We often think of the 'calm before the storm', but rarely do we recognize or even witness the 'calm after the storm'. This sunset occurred less than an hour after a severe storm, near Otter Falls, MB, that brought down a hundred trees near a cabin we had rented. The clouds became soft like cotton balls (mammatus clouds) and the sky was at peace.
Using Technorati’s math of 133 Million Blogs worldwide, and disregarding the generally excepted 180 Million blogs number (often quoted online) I did a simple growth chart. As you will see in figure 1.51 below, if blogs were just to simply keep growing at the pace they are now of about 94 Million blogs added each year, by 2018 we will have over 1 Billion blogs online.
The reality is that growth is speeding up, not slowing down. If blogs did not speed up their growth and are currently posting about 7.4 Million articles every 120 days or over 22 Million per year, then by 2010 there will be over 50 million blog posts being added each year.
Let’s consider if growth compounds.
By 2013 there could be over 1 Billion Blogs online.
In all likelihood, the compound growth scenario in Figure 1.52 is probably most accurate considering 78% of the 6.6 Billion people on the planet aren’t online yet. As you will see in Figure 1.53 below, over 1 Billion new internet users came online in just the last 8 years, many of whom decided to blog. So, if the annual growth rate of new internet users’ stays constant or grows, then this means even more competition and dilution for the current 133 Million blogs.
Figure 1.51 LeeRaito.com Simple Growth Projection (Blogs growing at 94,608,000 blogs per year)
Figure 1.52 LeeRaito.com Compound Growth Projection (Blogs compounded growth of 50%/year)
Figure 1.53 World Internet Net User Statistics http://www.internetworldstats.com/stats2.htm
Traditional Blogs are Dying & Why You Need to Stay Ahead of the Curve to Profit
This is part one of a four part quasi White Paper I have put together on the changing and controversial landscape of traditional blogging. My hope is to create a conversation on whether people agree or disagree that traditional blogs are dying, and what the future holds for the blogosphere.
Intro: The Blogosphere’s Problems Are Your Opportunity
Section 1: Current Stats on the Blogosphere
Section 2: Long Run Projection Rates
Section 3:The Problem(s)
Section 4: How to Stay Ahead of The Curve & Profit
Conclusion: The Death of the Traditional Blog Is Your Opportunity To Stay Ahead of The Curve
Intro: The Blogosphere’s Problems Are Your Opportunity
What is the problem?
The blogosphere needs some form of birth control, as with current growth rates by 2010, there will be approximately 300 Million blogs online making it next to impossible for 99% of regular companies, professionals and personal bloggers to benefit from traditional blogging. There is not going to be a magical pill to stop the growth.
3 Blogs Are Born Every Second
As you will see through out this White Paper there is a fundamental paradigm shift going on in the elite circles of the Blogosphere towards multi-media blogging & micro blogging as the death of traditional blogging takes hold. This shift is occurring because it has to, in order to keep blogs alive and relevant. The statistics that you will read in Section 1 and projected growth rates in Section 2 will astound you, and you will begin to understand why the old school style text blog is a dying breed (Only A Select Few Will Survive)!
Section 1: Current Statistics on the Blogosphere
Many of the statistics you will see here are cast in a positive light, as they were drawn from over 1000 bloggers who took part in Technorati’s.com 2008 State of The Blogosphere Survey. I am highlighting the positive aspects, because I want to be very clear that the opportunity for blogging, into 2009 and beyond, is nothing short of amazing. But as you will also see, there is a darker side of the Blogosphere that Technorati did not delve into. It is this darker side, and overpopulation of new blogs that pose the majority of problems that will need to be overcome in the coming years and decade.
With three new blogs coming online every second it is hard to fathom the numbers. With Technorati’s 133 Million blogs on record, one way to measure the statistical significance of the all the new content coming online is to look at ping statistics. A ping occurs when a blog posts a new article.
As you will see in Figure 1.11 below, 93% of Spinn3r’s hourly pings are from spam blogs. Technorati safeguards itself and its members from this spam, but the blogosphere increasingly has to fight this new reality.
If you are a blogger, whether corporate or personal this is a major problem which is costing you or your company time and money.
What Are Spam Blogs?Sometimes referred to by the neologism splogsare artificially created weblog sites which the author uses to promote affiliated websites or to increase the search engine rankings of associated sites. The purpose of a splog can be to increase the PageRank or backlink portfolio of affiliate websites to artificially inflate paid ad impressions from visitors and/or use the blog as a link outlet to get new sites indexed. Spam blogs are usually a type of scraper site where content is often either inauthentic text or merely stolen (see blog scraping) from other websites. These blogs usually contain a high number of links to sites associated with the splog creator which are often disreputable or otherwise useless websites.There is frequent confusion between the terms “splog” and “spam in blogs”. Splogs are blogs where the articles are fake and are only created for search engine spamming. To spam in blogs conversely is to include random comments on the blogs of innocent bystanders in which spammers take advantage of a site’s ability to allow visitors to post comments that may include links.Figure 1.12
Why are spam blogs so pervasive? Simple answer… its profitable!
Here are what bloggers are writing about:
So why do bloggers blog anyways?
Considering only 21% of bloggers make any money at all, it appears many of the remaining bloggers will at some point try and monetize their blog. As you will see in the next section on Long Run Projections, this will be a very difficult task with fierce competition from not only the existing blogosphere, but the millions of new internet users that will choose to blog.
Yes, blogging can be lucrative.
If you find yourself in the top 1%, then your blog is responsible for over $200,000 in revenue each year. These top earners also skew the numbers, and as a result have many traditional blog newbie’s chasing a carrot that is 99% unachievable.
Having said all that, the future of multimedia and micro blogging is bright… it just won’t be with traditional text only blogs.
The future of bloggingBloggers peer into their crystal balls and prognosticate:”Andy Warhol said that in the future, everyone would be famous for 15 minutes. His point was that we would shift from having a few famous people for a long time to many famous people for a short time. I think the number of blogs will grow, but the average life span of a blog will shorten.”Scott Sheppard labs.blogs.com“There will be more blogs used in education, particularly among K-12 students and teachers. Bookmarks will merge with blogs for those of us who use our blogs as note-pads or filing cabinets. Blog archives will be viewed as a rich source of cultural history. Blogs will be a means for more collaborative team work. People will expect businesses, media, and print organizations, even government organizations, to have some form of blog, in order to promote communication. Blogging will also help to provide insight to businesses about their consumers.”Lynn Marentette interactivemultimediatechnology.blogspot.com“This is just the beginning for blogging. People are getting better and better at this skill set, quality is improving, and we will soon have millions of people generating great content around the clock.”Brett Bumeter softduit.com“There’s a lot of sploggage out there now, and tons of “make money” type bloggers which glut the playing field. It makes the searching and finding of good content difficult. I think the individual or group blog or blogging group networks will simply be a part of the warp and woof of the Internet. There’s no better way to communicate with a large number of people than blogging.”
“Blogs will eventually morph – some will break off into hybridized news sites, others into password-protected ‘personal diaries,’ with others going on to offer products and services (home businesses).”
“I’ve loved watching how some of the Big Dog corporate bloggers adopt the characteristics that make the best personal blogs so effective: personality, passion, smarts, usefulness, humor. ÊBlogging and other forms of social media are changing corporate-think and driving a revolution in how companies do business.”
Debbie Weil Blogger and author of The Corporate Blogging Bookdebbieweil.com
In short, the blogosphere is clearly changing and although the stats are very clear the opportunity is great, there are severe problems to overcome from overpopulation and the increase of spam blogs.
** If you have Stumbled Upon this blog after the contest has closed please post your comments below or subscribe to our email list as we will be doing more in the future!!!!
First Place – Suwari (Comment 41) Second Place – Yang T (Comment 31) Third Place- Nicola (Comment 49)
We will update which Charities benefited once the winners have indicated where the $$$ is going!
We have to make a special note of Nicola who desperatley tried to bribe the judges by sending the photo on the left. We hope they will enjoy the suprise bonus. Also, our oldest daughter Emma really wanted Yang T to be the top winner, as the story of ripping a dollar bill in half really had her chuckling. As you will see in the below video, the results of the contest were 100% random, and although you needed the judges vote to get into the final 10, it was all luck after that.
Well our first blog contest has sadly come to an end, but you can be sure this won’t be the last.
My wife and three daughters have simply been amazed that entries have come from the furthest reaches of China, Italy, the United States, Africa and many other countries. Many contestants were very creative and even wise in attempting to bribe the wee judges. Everyone has a worthy charity to support and we truly wish we could support them all!
Thank you to everyone who took part and we look forward to ‘Paying It Forward’ more in 2009.
Video Proof of Random Draw of 10 Finalists:
*** CONTEST IS OFFICIALLY CLOSED*** Thank you to all contest entrants, after tabulation the results will be posted here: /charity-blog-contest/
WIN MONEY FOR YOUR CHARITY & A FEW GOODIES FOR YOU
This contest is brought to you by my daughters Emma, Hanna & Grace in the spirit of giving. Two of my beautiful daughters survived and thrived after heart surgery. It’s time to start giving back and paying it forward! If you have Stumbled Upon this contest, then we hope you will take a moment to enter and tell your friends!
Update 12/31/2008: It’s New Years Eve, and as we get ready to say goodbye to 2008 and usher in a New Year, we are very excited that 35+ people have entered our ‘Pay It Forward’ contest. With so many heart felt comments, my girls will have a very tough time selecting the 10 finalists. Less than a week left to go…
1st Prize $500 To The Charity of Your Choice, 8G iPod Nano ($135 Value)
2nd Prize $100 To The Charity of Your Choice, iPod Shuffle ($70 Value)
3rd Prize Mystery Prize (Unknown Value)
We wanted to keep it as simple as possible and give everyone a chance to win great prizes that will make a difference. Extra kudos will be given for creativity, humor and individuals who have a ‘pay it forward in the spirit of giving’ mentality.
How to Enter:
1. Simply comment on this post below with “WHY’ you feel you should win, or creatively choose a way to comment that you think will set you a part. 1 entry
2. Post about this contest on Your Site. 2 entries
3. Pay It Forward by telling three people about this contest. 3 entries (Just put the words ‘Paid It Forward’ at the end of your comment and we will trust that you did!)
Each entrant can have a maximum of 6 entries only.
Start Date:Contest Officially Starts Now & Ends Jan.5th/2009 23:59 CST
Yes, that’s it folks! Put your creative thinking caps on and have some fun. We will post updates as frequently as possible.
Rules: On January 6th/2009 three winners will be randomly drawn from 10 of the best comments and reviews. The 10 best will be selected by a panel of three highly trained professionals; my daughters Emma (9) Hanna (7) & Grace (3). Once the ten are selected, we will randomly draw for the prizes using random.org and announce the winners as soon as they can be contacted.
Sponsors: If you are interested in adding to the prize pool, please contact me directly at leeraito @ gmail.com We would love to have you participate, and will proudly list you as a sponsor.
This is basically a retort to what Lain Thomson subjectively reported on www.Vnunet.com. No beef with Lain, but HP is off their viral marketing rocker chair!
According to HP’s Social Computing Lab research into social actions of Internet users on such services like Facebook or YouTube, Viral Marketing may not be dead, but it barely has a pulse. They suspect that because users only interact with in two to three subgroups no matter how many friends they have, this may be the cause for many failed viral marketing campaigns.
Could it be true? Is Viral marketing dead?
There is some marketing executive crying, “It was really, really good, it was a mega wicked viral campaign that just didn’t spread!” Now HP has given every failed marketing campaign an excuse, as opposed to saying it was just a real bad viral marketing campaign, or it was snuffed out by something better.
Viral marketing is not dead, nor will it ever be.
On YouTube or Facebook, you have milliseconds to grab a user’s attention, and sometimes marketing executives mess up and miss their mark…period. They only thing that I can see that HP got partially right was that momentum has to be gained in the first day, and that’s logical for a campaign to have immediate and exponential growth.
Please read to the end for the surprise Angelina Jolie twist…
So there I was, hanging with the family on short vacation, paying for those insidious Happy Meals at an undisclosed location in Grand Forks, ND. Then it happened… the counter girl handed me my change, with a smile. As I was about to stuff the bills in my wallet and go stuff my face, the red ink stamped next to George Washington jumped out at me. I was intrigued, curious and wondered what mysterious message awaited my discovery.
For a brief moment, I felt had just won a mini lottery until I read the following message: See where I’ve been Track where I go next www.wheresgeorge.com A little deflated, I cursed my decision to not bring my laptop on the family vacation, but having to wait a few days to check this out probably added to the excitement. Honestly, I thought I was seeing a knew viral marketing tactic with America’s best viral medium… money! Who was behind this? The movie industry, an ingenious charity, the US Government… I was wrong, wrong, way wrong!
After getting home and pulling up www.wheresgeorge.com I discovered the United States Currency Tracking Experiment has been going on for more than 10 years (where have I been!!!), and exactly as the message suggests it is designed for the curious at heart to track where a bill has been and after you release it back into the world, where it will go next.
So today, wanting to know the history of this particular George Washington, I signed up at the site and entered in the serial number, current location of the dollar bill I had found and short little story. In hopes, that I would discover a vast history that I have so vividly imagined. Of course, this bill must have traveled thousands of miles, and touched the hands of Angelina Jolie in Hollywood, passed though the casinos of Las Vegas, and worked its was north by some hitch hiker who was trying to get home to see the love her life, and kept this last dollar to have a cheese burger at McDonalds while she waited for her long lost love to come pick her up where they first met .
So it turns out, this bill has travelled a measly 337 Miles, from Minnesota, USA to Manitoba, Canada in a little over a year. A big, big Yawn! But that doesn’t mean the story ends here. Here is the Angelina Jolie twist. Let’s give this George Washington fellow a real trip. If anyone reading this on the other side of the world, or at least not in North America, has a great cause to support… I’m buying!!!! Your cause will get the Wheres George 1$ bill and I will throw in an additional $100. Just reply to this post, and we can work out the details via email. I will continue to update this story as it unfolds!
Maybe we can eventually get this bill to Angelina Jolie or to someone who will help change the world with it, or at least give this George Washington guy a little sexier ending than 337 measly miles and a McDonalds Happy Meal. According to their site WheresGeorge.com hasn’t made the news in 6 years, and their blog hasn’t seen a fresh post in 2 years. Maybe its time the owners and the estimated 50,000+ registered users of www.wheresgeorge.com start using those dollars to help out those who are less fortunate, and see just how viral money can be when it has some good karma attached to it.
Update # 001- Thursday, July 31/2008 – Wheres George user Amy stopped by and straightened me out on a few things, namely not exposing the serial number of a bill. That was confirmed when a few minutes later came from none other than Hank Eskin, the creator of WheresGeorge.com (pasted in a comment below)! So NO, requests for a charity on the other side of the world yet, but as per Amy I will be heading over to the Wheres George forum to see the users section devoted to Charity. Kudos to Amy for helping raise money for Breast Cancer.
This post will continue to be updated as it develops.
Jack is the go to guy who consults gurus and experts the world over on link building and social marketing strategies.
I’ve watched my blog and other website traffic and rankings improve drastically by applying what Jack has in the Black Book.
What’s strange to me is that Jack is just giving it away. Its jam-packed with resources and tactics to immediately start driving more website traffic and I know he could charge for it and make a bundle.
But its really a no strings attached download you can grab right now and start benefiting from immediately.
At the end of this post I am going to give away one of my best ideas of the day away free to you and the world.
‘Give Your Best Ideas Away Free!’ This is an interesting statement, and around most entrepreneurs I know it is also one that gets mixed reactions. I’ve had some people just get down right stupid and mean hearted when asked to give away their best ideas. Can you blame them? No, it’s just a fact of life we tend to guard what we think could be profitable, and as a result the natural greed in us shines through. The two year old who doesn’t know how to share and yells ‘MINE’ still lives in all of us.
Here is the theory behind my madness! Call it karma, call it my belief in the laws of the universe… call it whatever you want, but I truly believe that if you, me or anyone else has an idea that for whatever reason can not implement in a reasonable amount of time, the idea will simply get lost. This does no one any good, and in reality when people hear great ideas 99% won’t implement them, even if they had the time and resources to.
What I am hoping for is the 1%, or the tenth of one percent of people who will take the idea and make it happen.
All I ask is that if you are that rare person to run with one of my ideas, that one day you pay me in what ever manner you feel fit. In other words pay what you felt that idea was worth one year after you implemented it.
Idea # 1 Purchase the web domain www.ItWasNiceToMeetYou.com and establish a service for people to follow up with people they meet in their life. This service could have social networking features, but more importantly the ability after meeting someone and getting their email address, to send people to their customized www.ItWasNiceToMeetYou.com link. The possibilities to provide services to users are endless from there. If you have read the Tipping Point this concept will intrigue you.
That’s it! Now go out there and share your best ideas!
Classmates filed with the SEC today… Initial Public Offering is on its way.
Having at one point personally spent cold hard cash for an annual membership at Classmates.com, I can see the validity in owning stock of one of the largest and arguably the ‘Grandaddy’ of social networking companies online. Classmates was one of the true pioneers of social networking, and has built a huge registered data base of free users (Rumoured to be 50 million strong) and an impressive two million paying customers.
A concern for potential investors will be in the financials and the competition. On gross revenue of over 40 million, Classmates is still losing money on paper. Does that matter in the world of Internet stocks? In the short term no, but over the long term absolutely. Over the long term, they will compete with the likes of My Space & Facebook. One of the key reasons I no longer keep a paid membership at Classmates, is all my school friends are now using Facebook…
Either way the IPO is registered and official with the SEC, and will be one I will follow closely.