Red Herring, which is now up and running once again, has an interesting article about blogging for business, and even blogging for money. Here’s a snippet:
“Tens of thousands of small-business folk are reaching customers they never reached before with imbedded cost advantages previously impossible,” Mr. Schroeder wrote. “Everyday individuals are creating businesses once reserved for the big, established, brick and mortar juggernauts. For those of us in the traditional information, content and advertising businesses, there is some lesson here, no?”
I certainly do reach more people with my blog than I did without it, but I’m not sure about a lesson for the information, content and advertising industries. RSS advertising is cheap and effective, and communicating using a blog is also cheap and effective. For marketers the ROI is much higher and for information industries, such as news media, they have the opportunity to reach a wider audience with a lower cost, if they choose. For real estate agents, blogging offers a low-cost solution to reaching a global audience, allowing the ability to constantly communicate with prospective buyers and sellers. If media wants to learn something from blogs, they should learn that the failure to change or adapt results in the loss of prominence, dominance and revenues, as bloggers begin to break news faster and more accurately than traditional media sources do. Bloggers who are paid to write about a certain book, music CD or anything else really aren’t any different than Coke paying a movie studio to include Coke prominently in that particular movie. Since bloggers are more opinion-columnist-oriented than they are journalistic, there really shouldn’t be any question about whether or not someone pays a blogger to review and link to something is ethical. After all, the blogger still gets paid for giving a bad review of the product, just as a columnist still is paid for a critical review.