some of your branding. Creating a Blidget only takes a few minutes, and depending on your blog software, installing it may be a one-click affair.

If you’d like to add BBC’s widget to your own blog, click below:

Get this widget from Widgetbox

Is RSS Good for Your Enterprise?

Good article over at eWeek called “RSS Offers Relief from Enterprise E-Mail Overload.”

It talks about how email has fallen out of favor as a way of distributing information to large groups of people, and how certain businesses are starting to use RSS.

The article also covers some negatives of RSS, including:

  • Problems with adoption and inertia from some users
  • How RSS feeds can reduce page visits, and
  • How RSS can create bandwidth bottlenecks for popular feeds.

This definitely isn’t one of those “email is dead” articles, but instead shows how forward thinking companies are looking to RSS as a new distribution channel.

RSS and Permission Marketing 2.0

Just wanted to point your attention to another in a great series of posts from Brian Clark of Copyblogger.

This one’s called Permission Marketing 2.0, a riff on Seth Godin’s Permission Marketing and the fact that anything being revisited today needs to have a 2.0 on it to be taken seriously. Kind of like dot com in the late nineties.

One of my favorite lines…

Somewhere along the way, people became overly obsessed with search and forgot everything else. Many businesses today would disappear if their rankings tanked. And that’s no way to run a business.

Too true.

So what is PM2.0? It’s all about RSS my friends. Read on….

How to Subscribe to a Blog Feed

For many of you this may seem basic, but there’s a first time for everything….

Have you ever wondered how us “blogging experts” keep up on dozens or even hundreds of blogs a day? Do we visit dozens or hundreds of Web sites a day hoping that each one has posted new, worthwhile post(s)? Don’t we have lives? Don’t we have businesses to run?!?

The answer is that we subscribe to the feed from these blogs and collect them in one central location. I prefer NetNewsWire (Mac only!) while others prefer the browser-based Bloglines.

Unfortunately, subscribing to a blog feed is counter-intuitive. The very action we’ve been trained to do with Pavlovian perfection–clicking on a link–instead presents us with a page of XML mumbo-jumbo.

To that end, I’ve put together this little movie (at 10.2 MB it’s actually not that little) that walks you through the subscription process. Soon you’ll be able to subscribe to blogs with the best of ‘em, keeping up on important industry information and staying ahead of your competition.

How to Subscribe to a Blog Feed: The Movie!

Bloglines Looking for Director

Posted by: of Blogging Systems Group on 12/15/06

When I opened Bloglines the other day to check my feeds I saw a notice about an opening for a director position to oversee future development of the app.

As you probably know, Bloglines was acquired back in February by Ask.com. Bloglines creator Mark Fletcher assumed the director position, but left the company in June to pursue other interests.

I’ve written an op/ed on my Allbusiness.com blog, Strategic Business Blogging, so let me invite you to read that post as well.

How can we help you understand the power of RSS?

Posted by: of A View from the Isle on 11/1/06

One thing I learned during Blog Business Summit is that for most people RSS is over their heads, like Goodyear blimp over their heads.  This isn’t their fault, it’s ours.  We, as the blogi masters, just haven’t done enough to help people get it (or “grok” it as I like to say).

Anita Campbell has an article in Inc Technology that brings it all down to this: “The simple reality is:  RSS still has far too much geek factor.”

The question is, then, what can we do about it?  I think it comes down to two things, education and application.

First we have to educate people what it is, how it really works, how to look for it on sites, and how to subscribe.  Then we need, we absolutely need to show people why it is so important.  Why it can save them time and help them in their day-to-day jobs.

Read on at Bloggers For Hire.

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Lowdown with Chris Pirillo

Posted by: of Online Marketing Blog on 10/15/06

At the Search Engine Strategies conference in New York earlier this year, I had a chance to start doing an interview with super blogger, past TechTV host and organizer of the Gnomedex conference, Chris Pirillo. It was to be a video interview with my new Sony Cybershot, but I didn’t have very much memory left and the interview was cut short. I’ve since corrected the problem with a 4gb and another 2gb memory stick for almost 2 1/2 hours of decent quality video on two postage stamp sized chips.

Six months later I finally reconnected with Chris (which is amazing since we’re on IM) and was able to ask him a variety of questions ranging from social media to RSS. Here’s a snippet:

“In this interview, Chris talks about his TagJag project, web traffic from social media, favorite conferences, plans for Lockergnome 2.0, his upcoming wedding with fiancee Ponzi and fun quotes like: “Google is the internetâ€?, “Email is deadâ€? and “Let’s not blog about blogging about blogging about blogs anymore, okay?â€?.”

I can appreciate the enthusiasm for RSS, but I don’t think email is dead by a longshot. RSS to email at least. In fact, during dinner last night with “Mr. RSS” himself, Rok Hrastnik and I talked about RSS being too easy to use and that it can get to a point of information overload. The closest solution is the “river of news” concept, but how many good solutions are there for that?

If you would like all the Q/A with Chris Pirillo, here is the full interview.

Speaking of RSS, if you are at the DMA 06 conference this week, be sure to check out the blogs, RSS and podcasting session from 4:30-5:30, room 135 in the Moscone North building with Stephan Spencer, Amanda Watlington and myself.

Also, there is the RSS Roundtable meeting on Tuesday night sponsored by Pheedo, PRWeb, SimpleFeed and Silverpop downtown San Francisco which should be a good discussion.

Knock, knock. Is anyone reading my blog?

Posted by: of A View from the Isle on 10/3/06

BBS 06 Speaker BugWell Dave already spilled the beans (here and here), yep I’m speaking at BBS at the end of the month.  The question is, then, just what the heck am I speaking about.  RSS Metrics.  Oh boy, yeah.  I wrote a bit about it on my blog already, but essentially what I’m going to help people work out is how to measure their audience on their blog.  This, btw, is no mean feat.  The reason Feedburner has been so successful is that they do give those metrics.  But, my talk isn’t going to just be “Use Feedburner.  Thank you.  Any questions?”.  That’s more than a little lame.  Don’t ask me how I’m going to simplify the discussion, because I’m still noodling that around in my head (ouch).

The reason, besides I was stupid enough to agree, that I’m talking about RSS metrics (and maybe blog metrics in general), is that as businesses get into blogs, bosses want to know what impact the blog is having.  Who is reading it, how often, when, what …  And while it might seem easy to dismiss these things, it really isn’t.  It is important.

If you are interested in biz blogging, BBS (as Dave said) is a great time to learn and network.  Pick the brains of folks already doing it.  Hang out with fun folks and just bask in the general blogginess.  I know that after BBS you will have a ton of new ideas and ways to start blogging or improve your blogging.   Now let me sweeten the pot a bit.  If you want to go I have a discount code for you worth $100 off any package.  When you register use code LCAS06 and the discount is yours.  There are deals to be had for hotel rooms (I use Hotwire myself) and I’ll be there Tuesday night and for the workshops and conferences.  Stop by and say hi.  I’m sure Dave and I will be hanging out somewhere chatting (look for the tall guy with the beard and the shorter geeky guy with glasses).

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New RSS Ad Program Feedvertising

Posted by: of Online Marketing Blog on 09/29/06

Feedvertising

A new blog/RSS advertising option has launched this week from the folks at Text Link Ads called Feedvertising, which is a service that allows you to monetize your RSS feeds with ads. Text Link Ads will sell the ads for you, or as is the case with my blog, I combine links to my an affiliate program with Marketing Sherpa along with a few ads sold by Text Link Ads.

Not only is Feedvertising a potential source of revenue for blogs, but it’s also a clever way to cross promote other areas of your blog, company web site or other web sites that you publish.

Here is a tutorial on Feedvertising over at Tubetorial that explains how it works or you can check out the Feedvertising web site.

Co-founder of Text Link ads Andy Hagans took a few minutes to answer a few questions about Feedvertising for me. Basically Andy says Feedvertising is a way to give RSS feed publishers a lot more control over ads and the market is still very new.

What prompted you to develop this tool?

Advertising via RSS is a small but emerging market. We took a look at existing products and didn’t see anything that was very impressive, from a blogger or advertiser standpoint: pricing was often confusing and inefficient; the ads were often graphical or JavaScript-based, resulting in banner-blindness; and finally, most systems left bloggers without any control over what ads ended up in their feed.

We developed Feedvertising with the idea that bloggers should be able to monetize their RSS feeds while maintaining complete control; i.e., they can manually add their own ads or promotions, or sell space through the TLA system, or do a combination of both.

What kind of earning potential is there for advertisers and what’s the business model for Text Link Ads with this tool?

The business model for TLA is to help monetize those feeds where the blogger chooses to do so through the TLA system. We think the earning potential is great, as reaching the influencers who use RSS is a very important marketing objective for companies who are trying to gain mindshare among early adopters or bloggers. Right now we are testing the price points, so the exact numbers will probably change over time.

What do you think of the RSS advertising market? What are some innovative uses of RSS where advertising might be most productive? ie, advertising on a blog feed is one thing, advertising on a new product RSS feed is another.

Again, this market is pretty immature, but so are all marketing channels in the beginning. Our goal is to stay innovative as this channel evolves and expands. As long as we stay commited to delivering value to both bloggers and advertisers, the feature set should move naturally with that.

What kinds of blogs are best suited for this kind of advertising? What kind of traffic should a blog/RSS feed be getting in terms of hits or subscribers before it makes sense to advertise?

Without getting into numbers, it really comes down to advertiser demand. If your blog has a smaller number of RSS subscribers, but those subscribers are mostly business executives (or any other valuable audience segment), there is still going to be demand from the advertising side.

That said, we think Feedvertising is a great product for ANY blog, even a new one or one with small readership; at the very least, you can use Feedvertising to cross-promote your own feature pages, or other sites.

There are other great reviews of Feedvertising at TechCrunch and Problogger.

A Blog Conversation

Posted by: of One By One Media on 09/12/06

An interesting development transpired here at BBC, a blog conversation broke out.  BBC contributor Stephan Spencer’s post PR Firms Comment Spamming? began a small conversation with the VP of Connors Communications.  Stephan had assumed a comment left on his blog about the long tail was a PR firm touting the latest client’s software program.  Although Stephan was mistaken in his assumption, through the use of blog mining or RSS (now I’m assuming), Mike Levin the person that left the comment, was able to correct his mistake.  In fact Mike was touting the application he had developed for Connors Communications. 

An open conversation was the result, and although Stephan and Mike may disagree on the use of comments on a blog, it is clear that their exchange was civil, and exactly what companies can use a blog to develop, an open commuincation with their customer or clients. 

Sorry Mike, now it’s my turn to provide some feedback.  After going to the Connors website, I wanted to rush to read your blog since you had indicated you were a passionate blogger in your comment.  I looked far and wide and could not seem to locate that blog.  On a whim I decided to check out the hard to find navigational site map link and searched a long time again before I found the link to your company blog.  You are correct by stating in the comments here:

I read many blogs, and sometimes I am compelled to leave comments, just as comments on our blog are welcome. I think if you read a few of my blog posts, you will find me to be sincere and on the level.

I read a few of your blog posts and you are definitely on the level and sincere.  The problem or at least what made it difficult was the navigation to your blog.  If you don’t make it easy to access those blog posts people may never get to find your wisdom.  A simple “Read Our Weblog” button or link in the top left with the rest of the navigation would prove to be beneficial to you and Connors Communications.

Great job gentleman and lets keep up the blogging conversation.

Blogs, Podcasts, RSS and B2B: New Research Study Available

KnowledgeStorm and Universal McCann have begun to release an emerging media series study into how blogs, podcasts and other RSS technologies affect technology purchasing decisions.

So far only the podcasting study has been released (free with registration), but they’ve released some teaser factoids:

  • 53% of respondants get business and technology information from blogs
  • 59% of business and IT professionals are somewhat or very familiar with RSS
  • 70% pass along content from blogs

Of course, they don’t go into detail (at least yet) on whether these people are making a buying decision on what they read at Engadget, or whether an RSS feed is helping them choose the right server or keeping them up with last night’s episode of Lost.

You can read the abstract and register for the free report here.

Thanks to Media Buyer Planner for the link.

Facebook News Feeds. Oh,You Were Expecting PRIVACY…

Posted by: of Made for Marketing on 09/8/06

The web works quickly, as so noted by Wendy Davis in her column today “Just An Online Minute… Facebook’s About-Face“. No sooner did Facebook put up their “News Feed” and “Mini-Feed” to keep users alerted about changes in their friends’ profiles through the magic of RSS than they were feeling the wrath of over 500,000 social netizens breathing down their neck to stop the privacy invasion. All this great publicity (and a 6%+ response rate – 500K of 9M, not bad numbers! Enough to make any direct marketer blush) thanks, in part, to the folks at Students Against Facebook News Feed.

The group has, however, issued a statement basically telling people to ‘back off’, as Facebook has impelmented satisfactory changes to it’s privacy policy.

The group’s initial impression is that Facebook has implimented most of the privacy changes that we asked for. We never believed Mark Zuckerberg was out to hurt people and that his corporation had nothing but good intentions when they launched news feed and mini-feed.

My take on this whole thing, which is obviously one-sided, is that this whole situation was a bit overblown and really shows the power of the social media zeitgeist when it’s way, way out of control.

Think about this. Plaxo has been doing this for years. I get emails all the time from them telling me that someone’s updated their content (though, it usually comes from my computer with the Plaxo toolbar installed). I also see this every time I log in to LinkedIn. In fact, just today, I can tell you who, of my connections, added friend and connections (and who they were!), updated their profiled, added their blog URL and other various administrative tasks. Tell me, what seperates these from the Facebook ordeal?

I say, there’s not much difference here, just a difference of perception. For some reason, that I’ve not the time to dive deep into here, the current generation of Facebook users (cursory view – there’s only one other person from my graduating university class on facebook..most everyone else is ’05 – ’10) have a warped perception that there’s privacy online. Really, since when? Google has your life in a box (and a well organized one at that). So what if your friends see that you added a new picture, seriously, with the volume of stuff (my experience with LinkedIn and Plaxo) coming though, it’s not like anyone will care anyway.

In the wise words of one Sun MicroSystems CEO, Scott McNealy “Privacy is dead, deal with it.â€? While I wouldn’t go so far as to say “dead”, there is a movement going on in the “identity” space, privacy certainly is not something you expect in an online social network (at least, not in this day and age, and not from Gen X)
The lesson that I take away, and the reason that we’re so in love with RSS (or News Feeds, Mini-Feeds, whatever…) is that it’s all about CONSUMER CONTROL and OPT-IN. Think about that the next time you lauch a great feature. (especially to a rabid community of 9 million). It’s that simple. Facebook made a quick about face, and was able to save face (sorry, couldn’t resist) here by implementing some very swift policy changes. Kudos to them for listening and reacting!

RSS is a great tool, just like every other great tool on the Internet, but it’s the best kind of tool when the user has the controls. If Facebook gives the controls to the users (and they know how to use them), we’ll see News Feeds come back in style on Facebook.

More info: WSJ (free article) New Facebook Features
Have Members in an Uproar

Tracking the buzz on the blogosphere

Posted by: of A View from the Isle on 08/16/06

From iMediaConnection this morning comes some hints at how to track the buzz around you and your business on the blogosphere.  The tips and techniques are good ones, but they miss a couple important things.  First let’s look at the metrics they suggest:

  • Technorati: Blogs linking to your site
  • Technorati: Total incoming links to your site
  • Bloglines: Citation search total
  • Analytics: Pageviews
  • Analytics: New Visitors
  • Analytics: Repeat visitors
  • Analytics: Referrals
  • Analytics: Organic
  • Analytics: Direct
  • Datasource: New Members/Subscribers/Customers
  • Datasource: Revenues from (direct sales/affiliates/partners/resellers/etc.)
  • Alexa: Weekly rank
  • Email: Opens
  • Email: Clickthroughs
  • Email: Forwards

Super.  Lot’s more here than just bloggy buzz, but let’s run with it.  Since I’m in charge of the metrics stuff at Qumana, well I’m usually up to my elbows in all this data.  So … what’s missing?  Well first an RSS reader.  The blogosphere is about immediacy if nothing else and you have to keep on top of it.  You need to subscribe to the RSS feeds provided by Technorati, Google, etc to be able to react and contribute to the conversation.  Bloglines and Lektora (disclosure I work for the company that makes Lektora) are two good choices.  Then for buzz and conversation measurement I really like BlogPulse.  Here is an example of a BlogPulse trend search comparing me (Tris Hussey), Debbie Weil, and Rick Bruner:

What this shows is that, well, sorry Rick … but no one is talking about you.  I tend to be talked more about than Debbie, except recently because Debbie just launched her book (man I gotta get cracking!).  Imagine doing this for your brand, CEO, competitors.  Something like this:

This compares Qumana (my company) to Ecto and Microsoft’s new Live Writer.  As you can see Qumana is talked about more than Ecto, but Live Writer is clearly a blogosphere darling at the moment.

Bottom line: check out the analytics article (there are good suggestions there), start subscribing to RSS, and add BlogPulse to your toolkit for some fast measurements on the bloggy buzz

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Follow up: Practical things to do with RSS

Posted by: of A View from the Isle on 07/26/06

Do you RSS?  Lots of businesses wonder what blogging can do for their business.  Even more wonder about the mysterious RSS syndication format.  From WebProNews comes 11 Practical Uses for RSS in Business.

  1. Use Your Own Content
  2. News Headlines
  3. Upcoming Events
  4. Thoughts/Commentary
  5. Articles
  6. New Products
  7. Weekly/Monthly Specials
  8. Newsletters
  9. New Links
  10. New Members
  11. Ticker RSS Feeds
  12. Using Content From OTHER Web Sites

What do all of these have in common?  Simple, effective, easy transmission of information.  Concrete things you can do to ignite your presence on the web.  Some of these require something like blogging.  Putting out news, analysis, opinion, and events are made easier when you have a blog because RSS is de facto built into blogs, but things like a news ticker can be made from easily and freely available scripts and services.

So what are you waiting for?

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bk_keywords:RSS,blog,business blog,corporate blog.
–>

Leaving Email Behind

Posted by: of billflitter on 07/21/06

Steve Rubel links to an AP article today about how younger email users are favoring other newer forms of communication like social networking sites, instant messaging and text messaging – and they see email as “a good way to reach an elder – a parent, teacher or a boss – or to receive an attached file.”

Email’s problems have caught up to it, and the early adopters and the more tech savvy younger generation have been quick to catch on and are looking elsewhere for more appropriate communication mediums:

“And there is a very strong sense that the migration away from e-mail continues,” says Lee Rainie, the director at Pew.

For many young people, it’s about choosing the best communication tool for the situation.

As email emerged as a mainstream form of communication, we still used the phone, but transferred many phone tasks to email. Some things just didn’t need to be done by phone, and in fact, worked better over email.

The same goes for email and new communication mediums, but now email represents the phone and people are transferring tasks away from email by using other technologies like RSS and text messaging.

Email is not going away, it still has plenty of uses, but people are thinking outside the inbox and adopting new technologies .

Business Spending on RSS to Rise

Posted by: of Online Marketing Blog on 05/17/06

JupiterResearch has published a new report, “RSS Comes of Age” that finds 63 percent of large companies planning to syndicate content via RSS by the end of this year. This growth is surprising in contrast to the low “perceived” adoption rate of RSS.

“The primary challenge to greater adoption is a lack of experience with RSS and resources to deploy it,” said David Schatsky, President of JupiterKagan. “However, recent offerings from e-mail service providers (ESP) and RSS service providers are lowering the barrier for feed management, deployment and measurement.”

Reading this summary reminds me of the research report offered by Yahoo and Ipsos Insight (pdf):

“27% of Internet users consume RSS syndicated content on personalized start pages (e.g., My Yahoo!, My MSN) without knowing that RSS is the enabling technology.”

So perhaps this explains the use of “percieved” in reference to adoption rates? Many users of RSS don’t realize they are. Regardless, RSS is a fantastic tool for communication and marketing and is one of the most distinguishing features of a blog.

NYC Event: SS Roundtable Dinner (May 16th)

Posted by: of ExecutiveSummary.com on 05/10/06

RSS ad specialist Pheedo together with SilverPop, iUpload and PRWeb, are hosting a dinner roundtable on the topic of RSS advertising. Details here. This follows on a similar event they hosted earlier this month in San Francisco.

Survey on Marketing with RSS

Posted by: of Online Marketing Blog on 05/5/06

Are you curious about RSS industry benchmark metrics and RSS marketing best practices? Would you like to compare your RSS marketing results with those of your peers? Then you will be interested in the 2006 RSS Marketing Survey being conducted by MarketingStudies.net.

From the survey sponsor:

“Participate in the 2006 RSS Marketing Survey, conducted by MarketingStudies.net and aiming to research the RSS marketing landscape, to receive a free copy of the full 2006 RSS Marketing Survey Report, bringing you top RSS marketing best practices and metrics to compare your RSS marketing practices with those of your peers, to improve your RSS marketing results.”

Respondents will get a copy of the overview report including metrics and best practices.

MarketingStudies.net is run by RSS Marketing guru, Rok Hrastnik, who is the author of “Unleashing the Marketing and Publishing Power of RSS“. He also publishes a free report, “The Business Case for RSS“.

Rok and I did an interview in March 2005 on using integrated online PR, blogs and RSS for improved results in search engines. After re-listening to that interview, it’s amazing how much can change in a year. At the time, using Technorati tags and social bookmarks was pretty new. Now they are pretty standard fare from the smorgasboard of tactics for blog link building.

If you’re attending the ACCM conference next week in Chicago, you can see Rok Hrastnik in action duing a a session called, “RSS What marketers need to know“. At the same conference, I’ll be speaking on the “15 Sizzling Hot Search Ideas for Merchants” session.

For anyone involved with using RSS for marketing, then be sure to take the 2006 RSS Marketing Survey. There’s an opportunity to share your case study which may be included in Rok’s next book and your experience with RSS may help further this channel for marketing and communication.

RSS Industry Night Roundtable II – Ad:tech San Francisco

Posted by: of Made for Marketing on 04/10/06

Coinciding with Ad:Tech San Francisco April 26-28, the RSS Industry Night Roundtable II aims to assemble a group of the top thought leaders in the RSS industry to discuss key topics that challenge all of us in RSS Advertising. This group will span the disciplines of RSS advertising, RSS manufacture, RSS aggregators and readers, and RSS purveyors and luminaries.

The event is free and seating is limited to 40 people. The event is sponsored by iUpload, PRWeb and Pheedo.

The first RSS Roundtable dinner, brought together some of the pioneers in RSS marketing and services including, Yahoo!, Microsoft, eBay, NewsGator, Simplefeed, Pubsub, Feedburner, Pheedo and Forrester.

The intent of this meeting is to discuss a number of key issues facing our industry and it’s chances for continued success. This meeting will also serve as a vehicle for our key industry partners to discuss mutual challenges and viable solutions, as well as come to a mutual understanding of goals and objectives that we all have for the RSS advertising space. Lastly, we will have an opportunity to collaborate, as leaders in the industry, on how we can increase the rate of RSS adoption among information consumers. Case studies on RSS advertising success will also be presented. Attendees will also be encouraged to share their stories.

Where: San Francisco, 10-15 minute walk from Moscone (location of Ad:Tech). Event location details will be sent to interested parties.
Time: 6:30PM – 9:30PM
Date: April 27 (second day of Ad:Tech)
Cost: Free dinner sponsored by iUpload, PRWeb, Pheedo, cash bar
RSVP:: Send an email to bill AT Pheedo.com with your name, email, telephone and company name/address

Topics:
There are so many topics that we can collectively address as an industry, however, it’s critical that we focus on the important few that address issues of RSS growth and adoption.

We will focus on key industry issues that are preventing business adoption of RSS. Below are the high-level issues that we’ll cover. At the end of the document are additional topics that can be discussed if there is additional time.

–> Lack of standardized RSS metrics
–> Lack of presentable case studies and best practices
–> IRSS mass syndication
–> Actual RSS penetration
–> Rich-media advertising

Attendees:
Ideally, the event will attract around 40 high level leaders from within the RSS and Advertising industries including the following disciplines.

RSS Manufacturer
RSS Advertising
RSS Readers
RSS Services
RSS Convergence
RSS Research

If you are interested in attending, please send an email to bill AT Pheedo.com with your name, email, telephone and company name/address.

RSS *Yawn*

Posted by: of ExecutiveSummary.com on 04/4/06

With our recent posts on RSS, I figured I’d weigh in with a quick opinion of my own. I know its heretical for a blogger to say so, but I think RSS is vastly over-hyped. To that end, I’m happy to point out Dave Taylor’s recent post where he points out an obvious truth: most RSS readers suck.

Here’s a brave admission: I don’t use any RSS reader. I haven’t for a couple of years. I tried various ones here and there, but ultimately I come back to the fact that I just don’t have time to keep up with all that information, and I’m an information junkie, blogger and researcher. I don’t know how the rest of you do it. I have simply don’t have an extra hour every day to scan the posts of the 200 blogs I love. I barely have time to read the industry sites that cover my sector (Internet advertising). Basically, I try to scan MarketingVOX daily, and then spend 2-3 hours with email and then, if I have any time left, I try to actually do some work. I’d love to read more blogs, but where do you fit it in? I’m sleeping only six hours a night as it is. I’m a drop-by blog reader; I cycle through my favorites here and there where I have time andbrowse their archives.
But it’s one thing for a blogger to admit this (and those who follow my blogging know that I’m also a catch-as-catch-can blogger, not a daily machine like some people). But what the hell does an ordinary person need with RSS? A blogger, a trend watcher, a journalist, or just info junkies, I can see the point of why they use RSS. But that accounts for the 5% of the population that already uses RSS. Why on earth would my mom need an RSS reader?

Here’s what baffles me most about RSS and the blogosphere: for all the excitement about about RSS as a reader subscription feature, it’s been virtually ignored by blog software tools as a true syndication mechanism. Why isn’t it a standard feature of every blog publishing tool that you can customize the resyndication of your other favorite blogs? E.g., I’d like flexible controls to put in the margin of my blogs up-to-the-minute headlines (or short posts, or long posts) from my favorite five (or 10, or 20) blogs. I tried to do this two years ago and all I found was some university hack. I suspect there are (but don’t actually know of) some more mature widgets out there that let you do this now, as I’ve seen it here and there on other blogs, but it’s certainly not widespread. It would be like blogrolling on crack. Seems like a no-brainer. Is there a WordPress plug-in for that?

(Of course, what blog publishing tools really need is the ability to aggregate posts and publishing them as an email newsletter, but, as Molly Shannon memorably said, don’t even get me started…)

 

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