Tuesday, 2 December 2008

Blogsworth - Comment Follow Up

Firstly a big thank you to all of you who've helped to make this my most successful post to date, especially to everyone who stopped by to Comment. There were so many good points raised, I feel the best way to answer and thank you all is to write a follow-up post today rather than just responding to you in there.

I always love it when someone picks up from where I left off and writes a post over at their place. For me that adds to the value of my blog, not in dollars and cents, but I think it adds to the respect, friendship and sense of community we have here. That's invaluable. So thank you Stuart for not only responding over at your place, but providing lots more information on further 'valuations' available within the blogosphere and for sharing your experiences when it came to the crunch of an offer being made for your blog. The fact there are several valuations out there, all coming up with very different answers shows it's hard to measure the worth of blogging in pure monetary terms. And of course, which calculation is the right one?

Another couple of metrics often used to value a blog are its traffic and subscriptions. Some of you already show things like your Feedburner subscriptions and Our Friend Ben came up with the astounding fact that something like 70,000 unique visitors a day (which would include subscriptions) is needed for advertisers to consider supporting a blog. If true, I suspect that's way out of reach for most bloggers, not just our gardening blogging community. Only the really popular topics (e.g. technology, sport, news) could support that kind of traffic perhaps? It would take a great deal of hard work, not only to write the kind of good content to constantly attract that amount of visitor numbers, but to also market it (as I suspect the creator of the metric I highlighted has done to accrue that kind of value, Tina). And imagine how much time it would take to respond to the comments - assuming you still were doing that! As Zoe said, would it change from a fun hobby into a chore?

Nancy and Frances made the observation that their blog in Blogger had a value, but their WordPress (WP) migrated blog was worth nothing. Now the metric I referred to is very much link based and I suspect whilst you migrated your content from old to new, the links themselves didn't. I did have a go at using WP for a while a couple of months ago and noticed this with my migrated content. It could be the links measurement may be biased towards the way they work on Blogger too? Also if I remember correctly WP is a bit more 'picky' about the use of links in posts, thus any link based metric will be biased against WP blogs. Can any WP bloggers confirm or expand my limited understanding of WP's offering? I also understand the metric I looked at was based on Technorati's data gathering, so if you've not registered your new blog (Frances, Nancy?) or existing one (James, Helen, Gail, Karen, Chaiselongue, Slice of Life, Blossom and Garden4Life?) that could be the reason why your valuation's a big fat zero. Remember, new blogs are also unlikely to a have value, simply because there's been insufficient time for a value to accrue, unless you've been posting lots of times a day with each post containing lots of links!

For those of you with blogs showing a monetary value (like Flighty, Constant Gardener, Mr. McGregor's Daughter and Happy Mouffetard) it's insufficient to make a living, assuming you want to and could realise its value. Cameron and Shirl's not for selling theirs anyway and Tyra's not going to go down the route of trying to monetize her blog by putting adverts on there. I wonder how many blogs actually make something substantial from their adverts anyway? If I see another advert for a flat stomach, I'm going to scream! Then of course there's all the other things that blogging gives us that are invaluable - fun (especially the quizzes eh Philip?), friendship across the world (Linn), frolics, freedom of expression and lots more besides. Deb recently told us about a marvellous example - a blog especially for members of her family. A great way for everyone to keep in touch and to share, especially if distance separates them. In hard business terms it has no value, but to Deb and her family it's priceless. I think it's just what blogging should be about.

BTW my blog's not up for sale - after all, I don't think any buyer would be up their allotment and finding stories to share keep on popping into their head. If they didn't it wouldn't be Veg Plotting any more. There's too much of me in here anyway. I'm not considering monetizing my blog either. Though if someone paid me to blog or write elsewhere, I might consider it depending on what's being offered! But enough about money and metrics, let's all get on with the priceless aspects of blogging shall we?

11 comments:

  1. What a fun follow-up post VP! The comments on your Blogsworth post were certainly interesting.

    I don't understand how someone can sell their blog to someone else, when so much of who they are is wrapped up in that blog. You would think that the readers wouldn't stay once the author has left. Hmmm...I still have a lot to learn about blogging!

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  2. What a great follow up on your post, VP. I hadn't seen it originally and plugged in my URL. The amount shown is a bit unclear - is that a per year/month/forever value? I'm not at all interested in monetizing my blog, but the discussion in your posts are most interesting :-)

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  3. Hi Blossom - I've still a lot to learn too! I suppose it all depends what people want out of blogging. I know of a couple who would like it to make money for them. Not sure how successful they are. And I think it'd be difficult in the gardening sector as it's more niche. I just like the fun of it.

    Nikkipolani - hi! Not sure what it means it's a bit vague :( Thanks for the positive feedback on the discussions :)

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  4. I have no real interest in the so-called value of my blog(s), and I would never entertain selling them!
    I blog purely because I want to, and enjoy it as one of my interests.
    I suppose that I could call my blog my online plot! xx

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  5. Hey VP, where do you register your blog? Not that I want to make money, mine is purely to document my crazy life. And most importantly, to give back to the people whose blogs I read.

    I started blogging, because I found so many things in other peoples blogs, that told me, I wasn’t alone with some of my ideas. I found out, * where to start with my allotment. *That People give everyday bits of know how on their blog and I feel it is shared for a common goal. * And that people are reaching out into the ether ,that is the blogging world, to say 'you know what, chickens in a city garden isn’t so silly'.

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  6. I'm still being a curmudgeon & refusing to consider adding advertisements to my blog. Applying the University of Chicago's cost/benefit analysis, it's just not worth it for me. So much of the general blogging information doesn't seem applicable to our little garden blogging niche. And that's just fine with me. Keep on making VP as idiosyncratic as always; that's what we love about it.

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  7. MMD - I don't think you're a curmudgeon at all, just wise. I'm interested in your CBA refence, is there a website link? Idiosyncratic - that's one of the best compliments I've had, EVER :D

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  8. Flighty - online plot, that's so true! Don't lose it ;)

    SOL - If I remember correctly you go onto the Technorati site and 'Ping' them (there should be a link to this) to tell them you're there. After a while you can get statistics about your site in terms of links etc. If you need more info, let me know...

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  9. I left this comment on my blog before I realized I should leave it here. A Federal Court of Appeals Judge in Chicago, Richard Posner, was also a law professor at the University of Chicago, where he pioneered the law & economics school of thought. His big thing was the cost/benefit analysis. His blog is here. See also this site. I hope that helps.
    Yes, idiosyncratic is a good thing. You're welcome.

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  10. Good follow on post VP - I went and pinged Technorati - I always do what I am told ;)
    K

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  11. MMD - thanks so much for taking the trouble to reply to my question over at yours. I'll certainly be taking a look at that information.

    AG - Good for you! ;)

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I love reading your comments and welcome thoughtful conversations :)

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