Blog biz

Blog biz

: Ad Age has an uncharacteristically numbnutty story on blogs and marketing in the current issue (not online). After saying that there was a “controversy” with “hackles raised” and a “brouhaha” by Gawker’s sponsor blog for Nike’s Art of Speed — without ever saying who had what problems — it goes on to give marketers a list of Don’ts and Do’s for blogs, starting with this:

DON’T throw money at bloggers. These influencers will not respond to outright, traditional ad placements.

Horsecrap. Look at Blogads. Look at the room filled with bloggers eager to accept advertising at Bloggercon.

How could an advertising magazine suggest that advertisers shouldn’t advertise? It could be because the source of the chart is Edelman Worldwide, which is a PR company. PR guys sometimes don’t get advertising. The other source is Intelliseek and right now, I’m listening to a webinar from those folks right now and they’re arguing that “PR tactics work better than advertising.” I disagree. Advertising is a clear and straightforward relationship — somebody bought this space. PR is and always has been about influencing the influencers and it’s important for bloggers (as it should be for reporters!) to reveal that. I’ve long said that if I ran a newspaper, I’d create a flack-free day to eliminate all PR just for one day to force reporters to go out and talk to real people and real sources. Or if reporters talked to PR guys, they should reveal what comes from such spokesmen and spinners.

Steve Rubel — a PR guy who really gets it — and I talked about a lot of this last week at an enjoyable lunch.

  • http://www.buzzhit.com/buzzblog.html Tony Gentile

    (HTML formated version at: http://www.buzzhit.com/2004/09/buzzmachine-ad-age-dont-advertise-on.html )
    Buzzmachine’s Jeff Jarvis reacts to Ad Age’s advice w.r.t. to bloggers:
    “DON’T throw money at bloggers. These influencers will not respond to outright, traditional ad placements.”
    I understand Jeff’s points… but there have been plenty of big old media stories about the “grass roots” and “community” nature of blogs, and the resistance of bloggers to spread the word for “old media” businesses (music/MP3 distribution comes to mind immediately).
    Old media is trying to find its way with blogs and bloggers; it’s not unexpected that there will be mistakes along the way. It could be worse; Ad Age could be recommending tips on how to decieve and exploit bloggers for your or your company’s personal gain. ;)
    # posted by Tony Gentile : 8:53 PM 0 comments

  • http://www.blogads.com henry

    LOL. Did they happen to talk with anybody who’s bought blogads?

  • http://accidentalverbosity.com Jay Solo

    This would make an interesting entry for Carnival of the Capitalists.

  • http://altweeklies.com Roxanne Cooper

    I’m both a Blogads buyer and seller and I guess I work in “old media,” but I have a hard time seeing it that way. The whole argument of “old media” vs. “new media” is a bit silly anyway (if not for “old media” reporting, few bloggers would have content — no news to react to or to comment on). But, that’s another topic.
    Here’s the real deal with advertising on Blogs as I see it:

    • On blogs, I’m reaching an unduplicated world-wide audience I’m not reaching in a single print, radio, TV buy.
    • I will continue to run in print because many in my target audience are not reading blogs. Even for those who do, frequency and multiple media types increases retention of message.
    • Blogads are very very inexpensive.
    • Running ads on Blogs helps our brand image with a certain kind of audience.

    That being said, Blogads needs “real” 3rd-party market research to be taken more seriously by the big-guns.
    Also, I predict that when ad rates on Blogs increase substantially, you’ll get more agency attention. Remember, it’s largely a commission-based business. Cheap rates mean low commission for them.
    Roxanne Cooper
    Director of Sales & Marketing
    Association of Alternative Newsweeklies
    ALTWEEKLIES.COM