Look Ma, I’m Blogging About Blogging

One of the most common topics for many bloggers is blogging. Whenever I write about blogging in my blog I feel a little odd. I wonder if all this blogging about blogging is like blogging to the blogosphere. (Today I’m going to see how many times I can write blog, blogging or blogger in this entry before I’m compelled to poke my own eye out with a pen.)

I think most bloggers write about blogging because they truly believe it’s a hot topic deserving of their considerable time and energy. Successful bloggers are also very savvy and know that getting others to link to their site boosts traffic and ultimately their rankings on search and blog engines. It’s all about the links.

Smart bloggers also know that some among their audience are journalists interested (or scared) of the blogging phenomenon. If a blogger is recognized as a blogging expert in a main stream media story, that is likely to boost their traffic along with their profile and status in the blogosphere.

So far this tact has created a blogging universe with a top echelon of blogging stars. And if you ever attend a conference on blogging you’ll realize the first names of these blogging celebrities are bandied about as if they were Britney, Madonna or Oprah.

While there’s a pile of research to show how pervasive blogging has become, there’s now mounting evidence that not every single person in the entire world has a blog, reads a blog or even knows what a blog is. Just ask my mom or my aunt or my cousins in western Massachusetts.

Better yet, just ask some typical folks in London. A story earlier this week says that a survey of British taxi drivers, pub landlords and hairdressers, which are often seen as barometers of popular trends, found that nearly 90 percent had no idea what a podcast is and more than 70 percent had never heard of blogging.

In fact, when one of the researchers asked a panel of people about blogging, they thought she meant dogging, which was defined in the story as the phenomenon of watching couples have sex in semi-secluded places such as out-of-town car parks.

“Our research not only shows that there is no buzz about blogging and podcasting outside of our media industry bubble, but also that people have no understanding of what the words mean,” the researcher says. “It’s a real wake-up call.”

But that’s not stopping many from continuing to champion blogs as extremely cost-effective in driving Web traffic to campaign sites and creating interest, according to many of the panelists speaking at the OMMA East Conference on Wednesday.

And speaking of blog news from OMMA…Feedster will within the next two weeks release a product that will allow small publishers to more easily place ads in their RSS feeds. To complement the product, Feedster will also release a feed-profiling tool later this year.

Finally, Nielsen/NetRatings recently released research showing that traffic to image hosting Web sites has skyrocketed due to the massive rise in blogging activity seen since the beginning of this year. As a category, image hosting sites have grown 406 percent to more than 14.7 million unique users since January 2005, accounting for nearly 10 percent of active U.S. Internet users.

In July 2005, 20 percent of active Web users, or 29.3 million people, accessed blogging or blog-related Web sites, growing 31 percent since the beginning of the year.

Jon Gibs, senior research manager, Nielsen//NetRatings say. “The large rise in blogging activity has lifted other Web sites, the primary one being image hosting sites. Simple text-based ‘diaries’ have evolved into a more image-oriented presentation.”

By the way, the latest issue of Revenue is out. You should be getting it within a week or so. When you do, look for my feature article on blogging.

Now, where’s my pen? Ouch. My eye.

Let me know about your blogging activities or better yet, post something in the comments. lisap@revenuetoday.com