Sunday, August 06, 2006

Web2.0 and the real editorial world

It is all the rage right now, getting coverage on Web2.0 sites. Having strangers cover your product in the ephemeral world of bloggers, virtual websites, podcasts and other non-traditional arenas. By putting your product into play you run the certain risk of having people with no training take a shot at it. Editors and reporters are trained to cover their beat, paid by large media corporations to remain informed as to their beat, their products, the players and the financiers.

Bloggers have no such scruples. They can only express their personal opinions with no foundation of responsibility. Unless the blogger can come up with a comprehensive reason for his position, then his opinion has little value. With over twenty years of experience in the semiconductor world, as an engineer, a writer and a columnist, Dave Burski does not need validation, his recent move to EE Times compounds and confirms his respectability and the truth of his opinions.

Although it may not be easy to have Dave look at your microcontroller application story, it will certainly carry more weight than to have dump all over your product. The value of the EE Times coverage cannot compare to an accumulation of blogger’s random opinions.

On the other hand the numbers are impressive. Some bloggers get over 30,000 hits a month and more. As a PR person you must keep those numbers in mind because at best your product can be carried ahead with a vengeance. But bloggers, unlike real reporters, generate controversy and in so doing generate interest. Very often that controversy comes from being a contrarian, not following the rules and pushing effect rather than fact.

So, cozying up to bloggers may have a down effect on your activities. Not cozying up to bloggers has no effect on your PR. If you are successful in getting media attention, very soon you will notice that reputable journalists, who all seem to have their own blogs now, will be discussing your company. That’s the best way to break into the random world of the blogoshpere. If you build a solid rep, they will find you and enhance that rep.

Otherwise, as you hunt them down for attention, you may end up flamed.

Your choice!