Steve Rubel had a rather nasty reaction to my free Viral Copy report. It’s obvious he hasn’t actually read it, because if he had, he wouldn’t be able to make the completely wrong-headed assertions that he does. But what I really don’t understand is his intra-day flip-flop on the subject of traffic.
With all the recent buzz surrounding Technorati’s State of the Blogosphere, the Magic Middle, New York Magazine’s A-List love fest, the resulting A-List denial fest, and the latest Google page-rank shuffle, links are on everyone’s minds.
We’ve had it beaten into us – links matter. I suppose if you look closely enough, what’s being said is links are all that matters.
Of course, content is what really matters. Content that gets links, according to the gatekeepers.
So, I’ve written a free 30 page report containing some ideas on how you can satisfy the gatekeepers (or actually, your readers and blogging peers – the people who truly matter). It’s called Viral Copy: Trading Words for Traffic, and beyond being free, it’s also free of affiliate links and product pitches.
The beta version of the Rojo FeedShare service has been released, and I think there are some interesting implications. At its essence, FeedShare harkens back to the old traffic-exchange programs of the early web, with a dash of the ezine co-registration programs mixed in. As Rojo explains it:
You give exposure by displaying “Feed Listings” (see examples) which display the name and description of blogs and other feed publishers. When visitors click on these listings they can then subscribe to the RSS or Atom feed for that blogger or publisher in any one of several feed readers.
You then create a listing for your OWN blog and for every impression you donate to the network on your blog, you will receive a listing on someone else’s blog or in Rojo.com. The goal is to help build the feed subscriber base to your blog, increasing awareness and traffic to your site.
In essence, FeedShare provides some of the cross-promotional opportunities that attract traffic-starved writers to the growing crop of blog networks. While many blog networks offer much more than traffic, they also generally want content ownership, have posting guidelines, and in some cases can even be stifling due to political rivalry with other networks.
The thing to consider here is this: any properly-positioned blogging service provider can create a network that offers this type of promotional opportunity, and will be motivated to do so by the viral exposure (and blog real estate) it receives by facilitating the network. Rojo is smartly doing this, but it may not present a huge challenge to the young blog networks.
But what if Feedburner decided to do this? Or Technorati?
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A big part of my going-forward focus is the ways in which RSS will transform content delivery and direct marketing online. It’s such a fast moving area, though, that if I only comment on items in my typical long-winded fashion, a lot will slip by.
So here’s my first edition of the RSS Marketing Roundup, a look at what went on this week in the world of marketing and promotion with feeds.
What do you think would happen if you sent out a large batch of Christmas cards early in the month of December — to complete strangers? Nothing? Maybe a few confused phone calls or letters?
Nope. Most likely you would receive an avalanche of Christmas cards in return, from people who don’t even know you.
The proprietor of a Native American jewelry store in Arizona was having trouble selling her inventory of certain turquoise pieces. Despite the fact that the jewelry was of high quality, and it was the peak of the tourist season, the stuff wouldn’t sell.
The owner had priced the jewelry reasonably. She had placed it in a central display location. She’d even asked her staff to point it out to browsers.
In the NBA All-Star theatrics tonight, 7-footer Dirk Nowitzki won the 3-point shooting contest and 5-foot-9 Nate Robinson won the slam dunk competition.
But the story is even better than the irony.
Robinson, a first-round draft pick out of Washington, electrified the Toyota Center by taking a bounce pass from Spud Webb, the 1986 slam dunk champion, and leaping over the 5-foot-7 Webb for the jam.