Saturday, January 24, 2015

Blogging, platforms and PR: how to maximise the fun?

Tonight's brief post goes to an old theme, blogging and the business of blogging.

First, my thanks to Evan for his kind donation. Evan, it wasn't just that your donation came at a good time, Christmas is an income sparse time for me, but it was an affirmation of the value of what I try to write. That motivates me to keep going!

One of the things that I find interesting, one that I have mentioned before, is the progressive inclusion of the blog world in the reach of those seeking to spread a message. One measure of this is the increasing volume of press releases in my in box, a second an increasing invitation to launches or events, including offers of interview. There is a wonderfully random element in all this, but sometimes it can be quite fun.

As part of this, I received an invitation from Rachel at PitchIt2Me to participate in their journo and blogger survey. This is an example of the survey from 2012. It seems to be very similar.

I get a fair number of requests to participate in surveys. Most I ignore, others I start and then stop because I get bored. In this case, I found the survey quite interesting and continued to the end because it made me think about what I did - and why.

A journalist, trainer and blogger,  Rachel lives in the PR world. This comes through in the language, the use of words such as famil. Her clients are people and firms wishing to get their message across in an increasingly fragmented media environment.

I blog because it's fun, because of the interaction. I blog because I seek to get messages across, to influence, on things that I consider to be important. At this stage in my life, my ability to have direct influence is more constrained than it once was, so blogging is a way of keeping me relevant. I blog, too, because  blogging is a central part of a suite of activities, the things that I do.

In  blogging, I think that part of my value lies in my independence. If you write something, you know that it is my view. In December I ran a press release (CEDA announces results of its 2014 business big issues survey), but I made it clear that that was what I was doing. I am not saying that I am perfect, simply that I like to make my position clear. In turn, this allows my commenters to express their own opinions, including opinions about the source of the press release!

In all this, I do have to think about cash. I also have to think about fun.Cash is important because it gives me the freedom to do what I want to do. Fun is important because it motivates and stimulates me. So here I have an incentive to take up some of the offers, including taking advantage of the interview opportunities that I am given.

I have been thinking about the second a fair bit. There is a reluctance on my part to waste people's time. There is also a problem if it is in work time. I have done some radio interviews myself from the office, but in an open plan office everybody can listen in! Still, if the offer is made, then its not my fault if I waste the interviewee's time. I might get something of value to my readers or learn something that will shift my views.

To my regular readers, I know that .I am re-canvassing issues. Still, it's interesting so far as I am concerned. In 2015 I am going to follow up some of these opportunities and report back!




Anonymous said...

Personally I don't agree with Evan's 'cash for comment' approach. I like my muses starving and in a garret; or in a garret, but maybe not starving because that would be cruel, except for sometimes. Anyway, grow your own Jim.

Speaking of which, Evan moved to Tassie (and good luck to him) but obviously he is now in receipt of surplus funds which he is throwing about willy nilly. I'm thinking he maybe glommed onto the maryjane industry; never thought I'd see the day.

Two things: (1) we should further reduce Tasmanian subsidies; (2) something else...


ps (or at very least, Evan subsidies)

Winton Bates said...

Hmm, not sure about that, kvd. (For reasons unknown my iPad rendered kvd as kid. I was tempted to leave it, but it might have seemed impertinent.)

I think transparency is the relevant consideration in this context. As long as we know where Jim gets his money we can make our own judgements about the extent of influence that might be involved.

Jim should be encouraged to refrain from making vows of poverty, or chastity for that matter, which might adversely affect the quantity and quality of his output. Evan should be congratulated for helping to keep Jim blogging.

Anonymous said...

Thank you Wanton; your comments have been taken under advertisement. Perhaps in the meantime you might provide a proper declension of the following Jimspeak:

I have done some radio interviews myself from the office, but in an open plan office everybody can listen in!

-as a novice myself, I would have thought that to be the entire point of a wireless interview?


Jim Belshaw said...

Good morning all! First, kvd, my thanks for the donation! It will go towards my replacement camera.

I used to carry the damn thing every where for those snaps to illustrate my stories. It must have dropped out of my pocket, the second to suffer that fate. I have been missing it greatly.

Next, the thought of Wanton Winton blows my mind. In all the years I have known Winton, the word Wanton never came to mind.

I am pleased that Winton does not want me to take vows of poverty or, especially, chastity. Starving in a garret alone is not high on my list of priorities, although it does seem to be de riguer for those with writing or painting pretensions.

Now kvd, I can broadcast to my heart's content, well within reason, but if I broadcast from the office some may form the view that I should have been doing work!

Anonymous said...

Hi Anon. I am sorry Jim felt the need to remove your comment, because I actually do believe in free speech - however misguided, whatever the target.

But I'm wondering what in the above conversation may have triggered your response? If you have followed Jim's meanderings for any time I believe you would find that I have nothing but the utmost respect for his views (suitably corrected - but there I go again...) and that I hold Evan in high regard. In such high regard that in fact I feel more than comfortable in using him as a target for my sometimes less than favourable retorts.

Winton (Wanton) obviously 'gets' this - just as I smiled when he went to some lenghts to deny his use of 'kid'. Just as Jim himself did.

It leaves me wondering just where fun discourse has left us; is it now proscribed that all should toe some sort of imaginary line, causing mild offense to nobody, saying nothing?

Or should I end each sentence with :) - just in case I accidentally offend one of the 'keepers of what is polite'?

Seriously, life is too short, and often unjustly terminated well before allotted time, to concern yourself with such imagined, or perhaps misunderstood, offense.

Shorter version: go boil an egg :)


Jim Belshaw said...

kvd, I probably shouldn't have removed anon's comment. It is something very rare for me to do. As you imply, you can cope.

Perhaps I was just feeling stroppy and perhaps annoyed. Part of my problem is that I want to encourage discussion and not everybody is as tough a weed as you!

Anonymous said...

not everybody is as tough a weed as you

Or, by life, as well and thoroughly rooted.


ps :) :) :) - to distribute as you will.