Saturday, June 16, 2007

Viral Community News

1. - Now there's a set with some serious smartitude. This is from Jordan's Flickr stream, and shows the man behind Tell Ten Friends on the set of The Lab with Leo Laporte. I loved watching Leo's shows Call for Help and The Screen Savers on ZDTV and then later Tech TV. Jordan when will your episode be airing, and will it be online?

2. - Jennifer is at it again. After running her very entertaining 'Thirty Days' series at Search Engine Guide in 2005, where she launched a new business online in 30 days, this time she's launching a business without the help of Google search results. An interesting exercise to educate business owners on how to build web traffic via alternative search methods. The series is called 'Hide and Speak', and here's Part 1, and here's Part 2.

3. - Matt continues his popular 'Buzz Friday' series at Techno Marketer.

4. - Blogging Diva Toby has a nice roundup of some of the marketing blog resources out there, including The Viral Garden's Top 25, Todd And's Top 150, and links to the recent interview series that Philippe conducted.

5. - Drew asks an interesting question. He asks if Seth was full of crap, would you call him out? Apparently Drew missed last summer's SethGate episode ;) Ugh, I almost hate to even get into this because these type of 'debates' pop up every few months and there's never any type of resolution, which is mainly why they keep popping up.

Instead, I'll try to ask my own interesting question; If Seth started a new blog today and his name wasn't attached to it, would it be a success? For example, if he started blogging as 'Bob Arnold', and there were no clues, visual or otherwise, that it was really Seth behind the blog, would it be popular? Especially if he didn't allow comments, as he doesn't on his current blog.


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Nudge Marketing said...

If Seth started a new blog tomorrow, Im sure it would take on, it just might take a while. If the guy was relying on name alone, I wouldn't still be reading his blog.. its the content that keeps me coming back.


Mack Collier said...

Jake remember we are assuming that Seth's new blog would not allow comments, as his current one doesn't. If Seth's name wasn't attached, and comments were not allowed, would his content alone be enough for the blog to build the necessary readership it would need to grow and thrive?

I have my doubts. Great content alone doesn't guarantee that you will have a 'popular' blog. It certainly helps, but as important, if not MORE important, is doing all you can to be an active participant in the blogging community, by encouraging participation both on and off your blog.

Anonymous said...


Great question. Yes, I must have missed the SethGate discussion.

As you know, my question was really more wrapped about "do we have the courage to disagree with a blogger with a big name...or someone who is a personal friend?"

But you ask an excellent question. Would a generic blog with no ties to Seth (and Seth couldn't point to it either) with no comments build a community?

I don't think so. I htink Seth's credibility and name recognition is what drives people to his blog. I'm not suggesting he isn't a smart guy. But if he was Fred Jones, would we be willing to sit at his feet and JUST listen?

My bet is no. There are too many other bloggers who are delivering the same sorts of messages but with the opportunity to engage in conversation.


Anonymous said...

We all have to earn our keep. There are several ways of doing that... A pseudonym run by Seth would take some time to build up credibility. I have a hard time believing he would be able to do it without allowing comments.

Denying them on his own blog makes some sense, though, given the volume of comments he would receive.

He comments on the blogs of others when he thinks it appropriate, and others are telling me he answers emails occasionally, too. I have to give him props for that.

Toby said...

Mack - Thanks for the shout out and more so for continuing the Top 25.

As for the Seth questions - I would tend to agree with you. Not only does Seth not open comments but I've never seen him post a comment on a blog (not to say he hasn't).

Seems a "seth-blog" is leveraging blogging software for the purpose of publishing versus building "social media" relationships. I call these blog-newsletters.

Anonymous said...


Here's a thought for you. We all have our 'sacred cows'. It is really hard to challenge ourselves to think differently. For example, it may be tough to break into a tightly knit 'community' if the gatekeepers view you as an outsider.

You also ask a chicken-egg question. Once you establish a name for yourself, you have built-in credibility that goes with that. Not everything you do under that name will succeed -- and Seth took plenty of risks that did not pay off during his career... he also made a few mistakes, I'm sure.

And your name, if the credibility is solid, will help you -- just like we counsel companies, yes? There are also people who are willing to smear egg all over your face for the sake of popularity. It is much easier to raise one's profile by poking holes into what someone 'famous' is doing.

As I said, chicken-egg.

Anonymous said...

Hey, apologies for my absence, but a pc crash has left me out of touch to some extent.

To answer your first question Mack, the episode will air in about a month's time, and will go on Google video shortly after that. Watch my feed, I'll post it as soon as I see it go up.

For what it's worth, I think an anonymous blog without comments enabled would eventually gain popularity, assuming the content were at the same level of Seth's current writings, but it would amount to a mere drop in the bucket compared to a blog backed by a name that had comments enabled.

I guess I just really believe that good content will prevail; whether I'm dead wrong or otherwise is another question altogether.