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May 15, 2008

Partnering With a Larger Publisher – Week 3

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Knowing that I was robbing Peter to pay Paul, I tentatively entered into an agreement with US News and World Report to provide content for their “Outside Voices” career blog on a gratis basis.

So far, I do not regret this decision. I still think it’s a “resume” booster and increases blogosphere street cred. However, many of you were skeptical…perhaps rightfully so. Two weeks, and two articles later, the entries have referred – drum roll please – 17 clicks from six sources to my main blog. Ouch. That pales in comparison to the click-throughs I get from BH: where I get paid to write! ;-)

The blog entries so far are hardly the best thing since sliced bread, but with the amount of traffic the US News site generates, this click-through rate is pretty lame.

I’ve already set an end date in my head, where if the results do not improve, or at least show they will be worthwhile beyond what I’ve already done, I will terminate the arrangement.

If I were to charge $15 for a 300 word blog post, I’d be averaging about $1 per click – and that math doesn’t work for anyone involved.

Hopefully we both will continue to learn from this experience. I’ll keep you posted.

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April 28, 2008

Deal With the Devil: Week 2

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Two weeks ago I blogged that, against YOUR advice, I would be offering my blogging services on a weekly basis to a larger media company – for free.

Here’s the latest update. Nine days ago I submitted an article to the company. And since then: silence.

My article has not appeared on their live site and I have not been updated as to when it would appear. In the meantime, I did not submit an article last week. I plan to hold back until the editor explains what their editorial process is. In hindsight, a question that I should have asked (or the company should have outlined) ahead of time.

Next time, I’ll be sure to find out:

– How in-depth will my piece be edited; content? length? spelling? etc.

– When I should expect to see the article posted.

– How stringent the issued word count is.

– Who I can contact if my main contact is out of the office.

– As estimate of traffic I should expect from my blog entry.

My goal with this series of posts is to help you make better decisions in similar situations. I also hope they’ll open the eyes of companies that pursue bloggers on what they should and shouldn’t do.

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April 18, 2008

Signed a Deal With the ‘Devil’

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Last month I asked: “Should You Allow Major Media to Publish Your Blog Posts?

The answer was a resounding, “NO!”

Since I can never resist going against the current, I’ve just signed on to blog for free (once a week) for a decent-sized media company.

While I completely agree with most of you that this will likely result in greater success for the company, and not little ol’ me, I’m looking at it as an experiment.

The contract clearly states that they can pimp my name, my blog’s name, my likeness, etc. for THEIR financial gain. Also, the content has to be 100% fresh and can’t be posted on my blog. Since the two are closely related, in a way, I’m robbing my blog of good content. I can ‘opt out’ at any time.

I will use this space in the coming weeks to report the results. Perhaps we’ll all be pleasantly surprised. At the very least, you can sit back and say, ‘told ya so,’ when I help the corporate monster grow even larger.

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