|Last updated: 9/3/2002; 7:34:58 PM|
Marketing 101. Consulting 101. PHP Consulting. Random geeky stuff. I Blog Therefore I Am.Getting Started with Blogging for the Attractive Female Blogger
This document outlines how to begin blogging for a certain type of individual: The Attractive Female Blogger. In this document I will make several perhaps fatal mistakes including:
- Being blatantly sexist in a number of ways
- Making certain assumptions about the concerns of the attractive female blogger that may not be true
Feel free to flame me if you so choose. I’ve tested the guidelines here empirically for some time by direct observation and I am strongly confident that the guidelines contained below, while sexist, are positive in terms of optimizing traffic to your blog while protecting your identity (which I do think is important). With that said, let’s begin!
NOTE: I’m writing this document to guide three bloggers I know, all good friends of mine, who all fall into the category of (extremely!!!) attractive female bloggers. My marketing instincts tell me that if they take advantage of some basic facts about bloggers and the blogging communities, they can make their blogs significantly more popular while still protecting their privacy (which I think is important since women at least sometimes have different privacy concerns than men).
Step 0: Some Basic Facts and Honest Comments about the “Blogosphere”
The “blogosphere” is a term that I and others use that expresses the idea that the blog universe is actually that – a distinct universe or community or online space. And, as in any community, one of the first things that you will learn is that there are personalities and real individuals out there. For example, if you seem someone refer to Dave then it’s pretty much always:
“Dave Winer, Founder of UserLand Software, the company that makes Radio UserLand and the author of www.scripting.com, one of the most popular weblogs”.
or if someone refers to “Evan” then it’s pretty much always:
or if someone refers to “Burning Bird” then it’s
“Shelley, the author of www.burningbird.net, a very popular weblog ”
or if someone refers to Adam them it’s
“Adam Curry, the author of Adam Curry’s weblog, http://radio.weblogs.com/0001014/” (and, yes, that’s Adam Curry, MTV’s first VJ, a successful DOT COM entrepreneur who now lives in The Netherlands and just plain has a very, very cool life”.
If you’d like to see what weblogs are popular, go to:
And then click on any of these icons next to the page ranking numbers which show how many times a particular weblog has been viewed. For example, Adam Curry’s weblog has been viewed (as of this morning, Friday, August 30 something or other, 2002) 384,997 times since it was started.
So the points here, adding some additional information not expressed above but perhaps inferred, perhaps not, are that:
- There is a distinct community of weblog authors and readers.
- This community varies by blogging tool used
- For example Radio users tend to be more technical and geeky, blogger users seem to often be more personal and more diary oriented, etc.
- Communities are built up of people.
- People have identities.
- Memorable, compelling identities draw readers.
Now, with that said, we need to add one additional fact into the mix:
Many, if not most, readers of blogs are male. I have not facts to back this up except to say the following:
- Blogging is still quasi technical and immature.
- Technical things tend to attract men.
That’s a generalization of course and there are thousands if not tens or hundreds of thousands of female bloggers. I don’t mean to slight them in any way, shape or form.
Now all this brings us to Step 1: Creating a Compelling Identity for Yourself.
Step 1: Creating a Compelling Identity for Yourself
Let’s think about your blog for a second. What is it that you are doing? Here it is in a nutshell:
You are just making a regularly updated web page that provides a consistent place people can learn about you and your ideas.
That’s all a blog is. It’s just a web page. Technically it is actually a web site but people generally perceive it as a web page since most people read the main blog page and that’s all. Now, since what you are doing is making a web page, let’s make another assumption:
You want people to read it.
That may be a stretch but there is another aspect of blogging you may not have thought about. The process of writing always, always improves your thought process. Much of what I blog about at http://radio.weblogs.com/0103807/ I would probably blog about even without readers since it simply improves my thinking and helps me do my job. The fact that I have readers is a real bonus but not required.
So, anyway, you want people to read it. Now this brings us to an important issue:
How the heck do people know my blog exists?
After all, if they don’t know your blog exists, they can’t read it. Right ?
Here are the ways people generally find out that blogs exist:
- You tell them. I generally recommend two things:
- You send an email to your friends letting them know
- what a blog is
- where your blog is, the url
- WHY THEY WANT TO READ IT i.e. “I’m writing a blog about Public Relations and working in that field”. - You attach your blog url to your email signature so every email you send has it attached (good viral marketing here)
- People find it via a cross link from another blog.
- People find it via a notification service like www.weblogs.com which is notified whenever your blog is updated (depends on the blog tool here).
- People find it via google.
If you think about #2 - #4, something that you need to understand is that people pick what blogs to read based on very, very limited information. This brings us to the topic of an identity for yourself. Let’s talk about a notification service like www.weblogs.com. When you go to weblogs.com, you see something like this:
So an identity for yourself is the name of your blog and the more compelling the name of your blog, the more likely someone may read it. And this brings us to a (perhaps unfortunate, perhaps not, depends on you) reality of the blog world:
Sex Sells. Just as it does Everywhere in the real world.
Let me explain. Here are several possible titles for a blog of an attractive, blonde blogger who writes about public relations, perhaps some compelling and some not:
- Public Relations Blog
- The PR Blog
- The Public Relations Blog
- Heidi on Public Relations
- Adventures of a really, really cute blonde in the land of high tech public relations
- Adventures of a blonde in public relations
- A Cute Blonde on PR
- A Blonde on PR
- A Babe on Public Relations
- A Blonde Chick on Public Relations
Given the facts stated above that blogging is a community, that many, many blog readers are men and that you want to be read, the more compelling identity you create for yourself, the more likely you are to be read. And, while this advice may be offensive, from a marketing perspective, if you actually want to be read, it does make sense.
NOTE : You can rename your blog at any point to experiment with different identities. This isn’t cast in stone by any means. Once people start going to your blog regularly to read it, you can de-emphasize your hyperbole and focus on just your content.
And, don’t forget that your blog’s appearance can include a photo of yourself as do these blogs:
Comment: Before You Comment Negatively, Read the Text!!!
She’s smart, witty and doesn’t write that
much about sex at all. This is marketing plain and simple –
the subtitle just grabs you – or it does for most men at least.
Comment: Men can do it too.
Mike writes a really interesting blog out of Australia about Java
and other cool stuff but his picture makes it personal
Comment: It doesn’t even have to be visually obvious at first; people will explore.
Moxie.nu relies on someone clicking on the Who? link
(which is the first most link on the left) and that shows this picture:
Comment : Interestingly, you can be male and
even leverage this kind of female imagery. If you
follow the link, it explains his reasoning.
Another important point to understand, and one that we will come back to later, is that a blog is really a conversation with an audience; it’s a discourse. And people relate better to
Step 2: Understanding Why You Want to Blog
build a “personal brand”
communicate your views to others
Step 3: Picking a Topic to Focus On
Step 4: Choosing Tools if You Aren’t Fairly Geeky
Step 5: Protecting Your Identity and Privacy
Now I don’t know about all women but I do know that more than a few want to protect their identity and privacy. God knows there are all kinds of freaks and creeps out there (and, no, I’m not one of the them, at least in my humble opinion). Here are a few techniques that you can use to protect your identity:
- Use a Yahoo Mail or Hotmail account, not your mail email address (why? if you have your own domain name then a WHOIS query will display the registration information to anyone in the world; often that is your home address)
- Use an anonymous re-mailing service (gretch – we’ll add this ot blogsig)
- Use BlogSig for spam protection.
- Don’t Use Your Primary IM account
- Don’t Use Your Real Name if It is Distinctive. This breaks a lot with blogging conventions and its something that I understand the need for but makes me sad. Blogging is all about people and all about real people. Blogs let you interact with people on an intellectually intimate level, learn about their life and generally extend your overall social network. Anonymous and even psuedo nonymous blogging is consequently uncommon. But, let’s say that even if you follow all these guidelines, if your name is at all distinctive then people can learn lots about you with just one google query. Here’s an example – if your name is “Kendra BLANK” (omitted since she’s a friend of mine and I don’t want to disclose her personal information, here’s what google can tell me about her:
- Where she went to high school
- Where she lives or lived
- Where she went to college
- At least one email address for her
Step 6: Frequency
Step 7: Just Plain Blogging
conversation not a discourse
disclose bits of personal information over time
More Stuff I’ve Written on Blogging
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