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June 02, 2005

The Business of Blogging

Heather Green

These mini-networks that are popping up really intrigue me--whether it's John Battelle's early musings about his startup or the work that Henry Copeland is doing with Blogads and its partnerships with bloggers. Clearly, these are ways for people to make money blogging and to start a business.

What I wonder is whether, as a business, it's more profitable to follow the Gawker and Weblogs Inc. model, where you own the network and hire the bloggers, or to organize a loose confederation of indie blogs, like Copeland is doing.

02:45 PM

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Heather:

I think we will see three models:

1. Individuals will blog and will be able to make money by joining networks -- whether that's BlogAds or AdSense today but this will take off especially when the infrastructure is built to enable the creation and serving of ad hoc networks (today, you can be part of a gadget buy, tomorrow part of a software buy and each network is different). I've written that we need (a) metrics -- which starts with cookieing blog readers, (b) an open-source ad call so anyone can hook onto any network and any advertiser can buy any blog.

2. New companies will create their own brands and pay salaries or revenue shares, a la Denton and Calacanis.

3. Big, old companies will hire bloggers.

What will make this more confusing is that we can see a mix of all three: All of them can put up Google AdSense and make money that way. Any of them could join an ad hoc network once that infrastructure exists.

Posted by: Jeff Jarvis at June 3, 2005 10:10 AM

Hadn't thought about the need for metrics, but it's a great idea and I thought, of course, when I read that.

Afterall, the new publishing innovations (banner ads or even online radio) have had to come up with these before they could really expect to have sustainable long term growth. (as opposed to the flighty boom and bust that Net advertising went through in the late 1990s, bolstered by VC money from dotcoms.)

Posted by: Heather Green at June 3, 2005 03:31 PM

rarely does an offline business model translate well on the internet over the long haul.

we used to look for the analog analog.

now we look for the new model.

denton and calacanis are copying the traditional publishing model for the most part.

i want to see something more interesting than that.

Posted by: fred at June 3, 2005 08:54 PM


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