Heck if I know. I didn’t start this blog to get rich.
Heck, when I started it, there wasn’t anything called blogging. I was just writing down notes, thoughts and links to outside research that were useful for articles or books I was writing and so that I would have access to them when I was out consulting. That way, I could turn lonely hours in hotel rooms into exciting and productive work sessions — you know, like it says in all of the pricey hotel Internet connection brochures!
One thing I haven’t done is sell my blog space. In this biz, for those who look at blogging as a business, the number of readers you have visiting your page translates into the level of excitement vendors have at the thought of advertising with you. These days, beyond the idea of a banner ad, the vendors want to run ads around your words, or replace your words with their words either with you as the author or via a ghostwriter writing as you.
I was approached by a kind person last week who offered me good money to write on her client’s blog either as myself or using a pseudonym for which she would pay big bucks (well, not really that big). I was intrigued and went along to learn more. They would provide, she explained, the topics and the content points, so it was a pretty easy gig for an accomplished word smith like me. We ended up parting ways agreeably when I offered to write something on her blog from time to time, but without pay and without using their topic or talking points.
Let’s keep the advertorial separate from the editorial in the blogosphere at least. We are already seeing way too much creep in the trade press.
That said, I do occasionally take advantage of paid blogger opportunities. IBM Edge is one. In 2012, they paid my expenses and a small renumeration for my time in connection with live tweets and blogs and video blogs I do around their outstanding Edge conference.
Note that I did not sanitize my stuff in any way. I raised pointed questions and maybe even introduced some controversy into what they were saying, what it meant, and how it was said. Apparently IBM understands that a critical analysis piece is more useful than a repetitive assertion of the same talking points from different mouthpieces. At least, they gave it a try last year. I hope they will again this year.
In the meantime, I have been enjoying the role of moderator for a bunch of IBM webcasts, done with InformationWeek and UBM. There’s one on SmartClouds coming up this week on Wednesday. Since everyone knows that I am…ahem…circumspect in my embrace of clouds, I look forward to asking a few tough questions of my own to the great speaker IBM has lined up for the gig. Hope to see some of you there.