Our blog | Blogads

Archive for January, 2005


by henrycopeland
Thursday, January 13th, 2005

A new index of state and local political bloggers.

A business editor resigns.

A CEO blogs about his company’s Superbowl advertising purchase.

Blogads: a soaring return

by henrycopeland
Wednesday, January 12th, 2005

Beth Kirsch, who spearheads Audible.com’s online advertising, has a perceptive column today in Revenews. She writes: “ads need to be personal and leverage the conversation between the blogger and the user. Figure out how to do that, and you have a marketing channel with a soaring return on ad dollars spent (ROAS).”

Reporting your own demise

by henrycopeland
Tuesday, January 11th, 2005

Kudos to the NYTimes for shredding its own industry, including sister paper Boston Globe, with an article about artificial circulation practices. (What kinda dirt is the WSJ going to dig up about NYT now?)

Across the country each week, more than 1.6 million people who are not on newspaper subscriber rolls are being delivered copies that did not cost them a cent – but they are still being classified as paying customers, an analysis by The New York Times has found. The papers, which are typically paid for by advertisers, are delivered by small and large dailies across the country, including The Miami Herald, The Wall Street Journal, The San Jose Mercury News and The Boston Globe.

The unsolicited deliveries were made possible by rule changes the newspaper industry approved three years ago. The new rules allowed so-called third-party sales – which the industry once shunned – to be counted as part of a newspaper’s total circulation. Without them, many newspapers would be losing circulation at a far higher rate. In the industry as a whole, circulation has been falling for a decade or more.

Maintaining the appearance of healthy circulation has been critical to newspapers at a time when the industry is losing advertisers to other media, like the Web and television. Because paid circulation determines in large part what publishers can charge for advertising – the lifeblood of an estimated $58 billion industry – any deep sustained losses threaten to erode the already shaken confidence of marketers and investors.

The article includes an anecdote about free papers passed out in a Salem, Va hospital, a wonderful ironic mirroring of the plight of the newspaper industry itself. “While some papers were left at the foots of beds of people too ill to respond, others were snapped up by patients like Thomas DeBusk Jr., 80, whose bright white hair and deep tan belied the fact that he had been in the hospital three times over the last few months for heart problems. ‘I check the obituaries each morning to see if I’m in there,’ Mr. DeBusk said.”


by henrycopeland
Friday, January 7th, 2005

Triangle bloggers get together.

Malcolm Gladwell in Durham on Feb. 24.

Pete Lerma highlights the “horizontal” rather than top down potential of blog advertising: “It seems there’s an incredible synergy that could be realized between viral marketing and online media. Given the right campaign and the right audience, media can be a tremendous tool to help get the viral ball rolling, and viral marketing techniques can be used to extend the life of online media campaigns.”

To the degree that most advertising is still, like the publishing model it evolved with, top down, marketers who look for opportunities to converse with humans rather than “message to audiences” will have a big advantage. As Cluetrain put it:

“These markets are conversations. Their members communicate in language that is natural, open, honest, direct, funny and often shocking. Whether explaining or complaining, joking or serious, the human voice is unmistakably genuine. It can’t be faked.

Most corporations, on the other hand, only know how to talk in the soothing, humorless monotone of the mission statement, marketing brochure, and your-call-is-important-to-us busy signal. Same old tone, same old lies. No wonder networked markets have no respect for companies unable or unwilling to speak as they do.

But learning to speak in a human voice is not some trick, nor will corporations convince us they are human with lip service about “listening to customers.” They will only sound human when they empower real human beings to speak on their behalf.

While many such people already work for companies today, most companies ignore their ability to deliver genuine knowledge, opting instead to crank out sterile happytalk that insults the intelligence of markets literally too smart to buy it.”

Predictions ’05

by henrycopeland
Friday, January 7th, 2005

Blogs will continue to set the pace for news. We’ll read lots of stories about baseball bloggers, tech bloggers, gay bloggers leading the charge on important stories within their niches.

Meanwhile, alarmed publishers will continue to complain about irresponsible, untrained journalists, suggesting that they be regulated.

Consumers worried that their digital photos will be lost in a decade in archaic hard-drive crypts will turn to online photo hosting services promising to keep people’s photos in usable formats. The services will raise prices and wisely rebrand as “digital photo curators.”

Walmart or Ikea will begin selling pre-fab houses.

We’ll see a boomlet of Internet entrepreneurs doing the online Atlantic arbitrage, exporting their VATless electronic services and goods into Europe for expensive Euros.

Starbucks will open an experimental “executive lounge” coffee shop, with upscale amenities for entrepreneurs and business people.

One of the big academic journal publishers suddenly fold, as libraries and academics desert expensive musty print en mass for online peer reviewed journals.

India will leave the back office and take the lead in innovation and new market creation. Watch out for the Bill Gates or Andy Grove of Bangalore.

Blogads à la mode

by henrycopeland
Thursday, January 6th, 2005

Blog advertising covered by Le Figaro, France’s leading paper. “Lus par des passionnés, des personnes éduquées, les blogs offrent des cibles de choix aux annonceurs. A force de fréquentation, certaines pages, et ceux qui les animent, sont élevées au rang de stars de la blogosphère, attirant autant de nouveaux lecteurs.”

Weekend weather

by henrycopeland
Wednesday, January 5th, 2005

the more Wallace studied the models, the more he became convinced that something wicked was coming this way. …the more Wallace studied the models, the more he became convinced that something wicked was coming this way.

Ink on Blogads

by henrycopeland
Wednesday, January 5th, 2005

Mediapost: “Blog Readership Up In ’04; Advertisers Not Sold.” John Montgomery, CEO of WPP Group’s mOne North America notes, “the blogs generating all the buzz are those that our clients think too risky to associate with.” Funnily enough, MediaPost’s fairly downbeat article has spawned more calls from ad agencies than the average.

And today’s Financial Times article “Niche appeal of the blogging business” gives blog advertising lots of positive ink, though I’m tagged as CEO of DailyKos. Richard Turner of TBS offers a good strategic overview of his “Vote Carrie” blogad campaign: “First, he says, it injected a note of levity into rather po-faced political blogs and exposed TBC to new audiences. Plus, he adds, the cutting-edge character of blogs can create a buzz akin to word-of-mouth; some of the medium’s techno-hipness can rub off on the product.”

Mirrored tombstone

by henrycopeland
Wednesday, January 5th, 2005

Ever notice that the Times likes to illustrate its obituaries of artists with images that are both created by AND resemble the deceased? I clipped a bunch of examples of this in the 80s, but have no idea where that file is. So now I’ll start the file here:

Alfred E. Neuman

Frank Kelly Freas

Year end trip and reading

by henrycopeland
Tuesday, January 4th, 2005

We had a great trip to NYC last week. Lines were horrendous as furners lined up to blow cheap $s. But the touristic cliches — Statue of Liberty and Empire State Building — were worth it. Breakfast every morning at the 3 star coffee shop on 86th street. We each loved Slava’s Snowshow and brought home lots of confetti. We snuck into MOMA, the Met, the Museum of Natural History and the Guggenheim. (Does anyone but me think its creepy to celebrate the beauty of art of Aztec culture, which is one of history’s most methodically brutal?) Dinner with the Gages. Overheard a 8-year-old’s comment about a 17 year old: “Jesse has attitude… what’s attitude?” And this comment about a 87-year-old: “She drives badly, but she drives fast.

New year’s reading:

Ken Layne should be selling postcards of nature and dogs.

A self-described smallfry blogger complains about the Country Music Awards and gets flamed by a music industry honcho. flamed (Via Matt Welch.)

Finally, I’ve been rereading the Loyalty Effect, one of my favorite books. The book is all about how profitable, fun business depends on customer longevity, which depends in turn on intelligent, long-term staff, which (interesting but obvious once you think about it), in turn, depend on very patient owners (not public shareholders!) Owners/staff/customers sticking around 10 years rather than 5 makes a company 3 to 20 times more profitable. Basically, the idea of accrued interest applies in all three cases — a little growth every year adds up and everyone in the chain gets smarter, easier to deal with and more profit-generating.

(I’ve just realized that one of the fundemantal problems with volatile inflation is that it disrupts this long-term planning, tempting people to grab today’s dollar rather than wait patiently for a hard-to-value $1.13 next year.)

Our Tweets